The Library of Shadows, Paperback Book
3 out of 5 (11 ratings)


Imagine that some people have the power to affect your thoughts and feelings when you read, or they read a book to you.

They can seduce you with amazing stories, conjure up vividly imagined worlds, but also manipulate you into thinking exactly what they want you to. When Luca Campelli dies a sudden and violent death, his son Jon inherits his second-hand bookshop, Libri di Luca, in Copenhagen.

Jon has not seen his father for twenty years since the mysterious death of his mother. When Luca's death is followed by an arson attempt on the shop, Jon is forced to explore his family's past.

Unbeknown to Jon, the bookshop has for years been hiding a remarkable secret.

It is the meeting place of a society of booklovers and readers, who have maintained a tradition of immense power passed down from the days of the great library of ancient Alexandria.

Now someone is trying to destroy them, and Jon finds himself in a fight for his life and those of his new friends.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Thriller / suspense
  • ISBN: 9780552775021

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Showing 1 - 5 of 11 reviews.

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Review by

While the criticism of many others about the ending is quite justified, this story of the power of books to move people caught me up and I had great difficulty letting it go (If the last section had been a bit stronger this would easily have crept into the 4.5 or 5* range)The story opens up with a bookseller, Luca Campelli, being literally captivated by a book, followed by his death. Then the focus moves to his son Jon Campelli, a lawyer, who has been estranged from his father for years and now owns his father's bookshop Libri di Luca.He finds himself caught up in a world he never knew about, a world where people can use books to influence others, to bring pictures in their minds of what's in the book and to sometimes change their minds. However there are the people like those who killed his father who aren't exactly nice about this ability, who want to use it for power and influence.I really did enjoy this story, the descriptions of reading and being caught up in a book really did reflect the reality of being caught up in a book and ramped it up a bit. A book for book-lovers.

Review by

A good book about the power of literature, and some of the ideas were interesting. I found myself wanting to enjoy it so much more than I did though. The plot 'twists' were fairly predictable, none of the characters really appealed to me, and the romantic sub plot felt like it had been shoved in because the author thought there should be some romance somewehere in there. Overall this is an ok book, but not one i will be revisiting.

Review by

This is an enchantingly unique tale of mystery, romance and supernatural forces brought to fruition by the power of reading. The prose is excellently constructed and fully engages the reader with this extraordinary plot. The translator must be fully commended on capturing the themes and moods laid down by the author in what I can only imagine must be a wonderfully crafted Danish original. The middle portions of the story however lacked elements of suspense, for my own personal liking, and I would have preferred for chapters to leave the plot hanging more at the end, rather than following on in real-time from chapter to chapter. However this is a very minor criticism on what is a truly wonderful piece of literature which I fully recommend to fellow bibliophiles and maybe, just possibly any Lectors out there(?)…

Review by

It wasn't what I was expecting after reading the jacket cover. I thought it'd be a simple murder mystery surrounding the owner of a bookstore, but it quickly turned out to be much more.A hidden society of bibliographers with a difference. One where individuals with specific gifts for enhancing the reading experience, whether they be the ones reading out aloud, or the ones listening to something being read. Transmitters, the ones with the gift for accentuating certain words in the text they are reading and receivers, individuals who help focus a transmitter's mind to the images that he creates while he reads, all of which results in holding the audience in their grip, open to their suggestions or swallowed in the story unfolding before them.What if these gifts were to be exploited by the nefarious? Are these gifts and harnessing them important enough to manipulate some and murder others? Will good triumph over the power hungry? Is it even possible that books can be charged with an energy after many readings? The only negative criticisms I would levy against this book are that I wish the last chapter was a lot stronger and that the author did a better job at describing the conclusion of the final battle.

Review by

Too much in the realms of science fiction for my taste, fiction for me has to have some credibility.

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