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The Alchemist - 10th Anniversary Edition Paperback – Apr 12 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Harperone; 1 edition (April 12 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061122416
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061122415
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 249 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (791 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #56 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Amazon

Amazon.co.uk Review 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."

From Publishers Weekly

Brazilian writer Coelho has published five titles in 45 languages in 120 countries, and has sold 23 million books. It's easy to see why. This charming, simple and well-written allegory tells of a boy, Santiago, who has the imagination and courage to follow his "Personal Legend." Santiago finds fairy godfathers at many turns who help him learn to keep up his courage, and to read omens and his own heart. The book's inspirational message follow your heart and do your own thing is oblique enough, to allow readers to interpret it in any way they choose, with whatever degree and form of spirituality one adheres to: "To realize one's destiny is a person's only obligation." But apparently only men need apply; a woman's destiny is to wait for her hero to find his treasure and return home to her. The real treasure here is Jeremy Irons. His intriguing, subtle and powerful performance carries us along on the boy's adventures, into his confusions and insights, through discussions with kings and animals, through the desert and the sun and even through the philosophical passages. Based on the Harper San Francisco hardcover.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Carolyn TOP 500 REVIEWER on Oct. 31 2014
Format: Paperback
When a book is as infamous as “The Alchemist”, debaters are no surprise. However I don’t consider simplicity a downside; a lack of depth. The word “basic” is the root of “base instincts” and “base emotions”. These are the core of who we are and a core equates profundity. A single-threaded fable is the hinge onto which authors hang important principals; why the message of children’s stories are more complex than the adventure carrying them. I put aside this novel a long time, expecting uppity scholastics. I was thrilled I could coast and soak up the nuggets that resonated with me.

Let’s dispense with critical analysis and just consider this: few of us have careers in what we love doing best; what our most natural talent is. We don’t dare take a pay cut in pursuit of it, we don’t want in-laws leering at us; we accept the most lucrative jobs among those readily available and stick there for life. I’m certain Paulo Coelho is addressing we, who dream of writing; who hesitate to believe we can be published authors.

We permit roadblocks to overrule treasured hobbies too, or the most sincere items on our personal wish lists; because we think them costly or impractical. I adopted a saying that I use whenever something I dream, begins to look feasible. I declare: “There will be bills whether I do something fun with the money or not. Let’s create some bills we’re happy about”! ‘None of that is new but it comes as a relief to see other people courageously asserting the same thing you believe. A new thought for me is that the universe conspires to help us, if we are true to ourselves and make a move. I smiled throughout this whole book. That says five stars to me.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Asia on Aug. 29 2006
Format: Paperback
After you're through reading the recommended list of books that the New York Times and everyone else says you're supposed to read (Brown's "Da Vinci," McCrae's "Katzenjammer" and Martel's "Life of Pi," might I suggest you tackle this book---"The Alchemist." It is simply superb. Easy to read, it is nevertheless somewhat complex in meaning. The content of this novel is remarkable in its telling. I kept me up at night, but not in that thriller kind of way. Rather by its deep meaning and insight into human nature. I highly recommend it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Fish Farmer's Wife on Dec 15 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a great book to help the world-weary soul. I helps open your heart again and see beyond the everyday problems that crust your heart with worry and toxic sludge. A very easy read.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Steven R. McEvoy HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on May 10 2006
Format: Paperback
This is an amazing book. It is a story of a young man who has a dream of hidden treasure. It is a book that alludes to that fact that all of us have a purpose and a dream. Yet many settle and give up their dream, and lose their passion for life. In this book it is stated again and again that each of us has our own Personal Legend, a quest; "When you pursue your personal legend the universe will conspire with you to make it happen." You will follow Santiago on his adventure and during the process be challenged to think about your goals and dreams and what you would have to do to pursue them.
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68 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Saavedra on June 7 2003
Format: Paperback
If you are considering reading this book based on the comments of this page, you will find the following:
1) At this moment, 471 people have taken the time to write a review about it.
2) Out of those 471 readers, 308 gave it 5 stars, and 71 gave it 4 stars.
3) Many of those readers (including myself) identify this book as one of those which can actually change your life, or open your mind to a new way of thinking. Not every book in this world receives that type of comment.
However, there are 41 comments that give this book just one star. The sad part of this is that those bad comments are always marked as the "most useful". I feel sorrow for those who did not read this book based on the anger and bad judgement of the negative reviewers. They really missed something valuable.
Most of the negative reviews come from three kinds of people:
1) Arrogant snobs, who always care more about the form than about the content; people who adore what they don't understand and call "children reading" anything that their minds can really process. They like to consider themselves separated from what they call "the masses", or "the shallow people", but in reality their are the shallowest of all. They are looking for fancy words and constructions, not for interesting questions. When you tell to one of this persons "Run! Save your life!" they don't pay attention to you. They analyze if "Save your life" could be expressed in a more elegant manner. While they think of that, the avalanche comes over their heads.
2) Phsicologysts or other counselors, who want to save you from going crazy after you read the book. They think that you will throw away your whole life under the influence of this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Adam Clark on Dec 15 2006
Format: Paperback
If you are looking to follow your heart in a chosen path or seeking the truth then this book is for you. The book contains great insights and spiritual awareness but is written in a very easy to read style.

I would strongly recommend that before you read this book to follow the principles listed in the Fit for Life books by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond. This cleansing of the body will take several months but it is worth it, as then you can experience the insights and spiritual guidance for yourself.

Another book I would recommend following the detoxification process is The Kingdom of God is Within You by Leo Tolstoy.

Good luck and God bless.
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