A review of five most inspirational books of Paulo Coelho.
Paulo Coelho stands in the world as one of the most prolific public figure, both as writer and as person. His rebellious nature, crazy thinking, and his curiosity to find his life purpose are some of things that guided him to become what he is today. The childhood dream of Paulo was to be a writer but his parents always opposed the idea, as her mother said to him, “My dear, your father is an engineer. He’s a logical, reasonable man with a very clear vision of the world. Do you actually know what it means to be a writer?” But he had the realization that a writer’s generation isn’t supposed to understand him. Paulo Coelho started his book-writing career in 1982 with his first book, Hell Archives. Up till now, he has written 30 books in total. It’s time to share his five most inspiring works.
1) The Alchemist:
The Alchemist became Brazilian best seller as soon as it was published and later turned into a worldwide phenomenon when Harper Collins decided to publish it, book has sold 83 million copies and has been translated into 67 different languages winning Guinness World Record for a most translated book by a living-author.
The book is about a shepherd, Santiago who after experiencing a prophetic kind of dream embarks on a journey to realize his Personal Legend (his dream), while on journey he finds his true love, and undergoes a personal-transformation which would eventually guide him to his destiny.
While plot of story is very simple, and confined but Paulo has deliberately and intricately fabricated a vast universe of wisdom into the book. Book provides the reader with vast collection of wisdom regarding the topics including human fears, following one’s dreams, failures, following heart and intuition, and how universe helps someone who goes to realize his or her dreams as quoted from the book as follows:
“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”
2) The Pilgrimage:
The Pilgrimage is an autobiographical account of Paulo Coelho’s spiritual awakening journey, as he called it, a travel across northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela. The book has sold right to be translated into 38 languages.
The story is about Paulo Coelho’s pilgrimage to the town of Compostela, the tomb of San Tiago (San Tiago was an evangelist, who spread the word of Christ following the crucifixion. Visiting San Tiago’s tomb is one of three holy pilgrimages people can make. The other two are to Rome and Jerusalem). Paulo Coelho undertakes this journey because although he has completed his training to become a Master in an ancient religious tradition, but his is not awarded the sword which is embalmment of achievement, instead Paulo is supposed to untaken a journey to find the answer that what he is supposed to do with sword. Paulo’s journey is guided by his mentor, Petrus and involves writer’s personal and spiritual transformation.
The book is fabricated with wisdom and spirituality.
“It has been said that there is no such thing as coincidence in this world.” -Paulo Coelho, The Pilgrimage
3) The Winner stands alone:
The Winner Stands Alone, as the title suggests that book is one of very inspirational of its kind. Book covers the themes of love and obsession. It offers a suspenseful story involving the world of futures and celebrity, where obsession of luxury and success often shadows people’s actual desire of heart.
Plot involves Cannes Film Festival where superclass, class of people who are constituents of dream making world of fashion and cinema are gathered. At this modern fair, reader is encountered with a Russian millionaire, a fashion designer, an American actress who is eager to get a leading role, an ambitious criminal detective who is at verge of solving the case of his life, and a model who is at the brink of beginning of very successful carrier. The mystery of plot is about which of these character would be able to identify his or her own dream above fabricated ones, and will realize it?
Like Alchemist, core of book has been fabricated with immense wisdom.
“Life has many ways of testing a person’s will, either by having nothing happen at all or by having everything happen all at once.” -Paulo Coelho, The Winner Stands Alone
Often, people pursuing their dreams face a turn where everything seems to befallen, and reality feels like an illusion. One starts to doubt in one’s own journey, and his dreams, this is where the penetrating faith testing occurs and this is turn which most often turns out to be the point where all horizons change. Published in 2011, it is an autobiographical account in novel-form of writer’s journey of resurrection of faith in his dream. It was bestseller in Brazil, when released, and has sold rights to be translated into 40 languages.
Story involves writer who is facing faith crisis, doubting in his very own dream, that of being writer. But as told by his master that master faced similar situations years ago, convinces the writer that he cannot give up and has to go on a journey to restore his faith. Writer embarks upon a travel journey which would help him in experimenting, finding experience, and connecting with people and world around him (Paulo Coelho is kind of writer whose work is based upon his experience unlike other type of writers who have strong imaginative minds).
Book beautifully crafts out the process of restoration of faith, and following of one’s dream.
“Don’t be intimidated by other people’s opinions. Only mediocrity is sure of itself, so take risks and do what you really want to do.” -Paulo Coelho, Aleph
5) The Witch of Portobello:
How one can find true courage to be true to himself when the person is even unsure of his being himself, is the central question of the profound work of Paulo, The Witch of Portobello.
Plot involves a mysterious woman, Athena whose story is told by the people including who knew her well as well as those who hardly did. Like The Alchemist fabric of this book is woven with deep wisdom about love, passion, joy, sacrifice which proliferate reader’s mind.
“And when you doubt it-which happens, I think, quite often at this stage of evolution-do as I suggested. Instead of trying to prove that you’re better than you think, just laugh. Laugh at your worries and insecurities. View your anxieties with humor. It will be difficult at first, but you’ll gradually get used to it. Now go back and meet all those people who think you know everything. Convince yourself that they’re right, because we all know everything, it’s merely a question of believing.”-Paulo Coelho, The Witch Of Portobello