The Shadow of the Wind

Carlos Ruiz Zafón

This novel, a sensation in the author’s native Spain and a best-seller as well in much of Europe, is the best kind of old-fashioned yarn, an intricately plotted, gracefully written tale of “murder, magic, madness, and doomed love,” in the dust jacket’s words, set in a vividly rendered post-WWII Barcelona. A teenaged boy comes into the possession of a novel, The Shadow of the Wind, by one Julián Carax, only to discover that someone is trying to destroy all of the author’s works, including the boy’s own copy. His desire to know who is doing this and why leads him on a quest to solve the mystery, and before long he realizes that somehow Julián Carax’s life is intimately involved with his own, and that if he doesn’t solve the mystery, he and those he loves will be in great danger. Filled with fascinating characters and vivid scenes, The Shadow of the Wind is an astonishing debut from a remarkable young writer.