I love Barcelona—really who doesn’t love Barcelona—but not just for the obvious reasons. Everyone is enamored with the city’s spectacular architecture, fabulous art, great music, and who wouldn’t kill for the tapas. Me too, but I’m also fascinated by Barcelona’s literary heritage and amazing bookshops. So, I was saddened to hear that last week an important piece of that heritage disappeared.
For more than 82 years, the amazing Libreria Cervantes-Canuda offered an intoxicating mix of titles in every conceivable genre. Crammed with over 200,000 books, the bibliophile’s dream of a bookstore even inspired Carlos Ruiz Zafron’s international bestseller The Shadow of the Wind.
Cervantes-Canuda was apparently another victim of Spain’s ongoing recession and the rising rents in Barcelona’s Barri Gotic. Sadly, many bookshops around Spain have also been hit by the same double whammy. In Barcelona alone, tow other historic bookshops have also been shuttered this year.
Now it seems that a visit to Zafron’s Cemetery of Forgotten Books is only possible by travelling through the pages.