©1988 Paulo Coelho; (P)2005 HarperCollins Publishers
"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." (Publishers Weekly)
"Yareli Arizmendi spins this marvelous tale of exotic adventure....[He] makes us feel the pain and joy of Santiago, the poor shepherd boy, as he tries to decide whether to seek a larger fortune or stay in the security of his job. Exuding softness and pathos, the narrator reminds that us most people who are unhappy failed to follow their dreams when young." [AudioFile]
When I first started reading this book I thought I was reading a part of the Count of Monte Cristo. Then as it progressed I felt I was reading the ‘Dream Giver’ and realized this book is what Brian Wilkins was trying to achieve when he wrote his book. The Alchemist was written 20 years earlier and it a great story. The ‘Dream Giver’ always left me wanting more. Here the author give us more and then some. This book ties in very well with ‘Infinite Possibilities by Mike Dooley’ extremely well as well as ‘Excuse Me Your Life Is Waiting by Lynn Grabhron’. Here we meet a young man who thinks he has it all and is content with life, but his dreams tell him there is more out there. He pursues it and the story begins. After reading it I’ve removed the ‘Dream Giver’ from my recommended list and have replaced it with this book instead.
This was a book club book, so I don't really know what I was expecting, but this felt very boring to me.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure." -Nelson Mandela
I would definitely listen to the title for a second time. It is a compelling novel about following your dreams no matter the hardships that come along with trying to achieve them. In the novel, Santiago dreamt of a life of travel and treasure, and made strides toward achieving both although he experienced some stumbling blocks along the way, including loosing all of his possessions to a street their and traveling the deserts during a time of war.
The most memorable moment for me was when Santiago met Fatimah. This part of the novel intrigued me because it spoke of two beings in love with never having known each other before hand. Santiago speaks of knowing he would love her before he ever even knew her and believes that they both loved one another at first sight, because they understood the language of the universal language of the world.
I have never listened to any of his other performances, but I do remeber his role as Scar in "The Lion King".
One moment in the book that really moved me was when Santiago met the old King. During their interaction, the old King said something that will stick with me for eternity. It read, "when you want something, the universe conspires in helping you achieve it".
A musician and songwriter from the Boston area. I like "Regular Guy" books. No chick Lit, no zombies, or vampires please. No politics.
This is a book that tries hard to be full of inspirationally motivated lessons in life. The narration was good, but the story itself was geared more to an adolescent mindset. I had hoped for some sort of spiritual uplifting, but it just didn't accomplish that for me.
Nothing profound here.
I'd say it's overrated, and a bit long.
It's pleasant enough to read and these simplistic fables and philosophies are nice to think about, but as a story it's not too exciting.
If you are interested in classical literature that will keep its value, this book isn't it. If you want deeply drawn characters, this will disappoint. If you want an entertaining listen for a long drive, this may well be your choice! It is filled with thoughtful moments and insights into the human condition. It is filled with "religious" references, but that will not kill the story, but add to it. It is just a good listen.
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Well I thought I would really like this book but didn't like it much at all. The story on the surface is very plain. The plot takes the main character in a big circle and back to square one with no "happy" ending (really it feels like no ending at all). It does have a deeper meanings that you can read into some but still not an exciting read. If I hadn't been one of those people who has to finish a book once it is started I would have put it down early rather than finishing.
This book was very little story surrounded by lots of rather ill-conceived philosophy. The little story there was is very simple with every small conflict easily resolved within a few 'pages'.
I also did not agree with several aspects of the 'follow your dreams at all costs' theme that the writer espoused. I don't want to put in any 'spoilers' but the writer put way too much emphasis on the 'personal legend'. I was sick of that phrase by the end...
Be warned it is VERY judeo-christian based, so if that kind of thing offends you, then stay away. I am a Christian, but still found the way the author used religion to be heavy-handed.
Perhaps if you are looking for inspiration you might enjoy it, but I left it feeling uninspired and wishing I had spent my credits elsewhere.
PS: Jeremy Irons did a good job with the reading, no complaints there.
I joined a book club and this was the first book they chose to do. I wouldn't have read this book otherwise. But I really enjoyed Jeremy Irons reading this. You will like this book if you like new age religious themes.
Socially Urban is absolutely the best blog EVER!
This was pretty good overall. A very inspirational message that everyone can understand and relate to.
I found the insights offered by Mr. Coelho to mostly skim the surface and romanticized. This may be the secret to the book's wide popularity. I would suggest works by Eckhart Tolle (Power of Now, etc) or Baha'i writings, or even Rumi, although Rumi requires more persistence.
loved this story and will definitely listen to this again, very comforting and hopeful x
Inspiring and motivating story, really enjoyed it. The worst disease in this world is fear of the Unkown cure for it is hope. This book gave me HOPE!!
"The hairs on my neck stood up!"
What a fantastic book. I'm only sorry i didn't read it years ago.... this is now my number one favourite. Jeremy Irons voice is mesmerising.
Zero characterisation, pedestrian writing, and the "lessons" it pretends to teach are trite. The reading wasn't bad though.
Loved every moment of this journey and have stolen a few quotes and life lessons.
"The power of belief"
Exceptional story which relates strongly to the power of self belief and realisation. Throughly enjoyed this audio book!
"Exceptional, beautiful and really helpful"
I thoroughly enjoyed this book as I'm totally down on my luck at the minute and in search of my own personal legend. I happened by chance to fall upon The Alchemist and after realising it was narrated by the legendary Jeremy Irons knew it was a must buy! A life changing book for sure!
"Now one of my favourite ever books!"
Insightful and philosophical. This book has helped me look at my woes as a necessary evil on the road to my personal legend lol. Loved it
"Best book ever"
Absolutely brilliant!!! highly recommend it ... I couldn't put it down , had to read/hear it in one go .....great story about life.
brilliant and inspiring as only Paulo Coelho can be
outstanding performance by Sir Jeremy Irons
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