The Niebla series, Carlos Ruiz Zafón

The Prince of Mist, Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Author: Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Publisher: Phoenix
Pages: 213
Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 0753828553
ISBN-13: 9780753828557
Original title: El príncipe de la niebla
Series: Niebla #1
The Prince of Mist
3 stars

1943. As war sweeps across Europe, Max Carver's father decides to move his family to a small town on the coast, to an old house that once belonged to a prestigious surgeon. But the house is not what it seems like.

I have been curious about Zafón's early work. Unlike his Cemetery of Forgotten books this took me some time to get into to. Maybe because the tone was a bit different than I was used too. Still I ended up reading a very compelling story with a lot of mystery and magic. Parts are scary enough making me wonder if it would be wise reading it right before bed.
I enjoyed Max though he was a bit wise for his age. Sometimes it was hard to believe he was that young. Other characters did not really impress. They where enabling Max to go trough his adventures.

The Midnight Palace, Carlos Ruiz ZafonAuthor: Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Publisher: Phoenix
Pages: 303
Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 075382924
ISBN-13: 9780753829240
Original title: El palacio de la medianoche
Series: Niebla #2
The Midnight Palace
4 stars

Set in Calcutta in the 1930s, The Midnight Palace begins on a dark night when an English lieutenant fights to save newborn twins Ben and Sheere from an unthinkable threat. Despite monsoon-force rains and terrible danger lurking around every street corner, the young lieutenant manages to get them to safety, but not without losing his own life.

The story has a very dark and gripping start. I really enjoyed the description of the train terminal. The story kept me reading with this dark and gloomy atmosphere filled with things around corners. There are many things happening of which it is hard to say if they are real or imaginary.
Ben and his friends make a great group you want to be part of. Though all of the friends have detailed characteristics I found I connected more with the group as a whole than a certain character.

The Watcher in the Shadows, Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Author: Carlos Ruiz Zafón
Publisher: Phoenix
Pages: Paperback
Format: 288
ISBN-10: 0753829258
ISBN-13: 9780753829257
Original title: Las luces de septiembre
Series: Niebla #3
The Watcher in the Shadows
3 stars

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.

There I thought I would like this one best due to the toymaker part. I found it to be a scary story about how far loving someone can go. There is a lot of vulnerability in this story and I found things happening to the children to be a bit to much at times. I found it hard that the children often had to make decisions I found difficult to read.
Like the other books in this series the story depends on atmosphere a lot. Filled with sudden plot twists and surprises.

All books in this series have a very dark and mysterious thing going on. I know I would have read them different if I had read them when I was younger. My perception of danger and scary stuff shifted for sure. The books are well written and they felt a bit like the adventure books I read when I was younger like The Famous Five.
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