But perhaps his dark imaginings are not as strange as they seem, for in a locked room deep within the house lie photographs and letters hinting at the mysterious death of the previous owner.
Like a slow poison, the history of the place seeps into his bones as he struggles with an impossible love. Close to despair, David receives a letter from a reclusive French editor, Andreas Corelli, who makes him the offer of a lifetime. He is to write a book unlike anything that has ever existed, a book with the power to change hearts and minds. In return, he will receive a fortune, and perhaps more. But as David begins the work, he realizes that there is a connection between his haunting book and the shadows that surround his home.
Once again, Zafon takes us into a dark, gothic universe first seen in the Shadow of the Wind and creates a breathtaking adventure of intrigue, romance, and tragedy. Through a dizzingly constructed labyrinth of secrets, the magic of books, passion, and friendship blend into a masterful story.
©2009 Carlos Ruiz Zafon; (P)2009 Random House
"The plot resolves in a rush, for the author finds himself with many a loose end to tie up, but once it sinks in, the result is more than satisfying. Zafón delivers a warning about the dangers of obsession, mixed with an obvious passion for literature and the printed word; his book is also a song of love for Barcelona with all its creaking floorboards and hidden subbasements. A nice fit with the current craze for learned mysteries and for spooks of both the spying and the spectral kind." (Kirkus Reviews)
In quality of narration it's #1. Dan Stevens was born to read.
The plot did keep me moving and wondering, though sometimes it was a bit too Gothic. I might not have finished it, but I couldn't give up Stevens' voice.
The voice of a god, the diction of the Englishman (he played Matthew in Downton Abbey), the ability to inhabit and voice many roles, and a perfect sense of timing.
I immediately looked for Stevens' other books and listened to his read of Roal Dahl's memoir "Boy," also wonderful. I hope he continues narrating even though he's now famous and in demand as an actor.
Yes, engrossing story. INCREDIBLE narration - Best I've ever listened to in 10 years of listening to audio books. I would give Stevens 10 stars if it were possible.
Isabella. Strong, loving, sassy young woman who brings some much needed comic relief to this melancholy book.
No. I stretched it out over a week or so. But I was definitely fully engaged and didn't listen to anything else once I had started it.
Zafon teases us with some parallels with Dickens / Great Expectations - this book (in a way) is kind of an anti-Dickensian melodrama. Be warned: the second half of the last act is very violent and pretty dark. So if you are sensitive to violence, be warned.
The first half was very good, but I found the second half strange and baffling. I was not sure what was going on.
The picture of Barcelona was the best part of the story, and the language was beautiful
The scenes where Isobel comes and takes care of him were the most beautiful.
Dan Stevens is a terrific narrator. I could listen to his voice anytime.
I'm a retired teacher who loves to read, knit and enjoy my grandchildren. I tend to read mysteries and thrillers.
Yes! Dan Stevens does an excellent job with the narration. When he reads this beautifully written prose it's like a massage for the the ear!
The supernatural aspects of the story lurk in the background, tempting the reader to solve the mystery.
His pronunciations of the Spanish names, streets and areas of Barcelona.
This story drags a bit more than Shadow of the Wind, and I found the resolution of some of the plot points a bit drawn out. Listening to Zafon's beautiful prose does make up for this, though.
I enjoyed this book due to the plot, the narrator and the suspense. I would recommend it to everyone.
This is a reminder of The Thirteenth Tale.
I love the narrator, and the author writes beautifully as always. The story is a bit confusing at times, though. Might be better to read the paper version, so you can look back and read again when you need to.
The Angel's Game is reminiscent of old noir crime movies, of fedoras and cigarette smoke.
His voices were spectacular. Sometimes I would wait for a particular character to come up just because I liked the voice.
I am looking forward to reading more books from Zafon that are the quality of Shadow. This book did not have the plot development nor the character development that Zafon perfected in Shadow.
Stevens did a good job, but his (British ?) accent was a disappointment after hearing Jonathon Davis do such a good job that I was transported to Spain. At some points, I wondered what Sean Connery was doing in Barcelona. Stevens is a good, clear narrator I just couldn't match accents with the story and characters.
Perhaps, but not as quickly as Shadow.
Many who look forward to this book because they loved "Shadow of the Wind" (as I did) are likely to be disappointed (as I was). The story line is a bit plodding and ultimately there's no satisfying resolution. Coyly dances around a "Faust/Mephistopheles" theme without committing one way or the other. Characters in some cases border on caricature. Highly forgettable book in my opinion.
Well crafted and a great way to answer some of the questions that will plague human kind until the end of times.
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