©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]
The audio books I get tend to be either 1) scifi or 2) things for my husband and me to listen to on long road trips--humor or history
There’s so much hype around this book, I finally took a crack at it. I can see why people really like it, but it was really not my cup of tea. I have been accused of being very literal and logical, and this book was very allegorical and fantastical so maybe that explains my less-than-enthusiastic reaction.
I prefer more “meat” on the bones of what I am reading, so even though this audio book was only 4 hours long, I was still somewhat bored and finished feeling like I wanted more practical takeaways. This novel might give the reader a warm feeling about living one’s dreams but it was woefully short on practical advice.
[I read this as an audio book performed by Jeremy Irons with just the right amount of wonder and awe.]
I could see the story in my mind's eye and like a painting, it was colorful and, at the same time, somewhat flat.
Dramatic moment when the alchemist and boy are captured and the boy is expected to call the wind.
This setting for this story is exotic- mostly in North Africa. The people are also of a different place and time, and mythical. While I found the story interesting, I wish the characters and their relationships had been developed more. It was a bit "life lesson' and "metaphor" heavy for my taste.
"Mr Irons makes this reading beautiful"
Whilst a lot of people may debate aspects of the book and its content in their review, I would like to comment on the extraordinary power and beauty of the reading by Jeremy Irons. His voice made this story a real joy to hear, I am going to search and see if he narrates any more on here. Having read the book before I can honestly say that Jeremy Irons' reading surpassed my reading by far. His dynamic tone and characterisation truly transport you on the magical journey of wonder that this book is all about. Thank you Audible, thank you Mr Irons, a beautiful 4 hours indeed.
"Pregnant with wisdom"
The Alchemist stirred questions within me. It revealed wisdom that had been staring me in the face, which I had failed to recognise.
The story of the Centurion struck a deeply personal nerve, at a most vulnerable time, bringing tears to my eyes .
Jeremy Irons made the words leap of the page, as though they have a life of their own. I would recommend this book to anyone who is afraid of failure.
Just amazing, my life has begun a new chapter, I've quit my job and I'm moving abroad in 3 weeks.
"This story moved me."
This is a wonderful and thought-provoking tale. I wanted to listen again as soon as it was finished! It really invites you to read between the lines and reflect upon your own life story. Highly recommended.
"Such an inspiring story"
This was recommended by Will Smilth during an interview on his ideas of success.
It's a simple and interesting tale with lots of twists and thought provoking ideas.
Highly recommended to anyone, especially those interested in "the way" or personal development.
"Soft, easy and inspiring"
This book is all it's hyped to be. A warming and inspiring story with great characters and intrigue. A nice twist too ;)
Jeremy Irons really enhanced the story for me too. His accents were apt and sometimes amusing; his voice acting top notch.
The ending, the characters.
Irons made the experience absolutely better.
"Fantastic read ( and listen)"
What a fantastic book. A really complete story. Fantastic detail and insight into a world of mystery. Highly recommended .
"Excellent - definitely recommend"
totally engrossing, brilliantly narrated and I would recommend this to anyone with a bit of time on there hands. it's a short story with a big impact.
"I don't understand the fuss over this"
Jeremy Irons was great. However I am either not intelligent enough to 'get' this story or it's just a case of the emperor's new clothes. I found it hard to want to listen to it so took a while to finish it. I haven't really taken much from it. It did have a certain dreamlike style.
"Not a book for feminists!"
This is a really unusual and imaginative book which is very well read by Jeremy Irons. I enjoyed a lot of the story and the overall idea, but I found the story horribly sexist.
The whole story is based around a boy who goes in search of his personal legend (basically his life purpose) this involves many adventures, exciting discoveries, meeting new people (almost exclusively men) who help him discover new aspects of himself and life.
Meanwhile he meets a grand total of two women. We aren't told anything about the life purpose of the first woman but the second does have a life purpose. It is to sit at home and wait until a man comes along to complete her and then to wait (at home) while he goes and pursues his dreams!!!!!!! The very fact that she has met him means her life is complete, even if he doesn't bother to come back.
On top of that the whole story is filled with lines like "when a man goes in search of his dreams . . ." "a man must follow his destiny . . ." I'm really not sure if the author actually meant this only applies to men or if he was using "men" when he should have said people. Either way I was getting angrier and angrier listening.
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