Melbourne Writers’ Festival

The Age has a wrap-up of the Melbourne Writers’ Festival, and it seems that Carlos Ruiz Zafon was quite the hit. I think one of the best parts about Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind is its first chapter, the moment when the cemetery of forgotten books is introduced. At the festival, Zafon shares how he got the idea for this unusual bookstore.

Crucial to his novel, which has a love of reading and a mystery at its heart, is a ‘cemetery of forgotten books’ that was inspired by a visit to a labyrinthine Los Angeles second-hand book warehouse.
Ruiz Zafon found an old Theodore Dreiser novel and out slipped a love letter from the 1920s. His immediate thought was the book had not been touched since then, prompting thoughts on the destruction of ideas, notions of identity and the past. And so he dreamt up ‘the cemetery’.