“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” - The Alchemist, Paulo Coehlo
In my pursuit to read more books off my bookshelf in 2021, my first reading choice was The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo. It has come highly recommended by many friends, and my shelf was absolutely begging me to choose it first. I firmly believe that my shelf and my books tell me when it is time to pick a certain one up. This moment was no different. It was the perfect time to reflect on my life and my dreams...let's set the scene.
SYNOPSIS: The story begins with a young shepherd named Santiago who travels from his home in Spain to discover many treasures in life - both physical and personal - across Morocco and the Egyptian desert. He meets a Gypsy woman, a King, a shop owner, an adventurer and an Alchemist who all point him on his journey in order to discover his treasure. He might run into challenges along the way, but they make him stronger in order to achieve his personal legend.
MY THOUGHTS: To me, The Alchemist is not just a novel about a shepherd who goes on a journey to find treasure; it is really a parable about a person's quest to discover who they truly are in this complex world we live in. All of us are placed on this Earth for a purpose, and we all don't know what that true purpose is. But, we can feel it just like Santiago with his stones and overall beating of his heart.
I love books like this. They make you think, dream, take your breath away and remind you what and who is important...it also makes you think about what is to come in the next or where you are going in this life. I may not have read a ton of books yet this year, but I have an inkling it will reside in my top 10 for the year by the time 2021 comes to a close and (yes I know quite some time away!!).
If you are looking for more books like The Alchemist where others find their personal legends, try The Seven Story Mountain by Thomas Merton or Wild by Cheryl Strayed .