Review: The Alchemist

The Alchemist2 starsRead from August 03 to 04, 2014

Synopsis: Paulo Coelho’s enchanting novel has inspired a devoted following around the world. This story, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids. Along the way he meets a Gypsy woman, a man who calls himself king, and an alchemist, all of whom point Santiago in the direction of his quest. No one knows what the treasure is, or if Santiago will be able to surmount the obstacles along the way. But what starts out as a journey to find worldly goods turns into a discovery of the treasure found within. Lush, evocative, and deeply humane, the story of Santiago is an eternal testament to the transforming power of our dreams and the importance of listening to our hearts.

Bookish Things: 197 pages. The cover is lovely, but it really doesn’t do too much for me in terms of enticing me to read the book.

Where to buy: Amazon on kindle for $10.20 or in paperback for $8.92 – but perhaps just pick up a copy from the library.

My Review:

The alchemist seems to be a favourite of a lot of people. It seems to draw fans who like a huge array of genres too.For me, it fell very flat. It read as a fable, but also as if it was trying to preach. I hated that.

While the sense of adventure was there, the story seemed to move at a glacial pace. Focusing on the most inane detail.

I didn’t feel any sort of connection with Santiago, or The Alchemist, the Englishman or Fatima. It was like being kept outside and watching a story unfold through glass. Unable to participate.

Some reviews discuss the philosophical awareness that this book supposedly has, the push to make its readers focus on their own journey. But I feel it was nothing but a quest story being tarnished with a religious brush and dressed up as something it’s not.

I doubt I’ll read more of Paulo’s work. It just didn’t fit right with me.


One thought on “Review: The Alchemist

  1. I can see where you’re coming from with this. I was expecting amazing things with this book. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t hate it, but it left me unsure if I would read any more of his work either!

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