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“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you. ”-Chapter 25. For book lovers, there’s nothing like coming home and disconnecting with a good book. Reading opens the door to new lives, new cultures, and new ways of seeing things. Well in my case this was not the case. I was not a reader at all. I only read the books or textbooks that I had to read, because they assigned them at school or work. I thought reading was boring and that I was not a book reader at all. I thought this until I have this book assignment. I did my research, and I found a book with the characteristics that my Professor asked to complete the assignment. and went to Barns and Noble to buy the book. Which by the way going to this store is the best experience that I had so far this year. I find out about this book “The Shadow Of The Wind) By Carlos Ruiz and translated into English in 2004 by Lucia Graves and sold over a million copies in the UK, after already achieving success on mainland Europe, topping the Spanish bestseller lists for weeks. Then it was sold in the United States and sold over 15 million copies. All these facts got me to buy it right away and start reading it.
Do you think that a book could not make you laugh, cry, enjoy and even suffer in the same way that the protagonist does?Well, this book did. And remember I am not a reader so maybe I am exaggerating this a little bit. When I begin to read the book, I saw myself wrapped up in a series of events that made me continue reading and following the story step by step, since from the beginning of the story the author begins to throw you a series of paragraphs full of intrigue and mystery that make a book completely exiting. Although this book made me feel like I was in there in many moments, but mostly on moments of action and the climax of the story, like I was there with the protagonist experiencing what he did. This book combines a brilliant plot with an excellent writing, it is “a mysterious and literary” set in the Barcelona of the first half of the twentieth century in which he narrates the misadventures of a peculiar character named Daniel Sempere, who was unfolding in a striking and full story of drama, comedy and intrigue to the last page, plot that only this author with his unique and very personal style is able to present. By the way it’s the plot of this book is a story within a story. Which I find fascinating. The book takes place in Barcelona, Spain in 1945. It is set in the years after the Spanish Civil War.
The setting plays a large role in the plot, since it sets the condition of Barcelona during that time period. The actions of the characters in the novel are largely influenced by the effects of the Spanish Civil War. This setting makes me remember my native country “Guatemala”. I was born in Guatemala them moved to California. All my youth years I lived there. So, I experience a similar action of violence that Spain had in 1945. Our problem there in Guatemala is The Gangs and drugs dealers. I know that the statistics of dead by violence are not compare to a Civil War. Although We did have our civil war two decades ago. But I was not born yet during the Guatemalan’s Civil War. So I experience how is like to live in a zone and being afraid of gun shots, being afraid of going out, or even living in my own house. Yes, it was really bad but not always. I remember that Guatemala was so beautiful and fill of landscapes, rivers, volcanoes, all cultural monuments that we as a country where the only ones to have. This made me identify myself with this quote form the book: “I remember the day my father took me to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books for the first time. It was early summer of 1945, and we walked through the streets of a Barcelona trapped beneath ashen skies as dawn poured over Rambla de Santa Monica in a wreath of liquid copper. ”- Pg. 3. Guatemala has all this in Summer Season. With the two characters that I identify myself the most are with the Protagonist “Daniel Sempere”. He does not have a certain age, because he has different ages throughout the book. He has great empathy with most of the characters! His attitudes and thoughts are in keeping with his age.
For example, when he is a child his fears are childish, and he has platonic loves, when he is a teenager you can see that his thoughts betray him. As the protagonist, his objective is to unveil the mystery that arises around another main character, Julian Carax. Daniel Also, has a great audacity and intelligence although he is also very impulsive. I like to think like Daniel, always have that sense of curiosity and find out the truth. This sometimes made me get in trouble. The other Character that I identify myself is Julian Carax. This is because since childhood Julian showed an impressive ability to invent stories considered disturbing, as well as a mature attitude since childhood. I had that characteristic growing up in my family they always told me that I behave like an adult already when I was a kid. The quotes that I love or Identify myself are: “Wars have no memory, and nobody has the courage to understand them until there are no voices left to tell what happened, until the moment comes when we no longer recognize them, and they return, with another face and another name, to devour what they left behind. ” -p428 par 2. I really liked this one why: Because this is the truth about war. It doesn’t matter where you are or where you come from. If you are facing war this becomes a reality.
These are says in Spanish translated to English: p186 “what matters isn’t what one gives but what one gives up”. Connected by a book, and a pen. P424. “what is really killing him is loneliness. Memories are worse than bullets. ” p427 par 1 “Does the madman knows he’s mad? Or are the madmen those who insist on convincing him of his unreason in order to safeguard their own idea of reality?” p444. “so long as we are remembered, we remain alive. ” p446. Why I like them? This is because all of these are “says” that I had hear over the years in Spanish. From my family, Friends, Tv, etc. And the last quote that I find interesting is this one: “Nobody knows much about women, not even Freud, not even women themselves. But it’s like electricity: you don’t have to know how it works to get a shock on the fingers. Come on, out with it. How do you like them? People might not agree with me, but I think a woman should have a feminine shape, something you can get your hands on. You, on the other hand, look like you might be partial to the skinny type, a point of view I fully respect, don’t misunderstand me. ” I think that on these days people will find this offensive and sexiest and diminishing about woman.
This novel is totally a work of art, captivates your senses and transports you to those scenarios in which the plot of this story unfolds, the characters invade your mind, and you begin to really live the book. This a great author and his story will captivate you until the last of his pages. I recommend this book to anyone it doesn’t matter if you are a reader or not, I was not. And here I am. Because of this book I have a new goal in life. Go to the book store get two books to read at least once every month. It this one is one of the best one. I only imagine what are the others about?
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