Synopses & Reviews
Paulo Coelho's enchanting novel has inspired a devoted following around the world, and this tenth anniversary edition, with a new introduction from the author, will only increase that following. This story, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids. Along the way he meets a Gypsy woman, a man who calls himself king, and an alchemist, all of whom point Santiago in the direction of his quest. No one knows what the treasure is, or if Santiago will be able to surmount the obstacles along the way. But what starts out as a journey to find worldly goods turns into a discovery of the treasures found within. Lush, evocative, and deeply humane, the story of Santiago is an eternal testament to the transforming power of our dreams and the importance of listening to our hearts.
"[I]t's an interdenominational, transcendental, inspirational fable in other words, a bag of wind....A message clings like ivy to every encounter; everyone, but everyone, has to put in their two cents' worth....The absence of characterization and overall blandness suggest authorship by a committee of self-improvement pundits." Kirkus Reviews
At last — the unabridged recording of this timeless bestseller that has sold millions. "To realize one's destiny is a person's only obligation". This quote taken from The Alchemist sums up what the book is all about. The journey that life should be, is lived by a simple shepherd who finds that life's gifts lie within us all.
"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 far 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.
The Alchemist is a magical story of Santiago, an Audalusian shepherd boy who travels in search of a worldly treasure. 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.
About the Author
Paulo Coelho was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the city where he now lives. His own life has in many ways been as varied and unusual as the protagonists of his internationally acclaimed novels. Like them, Paulo Coelho has followed a dream in a quest for fulfillment. His own dream, to be a writer, met with frustration throughout much of his early adult life, a time in which he worked at various professions, some of them materially rewarding but spiritually unfulfilling. "I always knew," he says, "that my Personal Legend, to use a term from alchemy, was to write." He was 38 when he published his first book.
In 1970, after deciding that law school was not for him, he traveled through much of South America, North Africa, Mexico, and Europe. Returning to Brazil after two years, he began a successful career as a popular songwriter. In 1974, he was imprisoned for a short time by the military dictatorship then ruling in Brazil. In 1980, he experienced one of the defining moments of his life: he walked the 500-plus-mile Road of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain. On this ancient highway, used for centuries by pilgrims from France to get to the cathedral said to house the remains of St. James, he achieved a self-awareness and a spiritual awakening that he later described in The Pilgrimage.
Paulo Coelho once said that following your dream is like learning a foreign language; you will make mistakes but you will get there in the end. In 1988, he published The Alchemist, a novel that explores this theme, and it launched him as an international bestselling author. Specifically, Paulo Coelho is recognized for his powerful storytelling technique and the profound spiritual insights he blends seamlessly into his parables. Since then, The Alchemist has sold more than 11 million copies worldwide and has been translated into some 41 languages. In addition to The Pilgrimage and The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho has written luminous novels about the different streams of our lives, including By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept, The Valkyries, The Fifth Mountain, and Veronika Decides to Die. A winner of numerous literary prizes, Paulo Coelho is also a prominent speaker for humanitarian causes. In 1999, he received a Crystal Award for Artistic Achievement at the Davos Economic Forum Conference.
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Paulo Coelho nació en Brasil y es uno de los autores más leídos internacionalmente. El Alquimista, su libro más famoso, ha vendido mas de 35 millones de copias en todo el mundo y ha sido traducido a cincuenta y cuatro idiomas. Ha recibido destacados premios y menciones internacionales como el Planetary Arts Award, el Crystal Award concedido por el foro Económico Mundial y la prestigiosa distinción Chevalier de l'Ordre de la Legión d'Honneur del gobierno francés. Coelho escribe una columna semanal sindicada en el mundo entero. Actualmente, vive en Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.