"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 fear 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. With over a million and a half copies sold around the world, The Alchemist has already established itself as a modern classic, universally admired. Paulo Coelho's charming fable, now available in English for the first time, will enchant and inspire an even wider audience of readers for generations to come.
The Alchemist is the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found. 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.
The Brazilian author Paulo Coelho was born in 1947 in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Before dedicating his life completely to literature, he worked as theater director, actor, lyricist, and journalist.
Coelho wrote song lyrics for many famous performers in Brazilian music, such as Elis Regina and Rita Lee, yet he is best known for his work with Raul Seixas. Together they wrote such successes as “Eu nasci há dez mil anos atrás” (“I Was Born Ten Thousand Years Ago”), “Gita,” and “Al Capone.”
His fascination with the spiritual quest dates back to his hippie days, when he travelled the world learning about secret societies, oriental religions, etc. In 1982, Coelho published his first book, Hell Archives, which failed to make any kind of impact. In 1985, he contributed to the Practical Manual of Vampirism, although he later tried to take it off the shelves, since he considered it “of bad quality.” In 1986, Paulo Coelho did the pilgrimage to Saint James of Compostella, an experience later to be documented in his book The Pilgrimage.
In the following year, Coelho published The Alchemist. Slow initial sales convinced his first publisher to drop the novel, but it went on to become one of the bestselling Brazilian books of all time.
Other titles include: Brida (1990), The Valkyries (1992), By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept (1994), the collection of his best columns published in the Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo entitled Maktub (1994), the compilation of texts Phrases (1995), The Fifth Mountain (1996), Manual of a Warrior of Light (1997), Veronika Decides to Die (1998), The Devil and Miss Prym (2000), a compilation of traditional tales in Stories for Parents, Children and Grandchildren (2001), Eleven Minutes (2003), The Zahir (2005), The Witch of Portobello (2006), and a compilation of texts gathered under the title Like a Flowing River (2006).
He also adapted The Gift (Henry Drummond) and Love letters of a prophet (Kalil Gibran).
The Alchemist has sold 40 Million copies worldwide in 71 langauges and Paulo has sold more than 115 million copies in more than 160 countries.read more
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This inspirational fable by Brazilian author and translator Coelho has been a runaway bestseller throughout Latin America and seems poised to achieve the same prominence here. The charming tale of Santiago, a shepherd boy, who dreams of seeing the world, is compelling in its own right, but gains resonance through the many lessons Santiago learns during his adventures. He journeys from Spain to Morocco in search of worldly success, and eventually to Egypt, where a fateful encounter with an alchemist brings him at last to self-understanding and spiritual enlightenment. The story has the comic charm, dramatic tension and psychological intensity of a fairy tale, but it's full of specific wisdom as well, about becoming self-empowered, overcoming depression, and believing in dreams. The cumulative effect is like hearing a wonderful bedtime story from an inspirational psychiatrist. Comparisons to The Little Prince are appropriate; this is a sweetly exotic tale for young and old alike. 50,000 first printing; $50,000 ad/promo. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved