book cover of The shadow of wind. image source amazon.

Author: Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Amazon Book Link
Language: I have read the English Translation. Original is in Spanish.

Verdict: I enjoyed the way the story unfolded. However the story itself tends to be a melodramatic soap-opera. (3.5/5)

The Shadow of the Wind is a haunting bibliomystery.

Bibliomysteries are a genre of books where the main plot revolves around a book.

It was a very slow read. It took me nearly a year to finish the book cover to cover 😔. Although slow; it was always able to keep the interest high and I rarely had to skip a paragraph or two. At the beginning it was a bit tiresome. You see, I am so used to read books from England and America, that I am used to the names of the places, the history and the idioms. It took me some time to get accustomed with the culture and history of a new city, Barcelona.

The Story

It is a coming of age story of young boy called Daniel. He had found the only remaining copy of a book called The Shadow of the Wind, written by Julian Carax. And then things started to happen around him. Shadowy characters started to pop up at the end of the road. He had found too many people were interested about this particular book and not everyone in a good way. The book changed the flow of Daniel’s life. Obsessed with Julian Carax, Daniel embarked on a journey to find all he can about this mysterious author along side with his best friend and confidante Senor Fermin.

The Storytelling

The story telling is one of the best I have read. The style of telling the same story from multiple person’s viewpoints in itself is a mystery to untangle. As you can see that a single observer does not have the whole story and then they fill up the missing bits with their imaginations and prejudices. And if someone is omitting the truth or altogether lying then everything gets more complicated. Stitching all these overlapping stories together is a monstrous job itself 😀. I loved every bit of it.

Final Thoughts

However, the story that emerged form this storytelling is far from prefect and has all the component of a melodramatic soap-opera. Also the author has no idea about female anatomy, he has mentioned in the book that a doctor can find out if a woman is pregnant with 24 hours of conception (it takes at least 8 days). I don’t think that, it is even possible in 2020, whereas the story took place in the 60’s.

I have found ‘The shadow of the wind ‘ a slow but pleasant read.


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