1. La sombra del viento (The Shadow of the Wind) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón, 2001.
Ruiz Zafón's international bestseller is set in post-Civil War Barcelona. Atmospheric and exhilerating, it follows the story of a young boy, Daniel Sempere, as he is led into the dark and secretive world of writer Julián Carax.
2. Catedral del Mar (Cathedral of the Sea) by Ildefonso Falcones, 2006.
This classic adventure novel tells the story of a man who moves to Barcelona in the 14th century at the height of the Inquisition, with the construction of Santa Maria del Mar serving as a backdrop to the story.
3. The Spanish Bow by Andromeda Romano-Lax, 2007.
In US writer Romano-Lax’s debut novel, the story of the Civil War and Franco-era Catalunya is told through the eyes of a child cello prodigy who moves to Barcelona at the age of 14.
4. El delantero centro fue asesinado al atardecer (Off side) by Manuel Vasquez Montalbán, 1989.
For Barça fans and murder-mystery lovers alike, detective Pepe Carvalho is called to investigate the death of a new player on the team.
5. El laberinto griego (An Olympic Death) by Manuel Vasquez Montalbán, 1992.
Another Pepe Carvalho mystery, this time set during Barcelona’s buildup to the '92 Olympics.
6. Diario de un hombre humillado (Diary of a Humiliated Man) by Félix de Azúa, 1987.
This perversely funny and often horrifying novel reads as the diary of a man drifting through Barcelona’s underworld in a quest for meaning in his life.
7. Señas de identidad (Marks of Identity) by Juan Goytisolo, 1966
Banned in Spain until after Franco’s death, this elegant masterpiece describes the return of an exile to Barcelona after the Civil War and explores the dispossession felt by many Spaniards during that time.
8. The South by Colm Tóibin, 1990.
Inspired by his time spent in Barcelona, Tóibin reveals the city from the perspective of an exile, a young Irish woman who is fleeing her home to start a new life in Barcelona.
9. Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell, 1938.
Homage to Catalonia is George Orwell's moving account of his experiences in the Spanish Civil War, in which he served from 1936-1937 as a private for the POUM, the Workers' Party of Marxist Unification.
10. Barcelona by Robert Hughes, 1993.
A must for anyone who wants to delve into the city’s past, this highly informed and often opinionated guide to Barcelona takes the reader on a journey through the city’s colourful, and often violent, history.