The Angel's Game

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The Angel's Game
El Juego del Ángel
El Juego del Angel.jpg
Book cover
Author Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Country Spain
Language Spanish
Genre Mystery
Publisher Planeta (Spain)
Weidenfeld & Nicolson (UK)
Publication date
April 2008
Media type Print (hardcover and paperback)
Pages 672
ISBN 978-84-08-08118-0
Preceded by The Shadow of the Wind
Followed by The Prisoner of Heaven
Carlos Ruiz Zafón talks about The Angel's Game on Bookbits radio.

The Angel's Game (El juego del ángel, 2008) is a prequel to 2001's The Shadow of the Wind by Spanish author Carlos Ruiz Zafón. Like The Shadow of the Wind, it was translated into English by Lucia Graves, daughter of the poet Robert Graves, and published in 2009.


The Angel's Game is set in Barcelona in the 1920s and 1930s and follows a young writer, David Martin, who is approached by a mysterious figure to write a book. The novel returns to The Cemetery of Forgotten Books in Barcelona's Raval district, and the Sempere & Sons bookshop, from The Shadow of the Wind.


The Canadian Press's Maclean's Magazine placed The Angel's Game as number one for their top ten hardcover fiction books for the week ending July 7, 2009.[1] Marley Walker called it "Zafon's ambitious new historic melodrama."[2] USA Today praised The Angel's Game as "a multi-layered confection that combines undying love, magical realism, meditations on religion, the importance of books and a love affair with the vibrant city of Barcelona."[3]

Andrew Reimer said, "Here is more of the same from the author of The Shadow of the Wind " which "is bound to make his fans whoop with joy." However, he also added, "the climax of this new tale is a bit of a mess, with too many twists and turns and perhaps a few too many corpses."[4]

Aravind Adiga of The Age complained that there was "plenty that is ludicrous, cliched and schematic," but explained that "[l]overs of Barcelona will enjoy Ruiz Zafon's skillful use of that city's architecture--Gothic and Modern."[5]


  1. ^ "Top Ten list", The Canadian Press, 7/9, retrieved 9 March 2011  Check date values in: |date=, |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  2. ^ Walker, Marley (6/21), "Ambitious Historical Melodrama Playfully Entertaining", Winnipeg Free Press, retrieved 9 March 2011  Check date values in: |date=, |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  3. ^ Memmott, Carol (16 June 2009). "Zafen Writes like an Angel in 'Game'". USA Today. 
  4. ^ Riemer, Andrew (6 Jun 2009), "It’s a devil of a game", Sydney Morning Herald, retrieved 9 March 2011 
  5. ^ Adiga, Aravind (Jun 13, 2009), A Shadow of the Shadow, retrieved 9 March 2011 


Ruiz Zafon, Carlos. The Angel's Game. Spain: Planet Editorial, April 17, 2008

External links[edit]