Book Review: The Shadow of The Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

27 Dec

Shadow Of The Wind


From the moment I first grabbed that book, I instantly felt hooked. The plot, the setting, and the literature in the book promised nothing but a ride full of shadows and mystery. I knew I would love this one.

But. There is a huge BUT. As the book progressed, I kept waiting for things to develop. I waited for a revelation that would knock me off my wits. I waited for the mystery to unfold in a way I had never expected, for my mind to be ridden in a rollercoaster from which it would take me some time to recover. But the dull narration never fulfilled the promise it had made in the opening chapters. But I persisted, in conflict between hope and fear that either the book will eventually deliver, or that I would regret ever getting my expectations high. It is the fear that won the battle, and my expectations were never met. Every “twist” in the book was well expected, and by the time I closed the book, the rollercoaster I had desperately expected felt like nothing but a merry-go-round. The poor characterization, tacky dialogues and failure at building suspense felt like a blow to the head.

To diminish the power of the setting would be unfair, if I was to talk of a small part of beauty I discovered through my reading experience I would definitely talk about the Barcelona I got to know through the hands of Zafon. Mystic and cryptic, I yearned to go to that land where the streets are cold and secrets plenty. I wanted to walk in the shoes of poor Daniel as he tries to unfold and recover the life of the writer Julian Carax whose book had haunted his childhood. And that remains the only part of the novel that I truly felt captivated by.

It goes without saying that I could never regret reading a book, and Carlos Ruiz Zafon although disappointed more than pleased, shall remain on my mind, and I shall give him another chance. His overrated book, to me, had failed to live up to the success it had gained. But in some small way it has a piece of charm with its Cemetery of Forgotten Books that I plan to visit again one day in The Shadow of The Wind’s prequel: The Angel’s Game, but this time without hope or expectation, only faith.


Posted by on December 27, 2012 in Book Reviews


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3 responses to “Book Review: The Shadow of The Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

  1. fahsink

    December 27, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    This is bullcrap, that book was a frikken masterpiece and I was in the shoes of Daniel the whole time. I would say you just lack imagination; OR you have read a lot of books that Zafon’s way of writing did not speak to your imagination but that’s a curse coz you need to be able to get into the world of a good writer such as Zafon.

    This review does not do the book justice; I am yet to get over the world of Daniel and Julian Carax, then again maybe I’m simple minded but sometimes we should be.

    This book is a masterpiece.


  2. theRibz

    December 27, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    “I would say you just lack imagination; OR you have read a lot of books that Zafon’s way of writing did not speak to your imagination”
    You forgot a third choice: maybe you, my friend, have not read enough books to know what literary imagination is. This review reflects a personal point of view, and I believe simple minded people (as you have confessed yourself to be), should not bother calling other people’s opinions “bullcrap” because they only reveal themselves full of the words they accuse others to claim.

  3. fahsink

    December 27, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    I think you have reached a new level of being full of yourself. That comment was in no way meant to offend you. I think you need to watch South Park and see where the context of “bullcrap” is used. Anyway, I believe many literary critics that understand literary imagination and have practiced writing and studied it for YEARS have praised this book so I’m not alone in my point. And simple mindedness is not a bad quality; at least not all the time. Socrates used to call himself ignorant for gods sake.



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