Book Review: The Alchemist



The Alchemist follows the journey of an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago. Believing a recurring dream to be prophetic, Santiago decides to travel to a Romani fortune-teller in a nearby town to discover its meaning. A gypsy woman tells him that there is a treasure in the Pyramids in Egypt.

Early into his journey, he meets an old king, Melchizedek, who tells him to sell his sheep to travel to Egypt and introduces the idea of a Personal Legend (which is always capitalized in the book). Your Personal Legend “is what you have always wanted to accomplish. Everyone, when they are young, knows what their Personal Legend is”. He adds that “when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it”. This is the core theme of the book.

General information:

Author: Paulo Coelho
Genre: Drama, Adventure, Self-improvement
No. of pages: 163


The Alchemist is one of the best stories I’ve ever read in my life. First of all the writing style was just magnificent, because it felt like someone was telling you the story. There were few sentences in that book… that were life changing to me. For example:

“The simple things are also the most extraordinary things, and only the wise can see them.”

“Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.”

“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”

It was amazing how the boy learned from everything around him. It was inspiring how knowledge could be one’s greatest weapon. and it was sad how one could lose sight of their dream without even realizing it. This book should be if every household’s bookshelf and everyone should read it.

Rating: 5/5

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