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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on February 14, 2015
I don't read "story" books very often, but I enjoyed this one from Paulo. The book has a simple style, but you still need to put some thought on some of the idea's evoked in it. I believe it to be a great book for teenagers. The alchemist also introduces any beginner to the world of spirituality. From an objective stand-point I would consider that the idea's proposed to this book should be considered, but not consumed, take the bits you like and make your life better than it was. Don't read it with expectations, I think that the flaw of this book is it's status.

The book is nicely printed and I enjoyed my experience.
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on May 14, 2015
This book will either change your life for ever or will solidify what you already knew and more. I have given out two books already and more to be given. This book should be in all school. A teaching tool of sorts. An amazing bright light for all to see and read about.
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on September 3, 2015
If you haven;t read this book yet - you are missing out on one of the best ever - not exagerating!
Although I'm not much of a fan of touchy-feely-bordering on spiritual/religious stuff (as I find others by Coelho), The Alchemist is so beautiful and interesting - almost arresting. The writing is so lovely - in the true sense of the word. Buy it - it's truly worth it!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon March 23, 2014
This was a wonderful little story about following your dreams. It was heartwarming to read. It is about a young shepherd who is told if he leaves everything and travels to the pyramids, he will find his treasure. He decides to go and follow this dream, and he learns along the way that there is more than one type of treasure.
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on October 5, 2015
Good message and kind of entertaining. Tough to review because the writing seemed a bit ...simple like written for young adults. Very bible-parable quality of writing. I heard so much hype about this book I was a bit disappointed but on its own merits its "interesting". Death by faint praise. 2.8 Stars
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on August 29, 2006
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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on June 12, 2016
I read this book because it receives a lot of hype. I was disappointed. It seems this book was written for a non-skeptical audience. If you are at all a rationalist and/or skeptic, I'd suggest you stay away, unless you want to enjoy a half-decent, easy to read, work of fiction.

I have all the respect for this books and for those who have received some sort of benefit from it. For me personally, however, it left way too many unanswered questions. This concept of "heart" is ubiquitous in fiction, so you really aren't adding anything to the collective human consciousness by advocating for the reader to follow their heart.

A lot of the hype around this book makes it seem like a transformational self-help book. I'm not sure if that was the authors intention. If it was, then I think this book deserves 2/5 stars, because I don't think it convinces anyone with a critical mind that the "heart" is worth following unconditionally-- let alone, even establish what this concept of "heart" is so that one could know how to follow it well. My "heart" (or what I think of as my "heart") has had many different ill-conceived and some well-conceived dreams and fantasies-- which ones was I suppose to follow? I still have dreams today-- in fact, multiple ones. Is it really advisable to follow any dream my "heart" desires without developing a skeptical attitude about the outcomes? How am I suppose to distinguish which ones are sensible and really in the best interests of myself and others? If you haven't noticed... I sincerely wanted to convinced by The Alchemist and integrate it's lesson of following your "heart" into my life's philosophy. It would make life much easier. However, Mr. Coelho simply failed to anticipate and answer even half my critical questions.

Now, if Mr. Coelho's intention was to write a good story, well then I'd rate the book 3.5/5 stars. It was easy to read and served as a good diversion-- not really mind-blowing or exciting though. Hopefully, this review will help some people who come to books like this with a mindset similar to my own.
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on March 17, 2016
Everyone in the whole world should read this book. Sometimes I get to the last page and flip right back to the first to start again. Inspiring, entertaining, exciting, and so incredibly well written. I can't say enough how much I love this book!
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on December 15, 2008
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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on July 4, 2016
As many others have written, I felt like I was reading a New-Age pamphlet that was chock-full of cliches and empty fluff. The novel seems a bit self-important, when it capitalizes all of its concepts ("Personal Legend"; "Soul Of The World"; "Universal Language"), to be sure you don't miss the obvious points (how in the world could you?).

Also as others have pointed out, this book is full of contradictions. Listen to your heart, no matter what - except of course when you shouldn't. Follow your dream, but don't follow your whims (how are you to know the difference?). And it goes on like that.

I wanted to like this book, after all the hype I'd heard, but it just seemed like much ado about nothing. I suppose the story is generally interesting, albeit simplistic, but it certainly isn't any better than a million other novels out there.
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