The Alchemist

The Alchemist

Large Print - 2002?
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Baker & Taylor
A fable about undauntingly following one's dreams, listening to one's heart, and reading life's omens features the dialogue between a young Spanish shepherd seeking a treasure in the Egyptian pyramids and an unnamed being. (General Fiction)


The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho continues to change the lives of its readers forever. With more than two million copies sold around the world, The Alchemist has established itself as a modern classic, universally admired.

Paulo Coelho’s masterpiece tells the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found.

The story of the treasures Santiago finds along the way teaches us, as only a few stories can, 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.

Publisher: New York, NY : HarperLargePrint, [2002?]
Edition: 1st Harper large print ed
ISBN: 9780060834838
Characteristics: xx, 197 p. (large print) ; 23 cm


From Library Staff

An Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids. Along the way he meets a Gypsy woman, a man who calls himself king, and an alchemist, all of whom point Santiago in the direction of his quest. No on... Read More »

From the critics

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AL_JULIA Jan 04, 2018

I loved this book. I read it in a very pivotal time in my life, and it has continued to resonate with me. It is one of the few books that I re-read. It's one of those books that becomes more impactful after you've had time to reflect on it.

Oct 28, 2017

I had heard great things about this book and actually looked for it at the used book store while in Chicago but they didn't have it. When I was grabbing some books from the library I made sure to check this one out. It's a story about a shepherd boy traveling through the desert in search of his Personal Legend and a treasure. The fable reminds us never to give up hope and to chase down our dreams with everything we've got. Oh yeah, and the fact that the greatest treasure is always found within ;) It's short and simple, but definitely worth the read. I would give it an 8 out of 10.

aduckie88 Oct 11, 2017

The Alchemist reminds you have the power to create your reality.

Sep 18, 2017

I wasn't expecting a very religious book since alchemy incites magical and scientific overtones. However, this book was very heavy handed in the way it emphasized "God's destiny" and people's "Personal Legend." It implied that you have a personal destiny laid out by a religious power and you encounter people who either help you to achieve that destiny, or provide roadblocks for you to overcome. It had a very preachy feel that was off-putting. The writing was okay, but nothing extraordinary or even great, really.

Jul 17, 2017

Reminds me of Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. It has a fluffy, feel-good prose, as if in a dream, but lacking a certain substance for my tastes. Nevertheless, I completely get how The Alchemist grew to become one of the most popular books of its time. It pushes all the right buttons—an exotic landscape, believe in yourself, follow your dreams, etc.

Jun 30, 2017

The book has true wisdom. Everyone should read this.

Mar 28, 2017

This book pulls you in and doesn't let go! Coelho weaves a story that involves you in the characters lives. Outstanding!

ktnv Mar 23, 2017

One of my all time favourite books.

Mar 20, 2017

I highly recommend this book to all age groups. Not only is it a fantastic novel, but it is also a great motivational book about pursuing your personal legend or dreams.

AL_ELIA Feb 22, 2017

One of my favorite books of all time. One of the only books I will re-read when I need a pick-me-up. This was 'The Secret' before anything inspirational/spiritual was popular. Wrapped in with a light-hearted story of discovery and adventure. I recommend this book to anyone starting the journey of self.

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Jul 10, 2016

ilovepiggy thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Nov 29, 2014

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Apr 15, 2014

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Aug 12, 2012

DuckieDucks thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Bluebird1298 Jun 10, 2012

Bluebird1298 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Jan 30, 2012

dancergirl111 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Nonimouse Oct 03, 2010

Nonimouse thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

so_it_goes Jul 22, 2010

so_it_goes thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Jul 20, 2008

kokosowe thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


Add a Quote

ellensix Oct 09, 2015

"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."
—Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

Jun 17, 2015

"Everyone has his or her own way of learning things," he said to himself. "His way isn't the same as mine, nor mine as his. But we are both in search of our Personal Legends, and I respect him for that."

Jun 08, 2013

"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."

Jun 08, 2013

"When each day is the same as the next, it’s because people fail to recognize the good things that happen in their lives every day that the sun rises."

Jul 10, 2012

What is the world's greatest lie?

"At some point in our lives we loose control of what's happening to us, and our lives become controlled by fate."

so_it_goes Jul 22, 2010

“Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity.”


Add a Summary

Nonimouse Oct 03, 2010

Dreams, symbols, signs, and adventure follow the reader like echoes of ancient wise voices in "The Alchemist", a novel that combines an atmosphere of Medieval mysticism with the song of the desert. With this symbolic masterpiece Coelho states that we should not avoid our destinies, and urges people to follow their dreams, because to find our "Personal Myth" and our mission on Earth is the way to find "God", meaning happiness, fulfillment, and the ultimate purpose of creation.

The novel tells the tale of Santiago, a boy who has a dream and the courage to follow it. After listening to "the signs" the boy ventures in his personal, Ulysses-like journey of exploration and self-discovery, symbolically searching for a hidden treasure located near the pyramids in Egypt.
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EPLPicks_Teen Apr 06, 2010

A young Spanish shepherd boy seeks a hidden treasure, dreaming of travelling the world in search of the most extravagant riches.


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