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The Shadow of the Wind (El cementerio de los libros olvidados #1)

4.24  ·  Rating Details ·  298,722 Ratings  ·  22,708 Reviews
Barcelona, 1945—Just after the war, a great world city lies in shadow, nursing its wounds, and a boy named Daniel awakes one day to find that he can no longer remember his mother’s face. To console his only child, Daniel’s widowed father, an antiquarian book dealer, initiates him into the secret of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books, a library tended by Barcelona’s guild of r ...more
ebook, 482 pages
Published February 1st 2007 by Penguin Books (first published 2001)
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David It is completely appropriate for a 17 year young man. There are some sex references, but nothing too strong or too detailed. In my Opinion, this book…moreIt is completely appropriate for a 17 year young man. There are some sex references, but nothing too strong or too detailed. In my Opinion, this book might be good for ages above 14 years old.(less)
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Mar 26, 2011 Jamie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone. So good.
Recommended to Jamie by: The girl at the Ferry Building Bookshop
There's probably nothing much I "learned" in the introspective sense, but this is a novel like a novel ought to be. This is an epic film on paper, gloomy and engaging, smokey, noir with crumbling ruins, young love, disfigurment, lust, torture...the stuff of Dumas, DuMauier and, as of late, The Historian. I woke up at five a.m. and had to sweet talk myself back to sleep: all I wanted to do was read. One Friday, after work, I took sanctuary in The Hotel Biron, those little tables in the dark, page ...more
Feb 10, 2014 Annalisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: some language and sex
Recommended to Annalisa by: book club
I read the opening few pages and instantly knew 3 things:
1. I was going to love this book.
2. I needed a whole pad of post-its to mark quotes.
3. I wanted to read this in Spanish for the rich poetry the language would add.

A young boy Daniel is taken by his father to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books and told to salvage a book which he must take stewardship over. He choses a novel—or maybe it chose him—that touches him, stirs his desire for literature, and forever entangles him with the fate of the b
Tanja (Tanychy) St. Delphi
Mar 26, 2015 Tanja (Tanychy) St. Delphi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Tanja (Tanychy) by: a friend
The fact is that I’ll never be able to write a real review for this book. Here is why :

1. I’m not good enough.
I’m not now and I’ll never be. It doesn’t matter how many books you have read or how smart you are, you’ll never be good enough for that. You won’t be able to find exact words and it’s not just you. Only person who can is the author himself, but I think he already said everything he wanted.
Don’t believe me?
- “Books are mirrors - you only see in them what you already have inside you.”
Daniel Teo
Jan 05, 2009 Daniel Teo rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, novels
After reading The Shadow of the Wind, I was left with somewhat mixed feelings. On the one hand, this is such a beautifully written book, and is in essence an ode to literature. On the other hand, there are some serious flaws which distracts from the whole experience.

The best thing about the book, in my opinion, is Zafon's skill in artistic writing. It reminds me of why I love to read in the first place, and makes me wish I could write as beautiful as this. The book contains lots of memorable qu
Jun 29, 2013 Simon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's been a couple years since I read this book so I shouldn't and won't go into details, but the effect has lingered all this time. There's no other book I'm quicker to recommend than this one. It's not that it's particularly important in a lot of the ways "important" books are, it's just that it works as pure reading pleasure (and sometimes, isn't that enough?); so I find reviews from people desperate to discover structural flaws and stylistic cliches to be totally missing the point. Buy it ne ...more
Mohammed Arabey
Jan 10, 2017 Mohammed Arabey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Welcome to The Cemetery of the Forgotten Books, where you can choose one book...but be aware, you may get trapped into its pages, as The Shadow of the Wind

As it unfolded, the structure of the story began to remind me of one of those Russian dolls that contain innumerable diminishing replicas of itself inside. Step by step the narrative split into a thousand stories, as if it had entered a gallery of mirrors, its identity fragmented into endless reflections.”
And for me, by the end..after thes
I found this novel by accident, while quickly browsing shelves at the local library, and let me just say it was the best accidental find i've had in years. From the very first line to the end i loved it, and as a reader i am not easily pleased by anything. I love stories out of the ordinary that captivate my imagination and run away with it. That is exactly what The Shadow of The Wind did.

Right off the bat the plot intrigued me, Daniel Sempere is taken to the a secret labyrinth of forgotten book
May 14, 2016 Antonio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: TODOS, todo el mundo
Recommended to Antonio by: Veronika Carmona
Hoy se celebra el 15 aniversario de la publicación de esta maravillosa obra de arte, que no me canso de recomendar.

Todavía recuerdo aquel amanecer en que mi padre me llevó por primera vez a visitar el Cementerio de los Libros Olvidados.

Porque cinco estrellas no me alcanzan para la constelación mayor que quiero armar en este firmamento digital, porque pase las cuatro de la mañana devorando frases, párrafos, paginas, hojas y capítulos como un hombre que ha estado hambriento de arte por bastante
Jon Cox
I can't believe someone actually published this book. Even worse, in my opinion is the fact that this book is on the New York Times Bestseller List. How is this possible? It must only mean that there are a lot of people out there that think very differently from me. Don't you be one of them. Seriously. Don't be fooled by this book. It is insipid, lame, and poorly written.

First. The prose is so overblown that the author uses three adjectives for every single noun. Count them. He evidently was to
Jan 07, 2017 Nayra.Hassan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
نعم ..ثمة سجون أسوأ من الكلمات :ا
سجون الذكريات. .صقيع الفشل
عندما تقفز الشخصيات الخيالية خارج صفحات الكتب .. لتصحح مفاهيمك و تنغص حياتك و تفتح عينيك قسرا
ا"الكتابة ليست سوي مرآة نرى فيها ما نمتلكه في دواخلنا..و القراءة تحتم علينا إعمال القلب و العقل معا
و هما عملتان نادرتان الآن! ا

جذبتني ؛منذ ان قرأت الريفيو الانجليزي الساحر لمحمد عربي عنها..و رايت ذلك الرسم القاتم الغامض لاب و ابنه: ينطلقان في ظل ريح عاتية الى..مقبرة الكتب المنسية..و يا له من اسم غامض موحي..و مقبض لكل محبي الكتب..و مع رواية مل
Jul 02, 2007 Kelly rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: gothic/Romantic lit freaks
Trying too hard. I wonder if I hadn't read this right after Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell if I would have liked it better. They were both trying to pay homage to the gothic/Romantic era writers, except that Strange and Norrell was brilliant, and this one was.. eh. I appreciated what the author was trying to do, but he didn't do it well enough to keep me reading. Yes, Romantic lit is full of cliche, but the thing is to do it in an intriguing way and with enough wit to keep your audience intere ...more
"Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you."
Well, I wonder then what part of me I saw inside this book - a book I adored despite its imperfections, despite its frequent veering into melodrama, despite (or maybe because of?) its densely Gothic atmosphere.

Whatever it was, it was enough to make me lose myself completely in the rich setting of mid-20th century Barcelona, in the world of seductive dangerous power of literature and perils and passions of young love, a
Rinda Elwakil
لم يحبنا العالم و لم يسعنا، ووسعتنا أرفف مكتباتنا و حيز غرفنا الضيقة.

تنبيه: هذه رواية لا تُقرأ علي عجل، و لا في فواصل بين أعمال مهمة
ستسرقك و لن تفلتك، ستفرغ منها و لن تفرغ منك.

Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE)

2/2.5 stars. Look, it's not my thing to mince my words, so I'll give you my opinion and ultimately, you'll decide what to make of it anyway : as far as I'm concerned, The Shadow of the Wind is overrated and, to say the truth, a bit of a smokescreen. Despite its obvious qualities, I have to admit that I'm a little baffled of its status given that all the flaws, if found in some random YA book, would be called out without any doubt.

Caricatures as characters, from Daniel the Romantic whose consta
Mohammed Arabey
ذكرتني هذه القصة بتلك العرائس الروسية المفرغة والتي تحوي علي عدد كبير من النماذج المصغرة منها بداخلها، خطوة بخطوة تكتشف أن الحكاية انقسمت إلي آلاف القصص وكأنها دخلت لبيت المرايا وتفتت في انعكاسات لا نهائية

بالرغم من ان تلك المقولة قالها دانيل حول رواية "ظل الريح" بمنتصف الكتاب، فبنهاية روايته نفسها وجدت الجملة تنطبق عليها ايضا
فالرواية هي قصة، بل قصص بها غموض، إثارة وتشويق -واقل القليل من الملل احيانا-، متميزة ويغلب عليها الشجن
هي قصص عن العمر والزمن، المصائر المتشابكة، عن الروايات وعشق الكتب
عن ا
فهد الفهد
ظل الريح

هذا هو الجزء الأول من رباعية (مقبرة الكتب المنسية) للإسباني كارلوس رويث زافون، الرباعية منفصلة يمثل كل جزء منها كتاباً مستقلاً، صدر حتى الآن ثلاثة أجزاء، ترجم الجزء الأول وسيصدر قريباً وبانتظار الثاني والثالث والتي أتمنى ألا تتأخر كثيراً، فقد تركني الكتاب الأول مذهولاً، هل تعرفون الكتب اللذيذة؟ تلك الكتب التي تذكرك عندما تفرغ منها بلمَ أحببت القراءة من البداية!! تلك الكتب التي تشبه حلماً جميلاً، قصص متشابكة تدور في أجواء محببة، هذا ما صنعه لنا زافون، برشلونة ما بعد الحرب، شاب يدعى دانيا
Sep 10, 2016 Maxwell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Second reading: May 23-25, 2015-
Okay, I can confidently say, upon re-reading this, that it is one of my all-time favorite books. It was just as surprising and enchanting and delightful as the first time I read it, if not more so. The writing is impeccable. The weaving together of so many storylines and characters is remarkable. I can't gush enough about this book, so I will just say EVERYONE GO READ THIS NOW PLEASE. You won't regret it.

First read: May 12-17, 2014-
Everything about this novel was
Dec 20, 2012 Warwick rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, spain, barcelona
Dire. The writing is along Dan Brown lines, with flowery metaphors mixed until they become meaningless. From page 1: "My father sighed, hiding behind the sad smile that followed him like a shadow all through his life." How can he be hiding behind it if it's following him? Then on the next page someone is described as having "vulturine features", but in the following sentence he has an "aquiline gaze". This sloppiness is everywhere.

The whole thing feels like it desperately wants be seen as some k
ميقات الراجحي
رواية (ظل الريح).. تأتينا هي الأخرى من عالم هذا الدكتاتوري الإسباني الذي عصف بإسبانيا في القرن الماضي. شدني الكاتب منذ أول الخيوط من مقبرته (مقبرة الكتب) التي غصنا معه فيها لنهاية أخر الأوراق. سيكون عليك ملاحظة الفرق بين بوليسة اجاثا كرستي وبين كارلوس هنا هو إضافة لمسة حب جميلة نفتقر لها في روايات اجاثا كرستي التي تبدأ وتنتهي بالبوليسية. برشلونة / السحر الإسباني هي منبت مكتبة المقبرة. وهي برشلونة ما بعد عهد فرانكو الدموي.

رحلة الكتاب المُحرّم داخل المقبرة مربكة في النص ومربكة للقارئ لكن كارلوس يذ
May 16, 2007 Jordan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book SEEMED like it was going to be so good - a dark mystery set in post-war Barcelona, with tragic love and a place called The Cemetary of Forgotton Books... what's not to love? (To be honest, I'm not a fan of tragic love, but everything else at least seemed great). But while I was vaguely curious to see how everything pieced together, I didn't like or care about any of the characters, and dialogue like "Sometimes I no longer know who you are," kept me at a distance. The book never went be ...more
Tim The Enchanter
Posted to The Literary

A Magical Journey - 5 Stars

I has been a few years since a story has captivated me so completely. Several days after finishing this novel, I struggle to find to words to express my feelings. For me, The Shadow of the Wind is a novel that has a mind, emotions and a soul. It was a story within a story in which the reader becomes a participant. Through the eyes of Julian we death and resurrection. Through Daniel we see a parallel with the benefit of foresight.
Nov 03, 2015 Nikoleta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Όταν ξεκίνησα να διαβάζω την Σκιά του Ανέμου, ήμουν ήδη σίγουρη ότι θα μου αρέσει. Αυτό που δεν κατάλαβα για πότε έγινε, είναι ότι λίγες στιγμές αφού το άνοιξα, βρέθηκα παγιδευμένη σε ένα κοιμητήριο για λησμονημένα βιβλία. Η γοητεία αυτού του βιβλίου με είχε κάνει θύμα του. Αφήγηση με εκπληκτική γλώσσα, από έναν προφανώς σκεπτόμενο συγγραφέα, εκπληκτικοί ήρωες –απέκτησα ιδιαίτερη αδυναμία στον Φερμίν, που πραγματικά έγινε ένας από τους αγαπημένους μου ήρωες όλων των εποχών-, πρωτότυπο μυστήριο κ ...more
Kevin Ansbro
"Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it."

In post-Spanish civil war Barcelona, 10-year-old birthday boy, Daniel Sempere is taken by his father to a top-secret, labyrinthine library called 'The Cemetery of Forgotten Books' and is asked to select whichever one of the dusty publications calls out to him from an exhaustive succession of shelves.
He chooses an obscure novel, The Shadow of the Wind b
I went for a re-reading of this book as a prelude to my going to Barcelona last week. I first read it ten years ago and was utterly enthralled by it. Books change – though of course it’s we who change – as time passes, and this was in several ways a different reading experience. I may not regard it as quite the masterpiece I did back then, but it is still a bloody good yarn. To quote the Scotsman:

Good old-fashioned narrative is back in fashion… his (Zafón’s) tale has a dramatic tension that so
Impressive? Addictive? Amazing? I don’t even know which word would done justice to sum up all the feels I got from this book. Yes.. I loved it! and after reading this I know that Gothic fiction will never die..


I read a book which is about a book..

.. A mysterious book that an evil character comes out of the pages (view spoiler)
.. A mysterious author that no one knows where he is, but his book imprints the impression and curiosity in a
Tea Jovanović
I remember taking a Canadian edition with me to vacation in Dubai... And when we went to see Golden souk, instead of, like true female, enjoying all the displayed golden wonders, I found first bench and finished the book, while my family ohed and ahed over so much gold in one place...
one of the five best books I've read in last 10 years
Nandakishore Varma
This one was a HUGE letdown.

It started with a real bang: "The Cemetery of Forgotten Books" is a masterly creation, also the concept of a book choosing an owner. And when Zafon starts telling a story about a book every copy of which mysterious entities are bent on destroying, an author who seems to have disappeared under strange circumstances, and weird characters who seem to have sprung to life from the pages of a romance, the reader is hooked for good.

Unfortunately, it's all downhill from there
Jan 14, 2015 Arah-Lynda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: top, i-said

Here is one for those of us who absolutely adore great literature. It is almost as though The Shadow of the Wind was written for book lovers everywhere. An adrenaline laced, pulse pounding, suspense filled, dark and romantic, gothic adventure, peopled with brilliantly developed, colourful, charismatic and ultimately,unforgetable characters. It really should come with a warning as it will keep you reading late into the night and long after you should have put it down. Fantastic! A must read folks
Jan 26, 2008 Suzy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Patient readers
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 01, 2015 ♛Tash rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to ♛Tash by: TL

I didn't read the blurb of The Shadow of the Wind before I started reading so all I knew was that it had a 4.22 average rating and the title reminded me, well, of farts left on cushions (because I’m really just a 10 year old), but what is it really about? It’s really a bit of everything – coming of age, mystery, tragedy, but ultimately it’s really a book about a book.

The Shadow of the Wind reminds me of the movie A Very Long Engagement in atmosphere, mainland Europe in the aftermath of World War
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Carlos Ruiz Zafón is a Spanish novelist. Born in Barcelona in 1964, he has lived in Los Ángeles, United States, since 1994, and works as a scriptwriter aside from writing novels.

His first novel, El príncipe de la niebla (The Prince of Mist, 1993), earned the Edebé literary prize for young adult fiction. He is also the author of three more young-adult novels, El palacio de la medianoche (1994), Las
More about Carlos Ruiz Zafón...

Other Books in the Series

El cementerio de los libros olvidados (4 books)
  • The Angel's Game (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #2)
  • The Prisoner of Heaven (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #3)
  • El laberinto de los espíritus (El cementerio de los libros olvidados, #4)

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“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.” 5014 likes
“Fools talk, cowards are silent, wise men listen.” 3076 likes
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