The internationally acclaimed, New York Times bestselling author returns to the magnificent universe he constructed in his bestselling novels The Shadow of the Wind, The Angel's Game, and The Prisoner of Heaven in this riveting series finale--a heart-pounding thriller and nail-biting work of suspense which introduces a sexy, seductive new heroine whose investigation shines a light on the dark history of Franco's Spain.
In this unforgettable final volume of Ruiz Zafón's cycle of novels set in the universe of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books, beautiful and enigmatic Alicia Gris, with the help of the Sempere family, uncovers one of the most shocking conspiracies in all Spanish history.
Nine-year-old Alicia lost her parents during the Spanish Civil War when the Nacionales (the fascists) savagely bombed Barcelona in 1938. Twenty years later, she still carries the emotional and physical scars of that violent and terrifying time. Weary of her work as an investigator for Spain's secret police in Madrid, a job she has held for more than a decade, the twenty-nine-year old plans to move on. At the insistence of her boss, Leandro Montalvo, she remains to solve one last case: the mysterious disappearance of Spain's Minister of Culture, Mauricio Valls.
With her partner, the intimidating policeman Juan Manuel Vargas, Alicia discovers a possible clue--a rare book by the author Victor Mataix hidden in Valls' office in his Madrid mansion. Valls was the director of the notorious Montjuic Prison in Barcelona during World War II where several writers were imprisoned, including David Martín and Victor Mataix. Traveling to Barcelona on the trail of these writers, Alicia and Vargas meet with several booksellers, including Juan Sempere, who knew her parents.
As Alicia and Vargas come closer to finding Valls, they uncover a tangled web of kidnappings and murders tied to the Franco regime, whose corruption is more widespread and horrifying than anyone imagined. Alicia's courageous and uncompromising search for the truth puts her life in peril. Only with the help of a circle of devoted friends will she emerge from the dark labyrinths of Barcelona and its history into the light of the future.
In this haunting new novel, Carlos Ruiz Zafón proves yet again that he is a masterful storyteller and pays homage to the world of books, to his ingenious creation of the Cemetery of Forgotten, and to that magical bridge between literature and our lives.
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About the Author
Carlos Ruiz Zafon is the author of several novels, including the international phenomenon The Shadow of the Wind. His work has been published in more than forty countries, translated into thirty different languages, and honored with numerous international awards, including the Edebe Award, Spain's most prestigious prize for young adult fiction. He divides his time between Barcelona and Los Angeles.
Daniel Weyman is an actor and an AudioFile Earphones Award-winning narrator. He has appeared on stage in Sam West's Sheffield Crucible production of As You Like It and the Chichester Festival Theatre's production of David Edgar's The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby. His portrayal of the title character earned him a nomination for Best Performance in a Play at the 2006 TMA Awards. His television appearances include Colditz and the BAFTA-winning BBC drama Dunkirk. In 2010 he played Tom Jackson in his first lead movie role in the film Just Ines.
A colossal achievement...a genre-crossing delight...Ruiz Zafon's trick is to have linked multiple genres-fantasy, historical, romance, meta-fictional, police-procedural, and political-through prose of atmospheric specificity.-- "Guardian (London)"
From monstrous evildoers to innocent children, lovesick devotees to desperate victims, grieving parents to lost souls, Weyman embraces all manner of characters with energetic aplomb.-- "Booklist (starred audio review)"
A mystery, a love letter to books, and a magical adventure all wrapped up in one, this book is a masterful work of literature that will invigorate your love of reading.-- "Bustle"
The sublime culmination to a truly outstanding series...a reading experience not to be missed.-- "Publishers Weekly (starred review)"
Ruiz Zafon brings his sprawling Cemetery of Forgotten Books tetralogy to a close...A satisfying conclusion to a grand epic that, of course, will only leave its fans wanting more.-- "Kirkus Reviews (starred review)"