“Wind, Violin And Spices”


graphic by: Gioia
<<Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it. Every time a book changes hands, every time someone runs his eyes down its pages, its spirit grows and strengthens.>>[1]



The wind howls it creeps under the porticos, raises her skirts, ruffles the hair, creates vortices in the meadows, taking with it yellow, red and brown leaves; it drives the clouds and thickens the seas. Then suddenly it stops and it comes the rain, slow, bored, it fills the spaces with its smell of Autumn by sliding the drops on the windows, getting the objects dirty  and washing away the sins.


In this atmosphere, you have to find the nearest library, one of those with the smell of old books that you can already feel when you enter the atrium, yes, do not make that face, there are still some, few, but there are ! You have to prepare a beautiful soundtrack

  and let the imagination carry you to Barcelona with Daniel Sempere and Julian Carax, the protagonists of one of the most beautiful , poetic, well-written and engaging stories that I have ever read: “The shadow of the windby CR Zafon.


The library is the perfect place, magical, it evokes exactly the atmosphere of the novel that tells of a passionate reader, a cemetery of forgotten books, tumblr_nhrnpt91jk1qft49to1_400a cursed writer and a forbidden love; but if you are one of those ” extremely lazy” and  even with a cannon pull you won’t be taken down from the sofa, I suggest you to prepare at least a nice cappuccino with spices[2] to complete the picture. And please, before making grimaces, taste it, I promise, you will not regret it!


Among the pages of the novel we can find nearly all literary genres: the mystery novel with almost Gothic features, a plot that touches the tips of the sentimental drama, and that at the same time is tinged almost of the spy story hues, until it becomes a satirical work when Zafon gives voice to the character of Fermin Romero de Torres.




<<It’s a story of love, of hatred, and of the dreams that live in the shadow of the wind.>>[3] 



So it is a reading that anyone can approach .

Personally I have to thank my teacher of high school letters for forcing me to read this small masterpiece in the beginning, I reread it about six times since then, and each time I fall more and more in love with the landscapes, the characters, the stories that intertwine, with the poetry with which it speaks of the books.


One of the things that fascinates me most about the novel is that the described places (most at least) really exist: a tiny street in the Raval neighborhood of Barcelona, close to the Boqueria Market is the location where “The Shadow of the Wind” begins, it is the place where the Cemetery of Forgotten Books is located.

In the street Carrer de Montcada we find the restaurant “El Xampanyet”, a well-known haunt in Barcelona where we can eat tapas and a homemade white sparkling named as the local.




<<Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.>>[4]



It’s Autumn. The days are getting shorter, the Summer is behind us and ahead of us there is work, studies, real life again. The holidays are over but thanks to this book you can imagine to be in the warm Spain, and while the wind slams the doors and gray clouds will start crowding  the horizon  you will be  busy following Daniel through the streets of the city, trying to predict the moves of Bea and Clara, to stop Julian. You will have the feeling to be in the novel, and everything else around disappears.

Only one reading it’s not enough, you’ll want more, you will continue to read it every Autumn and you will always discover new interpretations, because this book is like the wind, it gets inside you, letting your thoughts in the storm and as soon as  it walks away you can not breathe.


But don’t worry, you are in the library and you will immediately find another story….




[1] From the book.
[2] Ingredients :
-100 Ml of strong coffee
-200 Ml whole milk
-2 Tablespoons sugar
-1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
-1 Pinch of cinnamon , cloves
-1 Pinch of nutmeg
– 1 pinch of vanilla or a few drops of extract
– 1 orange peel
We boil the milk with the spices over low heat for 10 minutes . Then we remove the clove and orange peel and add the cocoa, sugar and coffee , then we remove from the heat and whisk everything  in order to obtain a foam.
[3] From the book.
[4] From the book.

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