Monday 1 December 2014

The Watcher in the Shadows by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

One magical summer turns into a nightmare when a young girl discovers the secrets locked into a reclusive toymaker's mansion.
A mysterious toymaker who lives as a recluse in an old mansion, surrounded by the mechanical beings he has created... an enigma surrounding strange lights that shine through the mists that envelop the small island on which the old lighthouse stands... a shadowy creature that hides deep in the woods... these are the elements of a mystery that bind 14-year-old Irene to Ismael during one magical summer spent in the Blue Bay. Irene's mother has taken a job as a housekeeper for the toymaker, Lazarus, but his house contains more secrets than Irene and Ishmael have bargained for.

Published in paperback by Phoenix (part of the Orion Publishing Group) on 9 October 2014.

I have been a huge fan of Carlos Ruiz Zafon's novels for adults for many years. The Shadow of the Wind is one of my all time favourite books, it's very different to my usual read, but holds a special place in my heart - for many reasons.

The Watcher in the Shadows is the third of the novels that Carlos Ruiz Zafon wrote for younger readers at the beginning of his career in the 1990s, and was recently published here in paperback.

Irene Sauvelle moves with her mother and her younger brother to a large house on the coast of Normandy. At first the family seem to have fallen on their feet. Irene's mother will be the housekeeper for Lazarus Jann.  Lazarus is a toymaker, and his house is full of weird and wonderful creations - the perfect place for children to explore ...... or is it?
As Irene falls in love with local boy Ismael, strange things happen. Young girls disappear, shadows appear and menacing, magical forces cause chaos in the forest.

Although the target market is young adults, The Watcher in the Shadows is also perfect for the adult market, especially for those readers who like some gothic horror with some clever creepiness thrown in for good measure. Add that to a great storyline and Carlos Ruiz Zafon's magical writing ability and this is the perfect book to read on a dark evening .... make sure the doors are locked though, as you may find yourself glancing over your shoulder more than once!

My thanks to Leanne from Orion Books who sent my copy for review.

Carlos Ruiz Zafon is the author of six novels, including the international phenomenon The Shadow of the Wind, and The Angel's Game. 

His work has been published in more than forty different languages, and honoured with numerous international awards. He divides his time between Barcelona, Spain, and Los Angeles, California.

For more information about the author and his books, visit his website

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