Some years ago now, Corrie and I were staying in our friend Maddie’s room in England and came across a book that looked very interesting. It was a novel set in post war Barcelona and probably the best and most creative novel I have ever read. The book by Carlos Ruiz is called ‘Shadow of the Wind”.

Just after the war, Daniel’s father takes him to the secret Cemetery of Forgotten Books, a huge library of old, forgotten titles lovingly preserved by a select few initiates. According to tradition, everyone initiated to this secret place is allowed to take one book from it and must protect it for life. Daniel selects a book called The Shadow of the Wind by Julián Carax. That morning he takes the book home and reads it and is enthralled.

But there is much more to it.

The boy, Daniel Sempere, in his quest to discover Julian’s other works, becomes involved in tracing the entire history of Carax, thus, unravelling a long story that has been buried within the depths of oblivion. Later, Daniel and a friend come across a love story, the beautiful, yet doomed love story of Julian and Penelope, both of whom seem to having been missing since 1919, that is, nearly thirty years earlier.

And this is just the beginning.

I googled the book and found there was a particular walk in Barcelona that traces Daniel’s journey as he becomes a character in the book rather than the reader. So this morning we went on our own discovery tour taking us down the main thoroughfare to Teatro Principal, then across into the mysterious back streets. We went under archways into huge plazas and others which buildings straddled, gates to a hidden plaza, up blind alleyways, and dropped into Picasso’s museum. Another arch led to a church that was otherwise not to be seen. A few more medieval streets past the 4 cats cafe and other enthralling eating houses, and finally ending up in the palace of music.

All of these places have a part to play in this book. If you would like to complete your own journey at home just buy the book, you won’t regret it.