Here are three of my favourite books besides the Alchemist from the talented author, Paulo Coelho. Must reads, and here’s why.
1. Veronika Decides to Die.
This book man… it gives you a new perspective on suicide. Not just that, the setting is based in a mental institution in Slovenia, named Villette. We follow Veronika through her decision making process, how she got admitted in Villette with only a week to live after her suicide attempt caused permanent heart complications and how she discovers the world of the mad. An extremely interesting read, Veronika Wants to Die will definitely give you a paradigm shift on how you view life, and how you will continue living it.
Best quote: “Mad people do mad things.”
2. The Spy
Well, this book has an intense start off. The execution of Mata Hari, a woman of high status. She faces death unfazed. And the book continues with her accounts on her life that she recorded down while she was in prison, awaiting her death. Mata Hari was a unique individual, beautiful and brave. Coelho’s character construction does not cease to amaze me. This book describes vividly Mata Hari’s life and innermost thoughts as she builds herself up after her divorce to become a famed dancer in Paris and how she got entangled into becoming a spy for an enemy country during the war. Stunning storytelling by Coelho. A must read.
Best Quote: “Even the tallest trees are able to grow from tiny seeds like these. Remember this, and try not to rush time.”
3. Eleven Minutes
Emotionally raw. Coelho blew me away with his careful telling of the thoughts and naïve wisdom of a young 17 year old Brazilian girl, dreaming of a good life away from home. Her dreams got the better of her when she got tricked into becoming a prostitute in Sweden. We follow her thoughts on how she dealt with hardship and manipulation, learnt to assimilate into a new culture to survive in a world drastically different from her own, kept her pride and sanity intact despite the shame of her profession. We see how she vowed never to fall in love, because “love spoiled everything”. And later in life allowed herself to love selflessly, to give without expecting in return. A beautiful self-discovery journey, extremely relatable to both men and women wherever they are in their walk of life.
Best Quote: “Life is too short, or too long, for me to allow myself the luxury of living it so badly.”
So, those are the three! Read em all and let em know what you think, or if I”m missing out another Paulo Coelho masterpiece, let me know in the comments below!