- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins (1995)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780722532935
- ISBN-13: 978-0722532935
- ASIN: 0722532938
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.4 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 1,900 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Alchemist: A Fable About Following Your Dream Paperback – 8 Mar 2012
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Like the one-time bestseller Jonathan Livingston Seagull, The Alchemist presents a simple fable, based on simple truths and places it in a highly unique situation. And though we may sense a bestselling formula, it is certainly not a new one: even the ancient tribal storytellers knew that this is the most successful method of entertaining an audience while slipping in a lesson or two. Brazilian storyteller Paulo Coehlo introduces Santiago, an Andalucian shepherd boy who one night dreams of a distant treasure in the Egyptian pyramids. And so he's off: leaving Spain to literally follow his dream.
Along the way he meets many spiritual messengers, who come in unassuming forms such as a camel driver and a well-read Englishman. In one of the Englishman's books, Santiago first learns about the alchemists--men who believed that if a metal were heated for many years, it would free itself of all its individual properties, and what was left would be the "Soul of the World." Of course he does eventually meet an alchemist, and the ensuing student-teacher relationship clarifies much of the boy's misguided agenda, while also emboldening him to stay true to his dreams. "My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer," the boy confides to the alchemist one night as they look up at a moonless night.
"Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself," the alchemist replies. "And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity."
‘His books have had a life-enhancing impact on millions of people.’ THE TIMES
‘One of the few to deserve the term Publishing Phenomenon.’ INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
‘Coelho’s writing is beautifully poetic but his message is what counts… he gives me hope and puts a smile on my face.’ DAILY EXPRESS
‘I love The Alchemist.’ OPRAH WINFREY
‘The Alchemist is a beautiful book about magic, dreams and the treasures we seek elsewhere and then find on our doorstep.’ MADONNA
"I feel like the luckiest man on the planet. It's a dream come true for me," to be able to direct and star and bring Coelho's book to the screen." LAURENCE FISHBURNE on the upcoming film adaptation of The Alchemist
"One of my favourite books is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, and I just believe that…I can create whatever I want to create. If I can put my head on it right, study it, learn the patterns…I feel very strongly that we are who we choose to be." WILL SMITH
"When I'm on the set with young actors and sometimes you meet people in life who you feel they are a little confused and they want to be re-centered, there are two books that I always recommend. One of them is Siddhartha, and the other is The Alchemist. RUSSELL CROWESee all Product description
From the Publisher
Combining magic, mysticism, wisdom and wonder into an inspiring tale of self-discovery, The Alchemist has become a modern classic, selling millions of copies around the world and transforming the lives of countless readers across generations.
Paulo Coelho's masterpiece tells the mystical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure. His quest will lead him to riches far different—and far more satisfying—than he ever imagined. Santiago's journey teaches us about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, of recognising opportunity and learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, most importantly, to follow our dreams.
Paulo Coelho was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1947. Having travelled extensively throughout Latin America, as well as Europe and North Africa, he was at various times a playwright, a theatre director , and a popular songwriter for some of Brazil’s most famous pop musicians. With the publication of his first books, The Pilgrimage (1987) and The Alchemist (1988) he embarked on a career that would establish him as Brazil’s well known novelist. His books have sold more than 21 million copies world wide and have been translated into 42 languages. He has received numerous literary from a wide variety of countries. His books dominate the bestseller lists in France, Italy, Germany and Greece.
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Category: Fantasy, Inspirational
Synopsis: Santiago the shepherd boy has a recurring dream about a treasure awaiting him at the Pyramids of Egypt. Leaving his flock and the life he knows behind, he sets out on an adventure to seek out this mysterious treasure. However, the people he meets along the way will teach him lessons far more valuable than any wealth or riches. The Alchemist is an inspirational tale about following your dreams.
Often I will skip through author introductions, but I am so glad that I read Paulo Coelho’s introduction to The Alchemist. It was amazing to hear how the book has journeyed from selling only one copy in its first month to becoming the most translated book in the world! Such a story of perseverance enhances the message of optimism and following your dreams. In the introduction, it is clear that Coelho has a very special way of viewing the world and I knew that I was going to be inspired.
Even if my neighbour doesn’t understand my religion or understand my politics, he can understand my story. If he can understand my story, then he’s never too far from me.
Everyone will find an inspirational message in The Alchemist that speaks to them on some level. For me, this was the fable told by the alchemist about a boy who goes on a pilgrimage to visit a wealthy man who knows the secret of happiness. When he arrives, he is given a spoon with three drops of oil and tells him to walk around the palace grounds. However, the boy is so intent on not spilling the oil that he does not enjoy the magnificent opulence and views of the palace.
The secret of happiness is to see all the marvels of the world, and never to forget the drops of oil on the spoon.
However, as the book progressed I started to find the philosophical messages a little heavy-handed. Though beautifully written and poignant, they began to interfere with the flow of the story for me. There are certainly elements of a self-help book in The Alchemist so I would suggest reading it if you are specifically looking to be inspired, rather than simply getting lost in a story for fiction’s sake.
I expected The Alchemist to be a bit obscure and an intellectually challenging read. In fact, I found reading it a relaxing experience. Although it often waxes philosophical, the story is easy to follow and absorb. It gave me a warm, comforting feeling, so perhaps would be a wonderful read when in need of a bit of a pick-me-up. I particularly liked the ending, which was unexpected yet satisfyingly complete.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho Inspirational Quote
The variety of people Santiago meets on his quest makes the novel feel almost like a collection of stories coming together to form the whole. Nevertheless, it is definitely a plot-centric book, with the characters existing mainly to further the plot and Coelho’s wider message. There is a deep sadness in how Santiago meets so many people who have settled in unfulfilled lives and given up on their dreams.
The Alchemist is a beautifully written story that has a timeless, mythical quality. It is easy to see how it has captivated people around the world; the book would be a perfect companion for anyone looking to change their outlook on life and reach for their dreams.
You will never be able to escape from your heart. So it is better to listen to what it has to say.
Read if: you would like to be inspired to follow your dreams by an adventure story unlike any other.
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