«I never confessed it to anyone, but I got the flat by a pure miracle. Laura, who had tango kissing, worked as a secretary for the property manager of the first second. I met her one night in July when the sky was burning with steam and despair. I was sleeping in the open, on a bench in the plaza, when the touch of lips woke me up ». With these words brought from the hereafter to the hereafter it starts “The Woman of Steam”, one of the eleven posthumous and largely unpublished stories with which Carlos Ruiz Zafonreturns to bookstores five months after his death.
It is, as the editor Emili Rosales has repeatedly explained, a kind of coda final with which Zafón, who died on June 19, wanted to show his “appreciation” to all those readers who made the saga of the Forgotten Books Cemetery one of the great phenomena of Spanish literature. A new network of tunnels and passageways that connect “The shadow of the wind” with “The labyrinth of the spirits” and that compose eleven independent stories but intimately linked to the Zaphonian literary universe.
Thus, the echo of the characters and themes of Zafón’s novels resonates in a collection that gathers pieces published in magazines or special editions of his own novels and rescues for the occasion three unpublished stories: «Blanca y el adiós», «Sin nombre» and «A young lady from Barcelona». In them, the Barcelona writer throws new clues about twisted secondary parts of “The Angel’s Game”, fantasizes about prequels for the saga itself and adds valuable Gothic touches to crown the tetralogy that revolutionized commercial literature of the late 20th and early 20th centuries. XXI.
For Planeta, publisher that publishes the book, “The city of steam” displays a cartography, a hitherto secret map, which will guide through some of those passages of his work to reveal episodes of the past of its protagonists. «A reading experience full of voices and echoes. Presences that pass through the twilight twilight zones of the Gothic city “, adds the editorial.
“The city of steam” It includes eight other stories that, despite having been published in newspapers and magazines such as “La Vanguardia”, “The New York Times”, “El País” and “Magazine”, remained practically out of circulation. There are, for example, the modernist darkness of “Gaudí in Manhattan”, the Dickensian landscapes of “Christmas Legend” and the black and red Barcelona of “Rosa de fuego”, stories that complete Zafón’s narrative corpus and shed new clues to unravel the mysteries of the series.