REVIEW: ‘The Shadow of The Wind’ by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

A truly remarkable work. This books true value is in its ability to reignite a readers passion for fiction. It perhaps lacks the complexities of the classics but as a consequence it also loses any pretentiousness without compromising the story. Set in the romanticised streets of Barcelona in the period shortly after the Spanish civil war, this book will absorb you from the first page turn.

It will draw you in and immerse you in a world of mystery, passion, Love and dramatic character narrative.

This novel was partly the inspiration for the title of this blog ‘Hidden sanctuary books’. A homage to the romantic image of ‘The Cemetery of forgotten books’.

Early in this novel the main Protagonist, Daniel Sempere is taken, by his father to a secret library ‘The cemetery of forgotten books’. A treasure trove of novels by Authors who had long before faded into obscurity. Daniel is allowed to choose one book only from the labyrinthine church of literature.



Daniel chooses a book titled ‘The Shadow of the Wind’ By an Author named Julian Carax, of whom Daniel had never heard. This investigation of this Author, his whereabouts and the search for more works by Julian is the basis of this engrossing work of fiction.

The book includes fictional events taking place during real historical periods. The effects of Franco era rule help introduce characters and add incredible depth to others.

Written in 2001 it still holds fast as one of the best-selling novels of the 21st century having estimated worldwide sales of around 15 million copies. For good reason.


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