Time for another round of Yvo’s Shorties! This time around my first two reads of 2021! A reread of an all time favorite which was just as magical as the first time I read it (The Shadow Of The Wind) and a newer release I ended up having a great time with (The Honey-Don’t List).
Title: The Shadow Of The Wind
(The Cemetery Of Forgotten Books #1)
Author: Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Translator: Lucía Graves
Genre: Historical Fiction, Magical Realism
First published: May 1st 2001
Publisher: Penguin Group
Finished reading: January 3rd 2021
(Originally written in Spanish: ‘La Sombra Del Viento’)
“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.”
I decided to cheat a little and reread an all time favorite as my first book of 2021 so that I could start the year on a high note (especially after that DNF as my final read of 2020). I’ve read The Shadow Of The Wind quite a few times already and in three different languages at that, but I never get tired of it… And my experience with this historical fiction/magical realism piece set in 1940s-1950s Barcelona was just as magical as the previous times. There is just something about this writing that draws you straight in, and the historical setting in Barcelona is excellently described. It feels like you are travelling back in time and walking the streets of this Spanish city yourself along with the main characters… Who are likewise thoroughly developed and really come alive. The Shadow Of The Wind is a book about books, with a mystery author, a bookshop owner and his son and a hidden Cemetery of Forgotten Books. What is not to love? As well as an investigation into the mysterious author Julian Carax, it is also an exploration of love, a coming of age novel and magical realism all wrapped into one magical piece of story. Words cannot describe just how fantastic this first book of a series is, and I cannot recommend it enough.
“Relationships are a lot like houses: without a good foundation, they’ll crumble.”
The Honey-Don’t List has been receiving mixed reviews so I have been curious to see how I would react to it… Last year I read and enjoyed three of their recent titles, and I’m glad to say that this story was just as successful for me. Oh yes, I ended up having an excellent time with this story, and I think part of the reason is that I actually prefer stories with a lesser focus on romance or at least a slowburn romance in the first place? I’ve been told their earlier titles are a lot steamier, and I can understand people expecting that will be disappointed with The Honey-Don’t List as there is not too much of that. I’m glad they decided to take this road with their books though, as their recent books definitely hit the romance mark for me! In The Honey-Don’t List, you see even less romance in the spotlight as the main focus is initially on Melissa and Rusty Tripp and their TV show and book tour. True, the story is told alternating between Carey and James’ POV, but as they are so involved in the lives of their bosses the story reads more like contemporary than full blown romance. I had a great time seeing the story evolve and the slowburn romance development was spot on for me. Just the right dose of steamy scenes not to run away screaming, and just enough fluff to sweeten the deal… The Honey-Don’t List was definitely a perfect romance match for me.