Skip to main content

The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho.

I read The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho for the first time a couple of years ago. There was a lot of hype around it and many famous people listed it as their favorite book of all time, so I thought I should read it. First of all I was surprised how small and thin the book was: based on the reviews I was waiting for some kind of epic odyssey, a door stopper/paperweight type of a heavy opus. I was a bit taken aback by the simple and non-descriptive style of Paulo Coelho’s writing, the childish fable-like narrative and the ending, which I won’t spoil for you but I thought was too happy-happy-joy-joy and not very credible. So I put down the book disappointed, because I felt it was nothing I had expected.

Then something started to happen. I found myself thinking about the themes of the book over and over again. I started to dig deeper into the philosophy and aphorisms behind the story and felt some kind of new-found hope, inner peace and courage. I started to think the book was actually really good.

I decided to revisit The Alchemist a few years after the first time I read it. I wanted to see if my opinions about the book had changed since my expectations were more realistic this time and I had gained a couple of more years’ worth of life experience. This time around I did find new nuances in the story and I did like it more. I do still find the same aspects I listed above irritating: the story has so much more potential but is now reduced to what reminds me of old nursery rhymes. I would compare this book to The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupèry: a story that touches both children as well as adults. A child sees only the fairy tale when an adult can find philosophy and life wisdom between the lines.

There is something really captivating about the story of Santiago the shepherd who leaves everything behind to follow his dreams (or Personal Legend as it’s called in the book). Every one of us surely has their own dreams they would like to follow but are too afraid to let go of the safety of the life they live now. It’s comforting and consoling to read about people who have achieved their dreams especially against all odds, because it gives us the feeling we could also do the same if we wanted to. What I like most about The Alchemist is the feeling of being the architect of your own fortune or the master of your own fate; like everything is possible if you only want it bad enough.

I do recommend this book for everyone to read, but with small caution: do not expect it to be a life changing experience. Read the book with open mind, take it as it is and don’t try to make the story bigger than it is. Take your time to think through the things it aroused in you and feel the feelings it made you feel, because at least in my opinion the things you process in your mind after reading the book are far more important than the book itself.


Popular posts from this blog

Salut Chéri! Beret Pattern.

Here is the pattern for the berets I've knitted. The name for the beret is from the t-shirt I was wearing when I took the project photos of the first beret for Ravelry. I thought the name suited the beret, since it's quite classical take on the hat that has become the icon of everything French. Happy knitting!

Cloud Mittens - the Pattern part 1.

This is so long overdue, but I have now finally managed to write down the pattern for the Cloud mittens. Here it is, my Christmas present to all you guys! Enjoy!
(Here is the link to the pattern on Ravelry)

You need: 125 m or 135 yards of DK weight yarn (blue sample knit with Novita Wool, 100% wool, 135 m/ 50g) 125 m or 135 yards of sport weight yarn for the lining (blue sample: Garnstudio Drops Baby Alpaca Silk, 70% alpaca, 30% silk, 167 m/ 50 g) 
Needles: a set of 2.5 mm (US 1 1/2) DPNs or circular needles if you prefer Magic Loop method like me
Gauge: 16 stitches and 22 rows = 5 cm (2 inches)

To fit an average woman hand
Intermediate knitting skills required

Theo's New Knitwear.

All of Theo's hats became suddenly too small for him. And also too hot now that spring has arrived. I had been eyeing the Kyushu hat pattern by Kuroki Knitting for a while and decided to knit it now that I had the chance. I love knitting baby hats because they are really fast to knit but at the same time as versatile as grown-up hats. This hat had a really unique eyelet sic sac pattern which was fun to knit. 
Theo was diagnosed with allergy to eggs, that's why his cheeks are looking so bad at the moment. But now we know and can eliminate all things containing eggs from his diet!
This was my first time knitting with Sandnes Garn Mini Alpaca, but certainly not the last one. Unlike many other alpaca yarns it was not at all itchy which is important for baby knits. The light blue color is also really cute in my opinion. 

I have also finished the bunny yoke pullover I started knitting during the Easter holidays. The pattern is Sweet William by Ann Kingstone and it is one of the cute…