Sunday, July 19, 2009

The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (Thoughts)

The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

This is a literary fantasy set in the Barcelona of the 1920s and 1930s. David Martin the main character walks the line between heaven and hell. His life is one of loneliness and darkness haunted by the bad pulp novels he writes.

This book has a wonderful sense of the symbolic. The main character lives in a tower house whose previous inhabitants have all suffered terrible fates. The villain, Andreas Corelli, has piercing eyes and wears a lapel pin in the shape of an angel. There is a nice sense of contradiction as well. David's father who is shot to death in an alley is given a heroic funeral.

The work he is commissoned to write by Andreas Corelli will damn him no matter what he does. It is through the power of literature he is saved. My favorite scene in the novel is where he is taken by a bookstore owner to the cemetery of forgotten books. The description reminds me of old library storage stacks.

This book very much reminds me of the fantastic side of books. Bibliophiles will like the literary allusions. The Angel's Game is well worth reading.


Anonymous said...

I have just finished the Angel's Game and am still thinking about the story. I am so intrigued - is Andres Corelli actually David? (The Inspector notices him wearing an angle pin on his lapel) and is he seeing himself all the time? It is a brilliant book, I love Shadows of the Wind also. Very thought provoking and I feel as though I have just stepped out of Barcelona in the early century back into the modern world. What do others think of this concept of who Andres Corelli really is?

Book Calendar said...

I really liked the book. I think of Andreas Corelli as a form of Lucifer, a fallen angel. Andreas Corelli still is very much an angel in the dark sense. He seems to constantly make David closer to the dark side. David is half way to the side of light and half way to the side of the dark. So he is making a choice. Andreas Corelli kills people who makes mistakes and takes them throughout the story. It feels very much like Andreas Corelli owns many of the people in the story.

susan andrews said...
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