Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Shadow of the Wind

Ruiz Zafon, Carlos. The Shadow of the Wind. Trans. Lucia Graves. New York: Penguin Press, 2004. Print.

Plot Summary
As a child, Daniel is taken to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books. He selects his book and is forever changed. Daniel is compelled to find out more about the writer and the mystery of why Julian Carax's novels are being bought and burned. On Daniel's journey, the reader experiences Julian's journey as well. This novel is set in Barcelona, Spain.

My Thoughts
This book was a bit confusing because the dual plot lines were so similar. Daniel, the main character, feels compelled to find out more about Julian Carax, the author of his now favorite book. As Daniel's story unfolds, so does Julian's. There were some surprises at the end (which seemed a little rushed after reading 300 + pages to get there). I kept notes as I read this book to lessen my confusion and keep up with the numerous characters.

Some sentences I really liked from the book:

"I was raised among books, making invisible friends in pages that seemed cast from dust and whose smell I carry on my hands to this day" (Ruiz 4).

"Presents are made for the pleasure of who gives them, not for the merits of who receives them" (Ruiz 77).

"Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you" (Ruiz 209).

"Fools talk, cowards are silent and wise men listen" (Ruiz 291).

"As long as we are being remembered, we remain alive" (Ruiz 446).

This was not a book I was compelled to pick up and read, but once I sat with it awhile, I was lost in the mystery of the story.

Fermin predicts that television will create imbeciles. Looking at the programming of today, I'd say he's right (Ruiz 106).

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