The Alchemist (25th Anniversary Edition) by Paulo Coelho, Audiobook (Cassette) | Barnes & Noble
The Alchemist

The Alchemist

4.2 1758
by Paulo Coelho, Jeremy Irons
     
 

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"My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer." the boy told the alchemist one night as they looked up at the moonless sky.

"Tell your heart that the far of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams."

Every few decades a book is published that changes the

Overview

"My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer." the boy told the alchemist one night as they looked up at the moonless sky.

"Tell your heart that the far of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams."

Every few decades a book is published that changes the lives of its readers forever. The Alchemist is such a book.

The Alchemist is a magical story of Santiago, an Audalusian shepherd boy who travels in search of a worldly treasure. From his home in Spain he journeys to the markets of Tangiers and across the Egyptian desert to a fateful encounter with the alchemist.

The story of the treasures Santiago finds along the way teaches us, as only a few stories have done, about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and above all, following our dreams.

Editorial Reviews

With the help of several enchanted strangers, an Andalusian shepherd boy learns to listen to himself.
Palm Beach Post
The unmatched Jeremy Irons reading this book makes it an instant audio classic.
M. Scott Peck
A wise and inspiring fable about the pilgrimage that life should be.
Indianapolis Star
“A touching, inspiring fable.”
London Times
“[His] books have had a life-enchanting effect on millions of people.”
Austin American-Statesman
“As memorable and meaningful as Saint-Exupery’s The Little Prince.”
New York Times
“[This] Brazilian wizard makes books disappear from stores.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“A magical little volume.”
Rudolfo Anaya
“An adventure story full of magic and wisdom.”
Joseph Girzone
“A beautiful story with a pointed message for every reader.”
Gerald G. Jampolsky
“A most tender and gentle story. It is a rare gem of a book.”
Spencer Johnson
“An entrepreneurial tale of universal wisdom we can apply to the business of our own lives.”
Anthony Robbins
“A remarkable tale about the most magical of all journeys: the quest to fulfill one’s destiny.”
NEIL PATRICK HARRIS
“It’s a brilliant, magical, life-changing book that continues to blow my mind with its lessons. [...] A remarkable tome.”
PHARRELL WILLIAMS
“it changed my whole life. I realized of all of the people who had conspired to get me to this place.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780694524471
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
03/06/2001
Edition description:
Unabridged, 3 Cassettes
Pages:
5
Product dimensions:
4.38(w) x 7.22(h) x 1.24(d)

Read an Excerpt

Part One

The boy's name was Santiago. Dusk was falling as the boy arrived with his herd at an abandoned church. The roof had fallen in long ago, and an enormous sycamore had grown on the spot where the sacristy had once stood.

He decided to spend the night there. He saw to it that all the sheep entered through the ruined gate, and then laid some planks across it to prevent the flock from wandering away during the night. There were no wolves in the region, but once an animal had strayed during the night, and the boy had had to spend the entire next day searching for it.

He swept the floor with his jacket and lay down, using the book he had just finished reading as a pillow. He told himself that he would have to start reading thicker books: they lasted longer, and made more comfortable pillows.

It was still dark when he awoke, and, looking up, he could see the stars through the half-destroyed roof.

I wanted to sleep a little longer, he thought. He had the same dream that night as a week ago, and once again he had awakened before it ended.

He arose and, taking up his crook, began to awaken the sheep that still slept. He had noticed that, as soon as he awoke, most of his animals also began to stir. It was as if some mysterious energy bound his life to that of the sheep, with whom he had spent the past two years, leading them through the countryside in search of food and water. "They are so used to me that they know my schedule," he muttered. Thinking about that for a moment, he realized that it could be the other way around: that it was he who had become accustomed to their schedule.

But there were certain of them who took a bit longer to awaken. The boy prodded them, one by one, with his crook, calling each by name. He had always believed that the sheep were able to understand what he said. So there were times when he read them parts of his books that had made an impression on him, or when he would tell them of the loneliness or the happiness of a shepherd in the fields. Sometimes he would comment to them on the things he had seen in the villages they passed.

But for the past few days he had spoken to them about only one thing: the girl, the daughter of a merchant who lived in the village they would reach in about four days. He had been to the village only once, the year before.The merchant was the proprietor of a dry goods shop, and he always demanded that the sheep be sheared in his presence, so that he would not be cheated. A friend had told the boy about the shop, and he had taken his sheep there.

"I need to sell some wool," the boy told the merchant. The shop was busy, and the man asked the shepherd to wait until the afternoon. So the boy sat on the steps of the shop and took a book from his bag.

"I didn't know shepherds knew how to read," said a girl's voice behind him.

The girl was typical of the region of Andalusia, with flowing black hair,and eyes that vaguely recalled the Moorish conquerors.

"Well, usually I learn more from my sheep than from books," he answered. During the two hours that they talked, she told him she was the merchant's daughter, and spoke of life in the village, where each day was like all the others. The shepherd told her of the Andalusian countryside,and related the news from the other towns where he had stopped. It was a pleasant change from talking to his sheep.

"How did you learn to read?" the girl asked at one point.

"Like everybody learns," he said. "In school."

"Well, if you know how to read, why are you just a shepherd?"

The boy mumbled an answer that allowed him to avoid responding to her question.He was sure the girl would never understand. He went on telling stories about his travels, and her bright, Moorish eyes went wide with fear and surprise. As the time passed, the boy found himself wishing that the day would never end, that her father would stay busy and keep him waiting for three days. He recognized that he was feeling something he had never experienced before: the desire to live in one place forever. With the girl with the raven hair, his days would never be the same again.

But finally the merchant appeared, and asked the boy to shear four sheep. He paid for the wool and asked the shepherd to come back the following year.

And now it was only four days before he would be back in that same village. He was excited, and at the same time uneasy: maybe the girl had already forgotten him. Lots of shepherds passed through, selling their wool.

"It doesn't matter," he said to his sheep. "I know other girls in other places."

But in his heart he knew that it did matter. And he knew that shepherds,like seamen and like traveling salesmen, always found a town where there was someone who could make them forget the joys of carefree wandering.

The day was dawning, and the shepherd urged his sheep in the direction of the sun. They never have to make any decisions, he thought. Maybe that's why they always stay close to me.

What People are saying about this

Spencer Johnson

“An entrepreneurial tale of universal wisdom we can apply to the business of our own lives.”

Joseph Girzone

“A beautiful story with a pointed message for every reader.”

Gerald G. Jampolsky

“A most tender and gentle story. It is a rare gem of a book.”

Anthony Robbins

“A remarkable tale about the most magical of all journeys: the quest to fulfill one’s destiny.”

Rudolfo Anaya

“An adventure story full of magic and wisdom.”

M. Scott Peck

“A wise and inspiring fable about the pilgrimage that life should be.”

Meet the Author

Paulo Coelho, born in Rio de Janeiro in 1947, is one of the bestselling and most influential authors in the world. The Alchemist, The Pilgrimage, The Valkyries, Brida, Veronika Decides to Die, Eleven Minutes, The Zahir, The Witch of Portobello, The Winner Stands Alone, Aleph, Manuscript Found in Accra, and Adultery, among others, have sold over 175 million copies worldwide, and The Alchemist has been on the New York Times bestseller list for over 360 weeks.

Paulo Coelho has been a member of the Brazilian Academy of Letters since 2002, and in 2007, he was appointed United Nations Messenger of Peace. He is also the most followed author on social media.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date of Birth:
August 24, 1947
Place of Birth:
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Education:
Left law school in second year
Website:
http://www.paulocoelho.com

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