Book Review: The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

July 17, 2012
Article first published as Book Review: Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón on Blogcritics.

The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón is the third book in the Forgotten Books series. The first two books, The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel’s Game have been international best sellers.

The pub­lisher is giv­ing away one copy of this book—use the Raf­fle­copter form at the end of the post to enter.

  • 288 pages
  • Publisher:Harper
  • Language:English
  • ISBN-10:0062206281
Book Review: The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
My rating forThe Prisoner of Heaven5
Buy this book in paper or electronic format
More books by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón (website) is also set in Barcelona, much like the other books. This time though the story toggles between the 1940s and the late 1950s .

This book is almost impossible to put down, if you liked the first two (especially The Shadow of the Wind), you will love this book is it keeps the same storytelling and most of all, the same wonderful sense of humor. The book is shorten than its predecessors, the structure, which as mentioned above still follows a past/present thread is more clearly defined. In the previous books the thread was intermingled and took some getting used in order to follow properly.

Out of the three books, this one is the least self-contained. I would actually recommend reading the other two, especially The Angel’s Game first because The Prisoner of Heaven ties up a lot of loose ends which can only be understood in the reference of the back story and familiarity with the prior books.

I forgot how much I liked the fabulous character of Fermin Romero de Torres, which is quickly becoming one of my favorite literary characters. A romantic at heart, linguist in mind and a dreamer by trade, Fermin’s outrageous and often hilarious observations leave me in envy and awe with a thirst for more.
I remiss not to mention another one of the author’s unsung characters, the city of Barcelona which is revealed, throughout the series in all her grit and glory in both sun and shade.

One could not also forego Zafón’s tributes to previous masterful storytellers. From obvious Dumas to Cervantes, Dickens to Hugo these masters would be proud of the homage paid to them (in purpose or just in this reader’s mind – does it even matter?) in another masterful tale.

The great narrative, prose and wonderful comedic timing continue in the strong tradition of the Forgotten Books series. I read many translated books and I have to say that this series is probably the finest translated (even though I don’t read in Spanish). Usually there are things amiss in foreign books, be it the cultural references, the style or jokes. However, translator Julia Graves hasn’t missed a beat (and if she did, I couldn’t tell), the story flows smoothly without the reader having to stop due to misunderstandings.

Related Reads:
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
The Angel’s Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Daniel Sempere and his wife Bea are content with their life and their beautiful new baby, Julian and that their good friend, Fermin Romero de Torres is about to get married. But when a strange walks into Sempere’s book shop and threatens to divulge a terrible secret about Fermin, their happiness subsides.

Daniel and Fermin go down a path which they might never come back, and if they do, they will never be the same. The story jumps from Barcelona 1957, to 1940 – a terrible time in Spain’s tumultuous history to reveal, piece by piece, more about the characters which we thought we knew.

Buy this book inpaperorelectronicformat
More books by Carlos Ruiz Zafón


  • Give­away ends: July 24, 2012

  • US/Canada Ship­ping Addresses Only

  • No PO Boxes

  • Win­ners will have 24 hours to write back with their address, oth­er­wise an alter­nate win­ner will be picked

Congratulations: name as email

TLC Book Tour forThe Prisoner of Heavenby Carlos Ruiz Zafón :

Zohar – Man of la Book
Dis­claimer: I got this book for free fromTLC Book Tours

BOOK BLOGGERS – Have you read The Prisoner of Heaven? If so link up your review below:

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Wrap Up

The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafón


  • Julie RupertJuly 17, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  • DarleneJuly 17, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    • DarleneJuly 17, 2012 at 9:54 am

      Oops, forgot to leave email:
      darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

  • Angel JenniferJuly 17, 2012 at 9:55 am


    englejenengle at aol

  • KailanaJuly 17, 2012 at 11:30 am

    One of these days I am going to read the other two books in this trilogy. I think I own both of them, but just haven’t got around to them. (No need to enter me in give-away)

  • SarahJuly 17, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Barcelona is a fabulous city and I love Spanish culture, so I am definitely interested in this book (and the other two). thanks for another excellent review.

  • SamanthaJuly 17, 2012 at 11:38 am
  • Kara DJuly 17, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    My grandpa’s from Spain so naturally I have an interest in Spain and everything surrounding it. email: supersonic182(at)gmail(dot)com

  • LilianJuly 17, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    Thank you so much for the giveaway and the review!
    I’m excited to start the series!

    This book caught my eye when I was at the bookstore a few days ago and I couldn’t resist touching the cover.

    • Zohar - Man of la BookJuly 17, 2012 at 8:10 pm

      It’s a very nice cover, but I wonder why they strayed away from the format of the rest of the series.

  • CarlJuly 17, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    I’ve heard that this is an absolutely brilliant book. I’d love to win a copy. Thanks for having this giveaway.


  • RyanJuly 17, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    This was my first experience with his writing, and I’m still not sure what my review is going to say yet.

  • Anita YanceyJuly 18, 2012 at 9:50 am

    Love to read this book. Thanks for the chance.
    Email: ayancey(at)dishmail(dot)net

  • nanJuly 18, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Love this series. Thanks for the giveaway.

  • Stephanie @ Read in a Single SittingJuly 18, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    I still have The Shadow of the Wind on my shelf to read. One of these days! 🙂

  • DeeJuly 18, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Mary WardJuly 19, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Love his books, thanks for the giveaway!

  • Heather J. @ TLC Book ToursJuly 20, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    It’s good to know that the translator did such a great job on this one – that is super important to me.

    Thanks for being on the tour.

  • Booksnob (Laura)July 21, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    I love this author. He is such an excellent writer. Have you read his ebook Rose of Fire that is a prequel to Shadow of the Wind? I highly recommend.
    booksnobsblog at gmail dot com

    • Zohar - Man of la BookJuly 21, 2012 at 10:34 pm

      Yes, I have read Rose of Fire and liked it but I love the whole Cemetery of Forgotten Books idea.

  • AmyJuly 22, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    This is a fantastic giveaway. Thank you!


  • Maegan MorinJuly 23, 2012 at 1:28 am

    Thanks for the great giveaway!!

    megnate at telus dot net

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