Friday, 3 June 2011

9+: The Midnight Palace - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Release Date: 02/06/11


The book begins with a chase through the streets of Calcutta in May 1916. Lieutenant Peake pauses for breath outside the ruins of the Jheeter's Gate station knowing that he only has a few hours to live. Inside his overcoat he is sheltering two newborn babies - twins, a boy and a girl. Peake entrusts them Aryami Bose. Sixteen years later we meet the boy, Ben, and his friends. They have formed a secret club, The Chowbar Society, which meets each week at midnight in the old ruin they have christened The Midnight Palace. Then Aryami Bose turns up with Sheere, Ben's sister, and tells them the story of the parents they never knew. Their father was an engineer and writer who died in tragic circumstances at the inauguration of Jheeter's Gate station. But as the novel unfolds, there is more to their history than meets the eye and they are lured by a shadowy figure from the past into a final showdown in the ruins.


Having loved Carlos’ first title last year I really couldn’t wait to see what would occur with this book and pretty much started after I realised what it was. As with the previously its devilishly clever, lovingly thought out and with a cracking cast and story arc that translates to English beautifully.

Add to this a cracking sense of whimsy, top notch descriptions alongside a decent pace which will leave the reader in no doubt about the scary yet enlightened story that they’re about to embark upon. If you haven’t yet read Prince of Mist then please do so, you won’t regret it and this title just goes to prove how good a writer Carlos is.

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