The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafón

While the writing (or the translation, at least) is certainly evocative, perhaps among the best passages that I have ever read, I still feel somewhat cheated. I had wrongly assumed that the Cemetery of Forgotten Books would take a more central role in the plot. I am, after all, a sucker for books about libraries and bookshops, and the blurb says that there's an *entire cemetery of forgotten books*? Count me in! But to my disappointment, the cemetery only figured in setting up the novel, for it was where the protagonist found 'The Shadow of the Wind', the book that gradually became his obsession.

 

Still, to be fair, the writing is certainly great, containing numerous passages that left lingering images in my mind. The plot is a slow uncovering of the mystery of the book (The Shadow of the Wind) and its author, and flashbacks are used to this end. But the fact that I made slow progress with this real book (due to real life), made it hard for me to keep track of the many twists and turns that occurred at different times in the story.

 

You definitely have to read this if you appreciate good writing and prefer a mix of mystery and romance in your books, but make sure you set aside sufficient time to complete its approximately 500 pages in a short amount of time!