I picked this book up on a whim, I read the synopsis online and decided to check it out. From the first page I fell in love with the story and the characters. It is a story of a young boy who gets wrapped up in a book while mourning the loss of his mother. After reading this forgotten book, he goes on a quest to find out more about the author Julian Carax, only to find himself in a web of mystery surrounding this author. He surprisingly finds out that someone has been looking for the books as well, but not to collect and read them, but to destroy them all. He goes around talking to people who have been in contact with the author in his past. The more he finds out the deeper he gets and the more trouble arises for him. He learns more people are intertwined with this author than he expected. Along the way he realizes he is in love with his best friend’s sister, which is more of a side story than a part of the bigger story. There are several other love stories mixed in this novel as well, which takes the story off course sometimes, but at the same time adds to the beauty.
This novel is full of all kinds of twists and turns that you don’t expect are coming. Once you think you have something figured out, such as who the person destroying the books is, you find out you are totally wrong. There is nothing that is predictable within this novel. You can try, but you soon find out you are wrong. Ruiz does a wonderful job describing the character’s appearances as they change as well as their surroundings. He pulls you into the story and setting with his words and captivates you throughout the story, never letting go. There are aspects throughout the novel that make you wonder what importance does it have to the story, then you read father and realize those minor elements are critical to the plot line.
Ruiz creates characters you grow to love and admire. Characters you can relate to and grow attached to and want to know more about. The villain character is exactly that, the villain, even though he is disguised as a man of the law. Even the minor characters are ones that you want to see more of within the novel, characters you want to have a more active role in the story. But then again maybe some become a major player in the story. There are certain parts in the book that don’t seem to fit the story, but they fit the character background. It is an interesting thing for Ruiz to do, but it fits and makes the story even more enjoyable. This novel will keep you in suspense in wondering what is going to happen next. When will the book destroyer be revealed? What happened to Penelope? What is hidden in Julian Carax’ past that everyone wants to hide?
If you like mysterious and suspenseful novels, then this is a good one to pick up. I recommend it to anyone who wants a good read, they cannot put down. This is NOT a book that you can finish in one day, it takes several to get through the almost 500 page novel.
Pros: Not a storyline I've read before, unique and interesting
Cons: There are moments in the story that don't seem to fit but doesn't take from the story.
Bottom Line: This is a definite book that needs to be read.
Rating 5 out of 5