I finally finished reading La sombra del viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafón, although I did end up reading the second half in my English version of the book, The shadow of the wind.
At first I felt a bit crestfallen, as if I had given up. It wasn't that I had given up however. It's just that when you have to read a 250 page book of 1912-17 Spanish poetry for your course, it's hard to have a Spanish novel on the go as well, especially because reading in a foreign language drains me and is far from the relaxing and effortless experience of reading in English. Another reason for my switch to the English version was that the plot had me gripped to the point where I just had to get to the end and fast. Besides, I did read 300 pages in Spanish and the remaining 200 in English. Not bad for a first attempt at reading a Spanish novel.
It's a brilliant and enchanting book and I would recommend it to anybody. Globally, it is the second highest selling novel to ever come out of Spain; second only to Don Quijote de La Mancha, the cornerstone of Spanish culture and literature. The plot deals heavily with the joys of reading, reinforcing these joys for the reader themselves and it is set in Barcelona, Zafón's own home town which he describes with such fluid accuracy that it feels as if he is holding your hand as you float through the city on the wings of his words. If you click the cover below it will take you to Amazon so you can read about it, if you're interested.
3 years ago