Monday, March 9, 2015

Twisty Mystery with Shades of Classics

Title: The Prisoner of Heaven
Author:  Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Publisher: Harper Perennial
ISBN: 978-0062206299
Pages: 304

Many years ago I read Carlos Ruiz Zafón’s The Shadow of the Wind based on a recommendation from a friend, and knowing that a lot of book clubs were reading it.  At first I struggled to get into the book, with some very long descriptive passages. But, I was eventually drawn into the idea of a Cemetery of a Forgotten books.  Since then, I’ve wondered what book I would select to be mine.  I don’t know yet.

When I was in New York, I found The Prisoner of Heaven in a used bookstore.  I wasn’t even looking for it. I was a little worried about reading the books out of order, considering there is another book between them – The Angel’s Game.  However, The Prisoner of Heaven promised that each book could stand alone, and the reader did not need to read them in order.  Fortunately, I took that advise and read The Prisoner of Heaven.

Daniel is all grown up with a wife and son.  He works with his widowed father at the bookstore, along side Fermin, who is soon to be married.  However, a creepy stranger enters the store and purchases a very expensive book and signs a scary, cryptic message for Fermin. Daniel begins to investigate and hears the full tale of Fermin’s life before the first book.  With shades of The Count of Monte Cristo, Fermin’s background returns to potentially ruin his marriage.  However, Daniel steps in to try and help investigate and free Fermin from his fear.  

I was entranced by the book – it had delightful language and an intriguing plot. I couldn’t put it down and anticipated picking it up when I had to put it down. Now I need to find the second one to see if it was just as good.