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The Prisoner of Heaven: A Novel | [Carlos Ruiz Zafon]

The Prisoner of Heaven: A Novel

Internationally acclaimed New York Times best-selling author Carlos Ruiz Zafon takes us into a dark, gothic Barcelona and creates a rich, labyrinthine tale of love, literature, passion, and revenge in which the heroes of The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel's Game must contend with a nemesis that threatens to destroy them. Barcelona, 1957. It is Christmas, and Daniel Sempere and his wife, Bea, have much to celebrate. They have a beautiful new baby son named Julian, and their close friend Fermin Romero de Torres is about to be wed.
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Publisher's Summary

Internationally acclaimed New York Times best-selling author Carlos Ruiz Zafon takes us into a dark, gothic Barcelona and creates a rich, labyrinthine tale of love, literature, passion, and revenge in which the heroes of The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel's Game must contend with a nemesis that threatens to destroy them.

Barcelona, 1957. It is Christmas, and Daniel Sempere and his wife, Bea, have much to celebrate. They have a beautiful new baby son named Julian, and their close friend Fermin Romero de Torres is about to be wed. But their joy is eclipsed when a mysterious stranger visits the Sempere bookshop and threatens to divulge a terrible secret that has been buried for two decades in the city's dark past. His appearance plunges Fermin and Daniel into a dangerous adventure that will take them back to the 1940's and the early days of Franco's dictatorship. The terrifying events of that time launch them on a search for the truth that will put into peril everything they love and ultimately transform their lives.

Performed by Peter Kenny

©2012 Carlos Ruiz Zafon (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers Ltd.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (177 )
5 star
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3.9 (153 )
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4.0 (150 )
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Performance
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  •  
    MissSusie66 07-17-12
    MissSusie66 07-17-12 Member Since 2010

    MissSusie

    HELPFUL VOTES
    476
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    "Brings together the stories from previous 2 books"

    Peter Kenny narrated this installment and I thought he did a very good job, I do wish Jonathan Davis would have narrated the entire series but each book has a different narrator and I liked Peter better than I liked Dan Stevens who narrated Angel’s Game but still not as much as Jonathan Davis.

    Love how this book ties in all the stories and characters from the previous 2 books it makes me want to go back and re-read the whole series again. I loved this one almost as much as Shadow of the Wind and now with the details in this book I think I would enjoy Angel’s Game more. It was so nice to be back with these characters as the truth of the past is revealed to Daniel and how that affects his current life.

    I just love this man’s writing he can transport you into a story so fast that it was so hard to let go. There were a couple times I wanted to shake Daniel (when it came to his wife). I enjoyed Fermin’s story and liked how it unfolded. This one didn’t have as much suspense to it just because it pulled in the stories from the first 2 books and it was more ah-ha moments of how everyone & everything fit together.

    This didn’t feel like an ending of this series though so I hope there is another one! Although it was like the end of a chapter I would love more stories from these characters. Also this one seemed to be over quickly and left me wanting more.


    This is a great series and this was a short but satisfying addition.

    4 Stars

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ahmad Hassan Columbus, OH USA 07-23-12
    Ahmad Hassan Columbus, OH USA 07-23-12 Member Since 2007

    phareone21

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "Sets up an exciting conlusion"

    While it is the shortest of the "Cemetary of Forgetten Books" series, The Prisoner of Heaven weaves the tales of The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel's Game seamlessly. When I initially read it, I thought it was the last of the series and was a bit disappointed at the questions that were left unanswered. Then I realized, that it is the third installment of the quartet. While the first two installments stand on their own, the 3rd needs its successor though it ties the first two in such a way that you would never want to read them in isolation without reading the rest of the series. The author insists that the series can be read in any order and The Prisoner of Heaven demonstrates that.

    Zafon's poetic writing returns and brings to light the characters we were so deeply invested in from previous books. However, it should be said that Peter Kenny was not my favorite narrator. Not that he was bad (I gave him 4 stars), but Jonathan Davis was far more animated and really brought Fermin Romero de Torres to life.

    Can't wait for the final installment of this wonderful series.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MEMcL Carlsbad, CA 01-20-13
    MEMcL Carlsbad, CA 01-20-13 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    195
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    50
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    "I am obsessed with this series, and this author!"
    Any additional comments?

    I listened to my first book by this author, and didn't realize that it was the second in a series of three books. (Shadow of the Wind; The Prisoner of Heaven; The Angel's Game) The Spanish names of streets and characters can be confusing at first. But, I love the use of language and beautifully crafted dialogue, as well as the complicated plot. So, I started over, and read all three in the right order.

    There are many questions to be answered, and I found myself going back and listening to previous chapters. The intricate story web is not to be taken lightly, and the characters are so finely drawn, and with wise observations of human nature sprinkled in. What a joy it was to read, and reread these books! I plan to let it rest for a few months and then listen to all three all over again. I know that there are nuggets in there that I missed this time. It was kind of like reading the Count of Monte Christo, or the Man in the Iron Mask. Weighty, wonderful literature and skilled story telling.

    All three books were read by different narrators, but each was wonderful. Of all the Audible Books that I have listened to over the years, this is my favorite and most admired series.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diane Louisville, KY, United States 08-10-12
    Diane Louisville, KY, United States 08-10-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Weakest book of the trilogy"

    I love Zafon's writing and his skill in creating a dream-like sense of reality. The Shadow of the Wind was wonderful, with The Angel's Game close behind. Both of those books had the strength of being marvelous stories which could each stand on their own.

    Unfortunately, this is not the case for The Prisoner of Heaven. I have read both of the earlier books, but it's been a while, and my less than perfect recollection of the plot intricacies of the first two books definitely detracted from my enjoyment of this one.

    The story itself is something of an homage to Dumas' Count of Monte Cristo, and definitely has its magical moments. However, it lacks much of the mystery and complexity of the earlier two novels. I understand Zafon intends to write one more book for this collection. I certainly plan to read it, hoping that he returns to the form which so entranced me in The Shadow of the Wind.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Catie Scarlette The Rock, USA 04-30-14
    Catie Scarlette The Rock, USA 04-30-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    62
    5
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    "Absolutely loved the continuation of the story...."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. It's the third part of a purported four book story line and I have been completely enthralled by it from beginning to the end of this part (listening to each book twice in a row). I can't wait for the last book.


    What other book might you compare The Prisoner of Heaven to and why?

    I'm not sure I have anything in mind to compare it to.


    Which character – as performed by Peter Kenny – was your favorite?

    Kenny's characterizations took some getting used to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I easily could have - I sat in my garage on more than one night, waiting for a better place to stop.


    Any additional comments?

    My only negative comment would be that the narration was not as "fitting" as in the two previous books. Jonathan Davis is exquisite narrating The Shadow of the Wind and Dan Stevens did a good job with The Angel's Game (though after having JUST finished Shadow, Dan's voice took some getting used to). I have listened to Kenny narrate other books and like him, buy I was not a fan of his work here.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JustABookie Alexandria, VA 05-12-13
    JustABookie Alexandria, VA 05-12-13 Member Since 2011
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    "It's just not the same as "Shadow'"

    I read Zafon's first novel "The Shadow of the Wind" the year I lived in Spain (2005) both in Spanish and English. It is perfect. It's one of the best books I have ever read. Then, when I returned to the US, I discovered that he'd written a second book. It was with great excitement that I rushed out to read it. I was so disappointed because Zafon managed to take what was so perfect about "Shadow" and destroy it piece by piece with "The Angel's Game" . Knowing this, it was with a great deal of trepidation that I embarked on reading "Prisoner".

    On it's own merits, this book is quite good. The story that stands by itself is the back story of Fermin Romero de Torres. However, once again Zafon managed to chip away at the universe that he so deftly created in "Shadow" and take away from what had been such a perfect world.

    The narration of the book is quite good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Edison Los Angeles, CA, United States 04-15-13
    Edison Los Angeles, CA, United States 04-15-13 Member Since 2011
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    "What a disappointment!!!"

    I have no words... Shadow of the Wind was so great that, I expected nothing else of Prisoner of Heaven... maybe the next one will conclude it... left me wondering...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Cape Canaveral, FL 08-13-12
    Amazon Customer Cape Canaveral, FL 08-13-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Compelling Listen"
    Would you listen to The Prisoner of Heaven again? Why?

    I would definitely listen again, the characters, story, setting, narration, everything about this kept me hooked and listening.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I think Sempere's son was extremely compelling as his humanity was so powerfully simple to relate to.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jenn Gardnerville, NV United States 08-01-12
    Jenn Gardnerville, NV United States 08-01-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A wonderful 3rd Installment"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would absolutely recommend this book to a friend, but only a friend that has read the other two books in the series. While The Prisoner of Heaven and the Angel's Game are often billed as being able to stand on their own as complete stories, this claim isn't entirely accurate. They do function as mostly self-contained in their respective plots, but the significance and implications of certain events is lost if the reader is not familiar with the events from the previous installments.


    What about Peter Kenny’s performance did you like?

    His voice for Valls was absolutely perfect for the character: soft, but still menacing.


    If you could take any character from The Prisoner of Heaven out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Fermin. He's got the best stories.


    Any additional comments?

    Since the book are so interrelated, it may be a good idea to be fresh about what happened in the other books. I really wish I had re-read Shadow of the Wind and the Angel's Game before starting this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    T&L Seattle, Washington 08-16-12
    T&L Seattle, Washington 08-16-12 Member Since 2012

    Avid Reader

    ratings
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    7
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    Story
    "Wonderful Narration!"
    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I loved Fermin! He tells a story of his time in jail, which is reminiscent of the Count of Monte Cristo (he even mentions it), and I absolutely loved it. Some reviewers didn't like this aspect, but I thought it was awesome.


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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