The Alchemist Paperback – April 25, 1993
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“An adventure story full of magic and wisdom.” (Rudolfo Anaya, author of Bless Me, Ultima)
“A touching, inspiring fable.” (Indianapolis Star)
“A magical little volume.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
“[This] Brazilian wizard makes books disappear from stores.” (New York Times)
“[His] books have had a life-enchanting effect on millions of people.” (London Times)
“A beautiful story with a pointed message for every reader.” (Joseph Girzone, author of Joshua)
“As memorable and meaningful as Saint-Exupery’s The Little Prince.” (Austin American-Statesman)
“A sweetly exotic tale for young and old alike.” (Publishers Weekly)
“A most tender and gentle story. It is a rare gem of a book.” (Gerald G. Jampolsky, M.D., co-author of Change Our Mind, Change Your Life)
From the Back Cover
"My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer," the boy told the alchemist one night as they looked up at the moonless sky." Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams."
Every few decades a book is published that changes the lives of its readers forever. The Alchemist is such a book. With over a million and a half copies sold around the world, The Alchemist has already established itself as a modern classic, universally admired. Paulo Coelho's charming fable, now available in English for the first time, will enchant and inspire an even wider audience of readers for generations to come.
The Alchemist is the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found. From his home in Spain he journeys to the markets of Tangiers and across the Egyptian desert to a fateful encounter with the alchemist.
The story of the treasures Santiago finds along the way teaches us, as only a few stories have done, about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, above all, following our dreams.
- Item Weight : 7.2 ounces
- Paperback : 197 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9780061122415
- ISBN-13 : 978-0061122415
- Product Dimensions : 5.31 x 0.52 x 8 inches
- Publisher : HarperOne; 1st Edition (April 25, 1993)
- Language: : English
- ASIN : 0061122416
- Best Sellers Rank: #24,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Oh man, was that a mistake. It didn't do any of those things (and apparently kids these days don't actually read their summer reading, what a shame). Instead, I fell deeply in love with this book and have read it three times in the last two years. It's the kind of book that works on more than one level - you have your hero who goes on an adventure, learning from a wise mentor, hitting roadblocks, coming to know himself and the world around him before realizing that his true treasure was in himself all along, and if that's all you get out of the book, then that's fine, but there's more going on here.
The difficulty of the book is figuring out what that more is. The book constantly suggests and hints at lessons that seem at once a comment on ethics and metaphysics, history and anthropology, post-colonialist critique and folk fairy tale. Biblical allusions abound next to Islamic lessons on the nature of God while institutions and mysticism are equally likely to be evoked and revoked. There's always the sense as you read that there is something lingering under the surface, but the minute that you try to grab it (or write it in a review) it seems to disappear.
That seems to be the point of the book, that the message is clear if you read it without trying to grab it. Hold it loosely and it comes easily, try to describe it and it flits away. The book is allusive; it works on you without seeming to, and at the end you're left both satisfied as the adventure concludes and also wanting more, or perhaps wanting to do more. Perhaps that's why I like this book so much - it doesn't yield its secrets easily, or perhaps it yields it too easily, and you finish wondering where your heart and your treasure lie and what your personal legend might be. I imagine that this book might say more about its reader than its text: when you know your own heart and your own journey well enough, perhaps this will only remain a passing, although enjoyable fairy tale.
I'm not done reading it yet, but when I started. I read like the first 80 pages nonstop. Really soak in the message and lessons. I can't wait to finish this book.
So, I finally finished the book. And wow, never would have I thought, a book would have such an impact on me. It's a simple tale but filled with lessons if you are seeking it. I read it in like 3 sittings. I'm not much of a reader and just starting to appreciate it, and I am glad this was one of the books I read. Love it.
Maybe I miss the point. Kinda like Dave Ramsey’s stuff—if you’re already living life like you should then this tale is monotonous.
You can read the synopsis. The story is ludicrous from the beginning, but I persevered through the gypsy and the king and the desert and the oasis and then the alchemist. Treasure? Like it had been under his nose all the time and because he was so in sync with the world and learned all these things he found it buried in his own back yard and went back to get the girl—just another he’d run into with a pretty face. Good grief.
This is my take. Instead of the sheep and Bedouins and emerald tablets the author would have been better putting his magical life altering quotes in a little book. Some people may need the tale. I am religious and don’t get the relationship of God and turning oneself into the wind.
Lola gets this one back as a chew toy. Not going on my library of keepers.
Top reviews from other countries
The story is about a boy from Andalsuia and his adventures through African desert to find treasure in Pyramids of Egypt. One can easily relate with the story because we all have our own goals and this book will teach you that no matter how many obstacles come in your way you should never give up
As per the quality of book goes, It's not that great, Pages are low quality. But the texts are readable without getting strain in your eyes. So I can say the quality of book is okay
I'm giving 4 star because of the low quality of the book.
I hope this review will help you in your buying decision.
The story is that of a shepard boy named, Santiago ,from Andulasia. The boy embarks upon a journey in search of a treasure that he had dreamt of. Each one of us are, infact, Santiago, unable to realise when and where we spilt 'the spoon of oil '. As you go through the book you learn that all is not lost and there is hope.
Narrated in a simple lucid manner,the story is interspersed with metaphors ,fables and allegories. Compelling, interesting and full of hope and positivity, The Alchemist is a bedrock of inspiration that instills a strong sense of faith in yourself.
Such is the power of this book that you will want to read it again and again. Paulo Coelho has an uncanny knack to soothe your soul and boost your morale. This book, in my opinion, should be read by everyone, young and old, atleast once .
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.