©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]
I've been listening to Audible books for years, but this is the first one that, after finishing it, I immediately bought a hard copy. In fact, I bought TWO!! One for me to (re)read and mark up with highlights and notes, and one to pass around to my family and friends! This story is an amazing parable, richly layered with insights for finding and living a richer, more grounded, more meaningful life. Never "preachy", this is an allegorical story written in lyrical language that stands beautifully on its own. Add the richness that Jeremy Irons's delivery brings to this Audible edition, and it becomes a transcendent experience.
I am an avid "reader"- I prefer to listen to books rather than read them due to the added dimension added by the narrator.
This book is one that I will read (listen to) over and over. The lessons one learns from this book are very similar to those one understands when studying Law of Attraction. The principles are sound and the story is a wonderful one. Jeremy Irons does a fabulous narration. Some chide me for not "reading" books... but when one can have the treat of hearing a talented actor such as Jeremy Irons do a rendition of such a special book, it's a win win as far as I'm concerned. I am now anxious to read other books by Paulo Coelho!
No better choice to read this magnificent book by Paul Coelho than Jeremy Irons. It is exceptionally well read, with great expression, and wonderful adaption of voice to characters. I have had it on audio cassette since it was first released in that format and was delighted to find it available in audio-book format at CD quality. It's truly a must have and is suitable for all ages. The book is also most profound yet told simply with grace and depth.
Traveler. Artist. Dreamer.
Santiago is a young man who proceeds in literally making his dreams come true. He is an ordinary man, full of doubts and fears, like you and me, but he has this drive inside of him and a courage to continue on his path. This is a fantastic fable filled with unsurmountable challenges and life changing choices. I do agree with a previous reviewer in that Paulo over uses "omen", but it's kind of funny when you expect it. Jeremy Irons does an amazing job with changing voices to match each character (his voice does get low at points though). This is, hands down, my favorite book.
Living my life one chapter at a time!
Through four audiobooks, this one was amongst the top of all of them.
What I liked best was the main character's interactions with the different characters he met along his journey.
My favorite scene was when the boy tried to tell Fatima the reason why he loved her and she stopped him and told him he didn't need to.
Realizing Your Legacy.
The narration was perfect.
I really enjoyed this book. While it is not necessarily the enthralling Hero's journey that I thought it would be, this book should be on every high school and college student's reading list. It helps to put your "personal legend" or life's mission into perspective. While it isn't nearly a basis for theology, it touches on the many issues that people face as they embark on their life's journey. I especially liked the Alchemist's advice about not giving up on your life's mission for love. While admirable and definitely worth while, if one ends their life journey to pursue love, they will regret it and eventually resent the one they love. On the other hand if that significant other truly loves you, they will encourage you to pursue your personal legend and even wait for you if need be. To stand in the way of another person fulfilling their purpose does an injustice to that person, but is also self detrimental. Each person is on this earth for a purpose. It is up to each of us to be open enough to God's plan to find and pursue that purpose. Then we can truly live rich and fulfilling lives.
List of favorite books: Woodcutter - Reginald Hill, Consent to Kill, First Deadly Sin - Lawrence Sanders, Sniper Elite - Scott McEwen
I was given this book as a gift. Because it falls under the category of a "Fable" with a hint of fantasy, I probably would not have got it for myself. I really liked this book through and through. It really made me stop and think about how I have let a busy life and possibly some fears stop me from pursuing things I want to accomplish - Not need to accomplish.
Jeremy Irons was obviously Jeremy irons and told the story very well. It was a great story and I am glad I listened to it.
In a peaceful, verdant valley on the Equator, the sun always sets at 6, and a good audiobook is always the perfect evening companion
Paulo Coelho's tightly crafted little fable has become something of a contemporary classic in the nearly twenty years since it first appeared. It's a thought-provoking, somewhat mystical perspective on values--what really matters in life, and what really doesn't. The obvious things, it turns out, really don't, and anyone who pays close attention is likely to be better for the experience. The reading in the velvety voice of Jeremy Irons is perfect.
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.
I'm going through a rough patch in my life. I've lost someone special. My brother Bryan Keith Wilkey. This book although a fable helps you see things from a different perspective. It is indeed worth reading more than once. It somehow gave me hope. Odd.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"Fantastic read ( and listen)"
What a fantastic book. A really complete story. Fantastic detail and insight into a world of mystery. Highly recommended .
"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.
Zero characterisation, pedestrian writing, and the "lessons" it pretends to teach are trite. The reading wasn't bad though.
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