I am learning Portuguese, and bought both the English and Portuguese versions of this little book. I enjoyed it (in both languages) and recommend it. In the Portuguese version, more than the translated English one, some phrases struck me quite forcefully, in the way that real spiritual insights can. The English version feels a bit more naff and derivative, and I think that is because some of the inspiration behind the writing is lost in translation. As a text for a Portuguese learner, whatever your spiritual opinions (and I think there is nothing here that would offend anyone of any faith or none) it is brilliant. The language is direct, the vocabulary simple, and his usage rehearses most of the verb tenses nicely (most narrative fiction is in the past tense). This has the distinction (maybe not a amazing one) of being the first book I have read from cover to cover in Portuguese. It has also left a few strange traces in my heart, as I am sure many of Paulo Coelho's books do for his readers. Like many spiritual books, it will bear re-reading. My next stop is O Alquimista (Portuguese Edition).