Reading The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho had been at the back of my mind since seeing it listed in the BBC Big Read top 100 books while living in the UK during 2003.
When I finally read it unlike The Da Vinci Code there was substance behind the hype. The Alchemist is now my Favourite Book
A simple yet effective tale about a Spanish shepherd boy who travels across the desert in search of his destiny, the books premise is that you should follow your dream now, not defer it forever into the future and that you make your own luck by striking out to achieve your dream not waiting for luck to come to you
One of the many memorable quotes from the book is:
“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” (Melchizedek, The Old King)
The Alchemist is the most famous work of author Paulo Coelho. It is a symbolic story that urges its readers to follow their dreams. The plot draws largely from an English legend, “The Pedlar of Swaffham”, which has been also used by Leo Perutz in “By Night under the Stone Bridge” and Borges’ Tale of Two Dreamers, collected in Universal History of Infamy.
Many have compared The Alchemist to Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince, a children’s book about another boy, the Prince, who leaves his home in search of greater things, learning valuable lessons about life and love on the way.
I recently read that Coelho’s online activities include promoting free pirated copies of his books on a blog called “Pirate Coelho”. “I always thought that when, at the beginning of your career, you strive to be read, you can’t change your mind later and become greedy about it,” Coelho told Newsweek