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Danielle Hampson16 June 2011
The Prince of the Mist was published in 1993 but only released in the UK in 2010 after the success of Carlos Ruiz Zafon's other novels 'The Shadow of the Wind' and 'The Angel's Game'. It was written as a book for young adults but I believe this would appeal to all age groups and anyone who enjoys a really good mystery.
1943. 13 year old Max Carver's family escape their war-torn city to an old house by the sea. But great dangers lurk in their new house and its sinister, overgrown garden of circus character statues. Max and his two sisters soon start to experience mysterious events which they feel might be connected to Jacob Fleischman, a young boy whose family previously owned the house, who had drowned years earlier.
Max becomes friendly with Roland, a local older boy who has been raised by his grandfather, Victor Kray. Victor was the sole survivor of a shipwreck years ago, however the boys and Max's sister Alicia believe that the old man has more information than he is letting on about the shipwreck and that it might be linked to the death of Jacob Fleishman. Further investigation reveals the story of 'Cain', a mysterious villain who would grant local children whatever they wanted, in exchange for their undying loyalty. He was known as the 'Prince of the Mist' because he would disappear into the shadows and wouldn't be seen for a long time, but would always reappear just as the locals had forgotten about him. He would always come to collect, even if the person hid for years, Cain would track them down. If they did not fulfil his wishes he would come back to claim it himself or turn their body into stone.
Max believes that Cain was the reason behind Jacob's drowning and all the statues in the overgrown forest garden. The children also realise that they are in danger themselves and that they need to unravel the mystery of the Prince of the Mist before he comes for them.
I am a big fan of Carlos Ruiz Zafon's other work and think he writes beautifully. The Prince of the Mist was written for a younger audience but with its dark story and beautiful writing I think most people would enjoy the book. I love a good mystery and this was the perfect mixture of mystery, romance, suspense and tragedy. It's a fairly short book which is perfect for those who don't have a lot of time or a short attention span! His details really pulls you into the book into another world of mystery and adventure. It left me wanting to read more and I wish that Carlos Ruiz Zafon had some more books I could get my hands on!
I would recommend this book to almost anyone. It's short enough to keep the reader entertained but long enough to draw you in to the story and characters. It is suitable for anyone who enjoys a good story and those who are young at heart. 4/5
Max Carver's father - a watchmaker and inventor - decides to move his family to a small town on the coast to an old house that once belonged to a prestigious surgeon Dr Richard Fleischmann. But the house holds many secrets and stories of its own. Behind it is an overgrown garden full of statues surrounded by a metal fence topped with a six-pointed star. When he goes to investigate Max finds that the statues seem to consist of a kind of circus troop with the large statue of a clown at its centre. Max has the curious sensation that the statue is beckoning to him. As the family settles in they grow increasingly uneasy: they discover a box of old films belonging to the Fleischmanns; his sister has disturbing dreams and his other sister hears voices whispering to her from an old wardrobe. They also discover the wreck of a boat that sank many years ago in a terrible storm. Everyone on board perished except for one man - an engineer who built the lighthouse at the end of the beach. During the dive Max sees something that leaves him cold - on the old mast floats a tattered flag with the symbol of the six-pointed star.As they learn more about the wreck the chilling story of the Prince of the Mists begins to emerge.
From the bestselling author of The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon, this is a haunting story of a ghostly ship and the curse it begins to hold over the recently moved-in Carver family. A thriller that is capable of serving up a scare for all ages, The Prince of Mist is a chilling and eerie tale of a young boy exploring the supernatural.
- Carlos Ruiz Zafon
- 27 May 2010
- Hardcover (Book)
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