The Shadow of the Wind

The Shadow of the Wind

by

Carlos Ruiz Zafón

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The Shadow of the Wind: City of Shadows: Chapter 21 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
As dusk falls, Daniel makes his way to the university to meet Bea. As he approaches he worries that she will stand him up, but then he finds her waiting for him in the beautiful cloister. She declares that she’s only meeting him to prove that he’s wrong, and she’s dying to marry Pablo and move to El Ferrol. However, she also admits that she was scared to come in case Daniel proves right. Daniel suggests that she’s only marrying Pablo to escape the overbearing Mr. Aguilar.
Daniel and Bea have an instant connection, sharing secrets and analyzing each other even though they’ve only been on speaking terms for a few days. Their quick intimacy suggests that they’re “meant” to be together, rather than two acquaintances coincidentally developing romantic feelings.
Themes
Coincidence and Determinism Theme Icon
They walk to a café and share fried potatoes while Daniel tells Bea the entire story of his obsession with and investigation into Carax. Bea demands that he take her to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books, so they walk there, and Daniel convinces a skeptical Isaac to let Bea in. Daniel shows Bea the place where he has hidden The Shadow of the Wind. Tasked with picking out her own book, Bea chooses Tess of the d’Urbervilles, and says she feels like it’s been waiting for her. Touched that she shared his reaction of many years ago, Daniel kisses her.
It’s interesting and ominous that the book Bea feels she was destined to choose—Tess of the d’Urbervilles—is about a young woman whose life is destroyed following a forbidden sexual encounter. Repeating Daniel’s reaction from many years ago, Bea strengthens the sense that she and Daniel are connected by some predestined order.
Themes
Possessive and Obsessive Love Theme Icon
Coincidence and Determinism Theme Icon
Daniel and Bea walk back to her house in silence. Daniel says he wants to see her again, and she says she’ll find him when she has an unguarded moment. Daniel thinks this has been the best day of his life.
While most of the novel’s romantic relationships are male-dominated, it’s initially unclear whether Daniel or Bea has more power. As a man, Daniel is free to roam the city at will; but the very fact that she’s so sheltered and guarded means that Bea gets to decide when and where to see her new lover.
Themes
Possessive and Obsessive Love Theme Icon