Sunday, December 09, 2012

Carlos Ruiz Zafón

I've been remiss in posting recent books the last few months...and I've read through a few good ones. Recently, I've been digging into the work of Carlos Ruiz Zafón, a writer from Barcelona/Los Angeles who created three books in a series known as the Cemetery of Forgotten Books - each of which can be read independently and in any order. I stumbled on Zafón's work simply because of the fact that I had noticed Stephen King had reviewed and recommended his work. I might follow this approach a bit more often in the future because I've found the first two books I have read by Zafón to be very well written - great escapism novels that plunge you into the 40's and 50's in Barcelona. I don't know if I can really pinpoint the quality in his writing that I enjoy but it is a combination of a gothic tone, mystery, strong character development and a style that just seems very fluid to me. Overall, just an enjoyable voice to get lost in.

I started with The Shadow of the Wind and just finished The Prisoner of Heaven. Just bought the third entitled The Angel's Game today. If you are tempted to explore further, check out his website here and I would start with The Shadow of the Wind.

For those of you who are readers of The Economist, here is a quote from their review of The Shadow of the Wind. Read the full review here.
'The book is written by someone witty and knowing enough to spoof himself while still being able to raise the hairs on the back of your neck... Carlos Ruiz Zafón's zest is infectious... He swathes his story with atmospherics... Barcelona becomes a place of doors opening into dark interiors of the mind... Behind all this is a fierce satirical energy against the tyrants and philistines of history... A game it may be, but somewhere in the shadows are the Caprichos of Goya.' 

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