The Shadow of the Wind. A book by Carlos Ruiz Zafón in our world. A book by Julian Carax in the world spun together by Carlos Ruiz Zafón in this novel.
The Shadow of the Wind, both the books that you get to know about, the one you read whole written by Carlos Ruiz Zafón and the one you get to know about by Julian Carax are both books that seem of a different era of writing. A different style of writing books altogether. You don’t find books like these anymore. You will fall in love with the one by Carlos Ruiz Zafón because of how well he has written it. The words. The way Zafón strings together his words and the perfect way with how each character’s words feel real. His ink drips with the beauty of the Barcelona it is set in. His words give rise to the characters who are running around, bathing in the storms and rains and snowfalls and sunlight and bullets of that Barcelona. And the words and phrases he uses! Bellicimo. Beautiful. Words fail short for the masterful way he strings his words together. ‘A secrets worth depends on the people from who it must be kept.’ ‘The violet streaks of sunlight from between the clouds. ‘As if I believed that with that kiss I could deceive time and convince it to pass us by, to return some other day, some other life.’ As the tale goes on and on, you want more. More of the words, more these characters running around for their quest. You want to know their stories, the ones who are alive and also the ones who are dead, or about to die. Because as long as we remember someone, they never die. Even if we remember them in the dusty recesses of our mind.
The book, Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón centers around Daniel Sempere, a boy of ten who finds the book “The Shadow of the Wind” by Julian Carax in the Cemetery of Forgotten Books; feeling as though the book by Carax was waiting for his, maybe even before he was born. That night, he goes back home and reads the book full, well into the next morning. He has never heard about the author, Julian Carax. Nor has anyone else. All that is known is his books have a high price in the book collectors’ collection due to a legend related to all books by Carax.
Intrigued, Daniel sets off to uncover the legend of Julian Carax, who he was, or is, and what happened to him ,as his last steps are shrouded in mystery, and so his life.
The book by Carlos Ruiz Zafón is a thriller, a drama, a love story, a coming of age and a documentary about the Spanish Civil War. Whew! Most authors can barely manage a good thriller and this guy multitasks his genres. The book by Carlos Ruiz Zafón easily sneaks its way into one of the best books I’ve read. Like I said, nobody writes books like these anymore. It’s rare to find such dedication to a book and such detail and insane characterization as well. This book is almost perfect. Had it not been for a single hiccup in the story, the book would have been perfect (for me). Well up among my two favourite books, The Fault in our Stars by John Green and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalid Hosseini.
Now as for the hiccup. In most stories, especially thrillers, only the keen readers, whose singular quest is to find out the identity of the killer or the plot twist before its reveal and read and re read every page to be sure of the details find out. But in The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón, the revelation of the twist is not grand. Because the chapters preceding it give you all the information you require to guess the twist and when it finally comes, you’re like “Cool. I know. Cool. Had to be it” rather than “Oh My God! Are you kidding me? No No No” sort of a feel.
The Shadow of the Wind is a rare book. Very few writers now a days write even stories remotely close to this one. Fact is, most of us writers now a days limit our imagination to an acceptable limit that we feel is fine. Carlos Ruiz Zafón lets it run wild and lets all those words fall on paper. We write a bit in fear of exceeding that limit. Zafón has set no limit and hence writes fearlessly. This is one book I would recommend to everyone. This book is a must read. One of the most amazing tales ever spun that deserves all praise showered on it.
It has been a long time since my previous book recommendation, that being of The Curious Incident of the dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. This is sadly because the quality of books I’ve read in the past couple of months has been abysmal to say the least. Books that seemed great but were anti-climatic, or books that were just too darn stupid. Finding books that really make sense and feel great are becoming tougher and tougher to find. The Shadow of the Wind and The Gift(by Cecelia Ahern)(Never thought i’d like a Cecelia Ahern book) have been the two good books I’ve read in the past month or so, despite having read about six books.