Book Review: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Saturday morning I decided to go to the library to find some books on languages. After looking around and not finding what I wanted to find I was about to head out when my eye was caught by this book:

I read a couple of pages, was intrigued by the simple but profound writing and checked it out. I started the book when I arrived home and finished it the next day. It is not a long book, less than 200 pages, but the lessons within could take up volumes and volumes. Without divulging the plot, the story follows the events of a young shepherd who leaves his homeland in Spain and to travel to Egypt to see the Pyramids and find buried treasure. I love stories about traveling through the Sahara, the Pyramids, and buried treasure  so the story-line naturally appealed to me. However, much more than that is the writing itself that made me keep reading. If any of you have read “The Little Prince”  by Antoine Saint Exupery, you’ll understand what I mean when I describe Coelho’s style as simple but profound. “The Alchemist” reminded me very much of the classic by Saint Exupery and it’s no wonder that it has been translated in over 50 languages. I’m just amazed that I’ve never heard about this book. Coelho first published this in his native Brazil in 1988 and then it was translated into English in 1993 and here I am reading it 23 years later. I feel like I’m really late to the party! But if you’re late like me — don’t delay, read it now!

I need to return my copy to the library now, but I will be purchasing a copy of my own. This is the type of book that reveals a little bit more each time you revisit it.




2 thoughts on “Book Review: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

  1. I’ve read it three or four times over the years. I even gave a speech on it! 🙂 I feel that even though it’s too bare-bones, it is worth reading (several times).


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