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Aleph

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3.37  ·  Rating details ·  29,528 ratings  ·  2,662 reviews
The new novel by the author of The Alchemist. Aleph marks a return to Paulo Coelho's beginnings. In a frank and surprising personal story, one of the world's most beloved authors embarks on a remarkable and transformative journey of self- discovery. Facing a grave crisis of faith, and seeking a path of spiritual renewal and growth, Paulo decides to start over: to travel, t ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 2010)
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David Quintero I believe Coelho felt up until that moment that Hilal was trying too hard to appeal to him, she thought of doing something 'spiritual' to get his…moreI believe Coelho felt up until that moment that Hilal was trying too hard to appeal to him, she thought of doing something 'spiritual' to get his approval, perhaps. And also, there was what Hilal perceived to be the threat of Tatiana, who (also up until this point) Coelho perceived she regarded as a rival (for his attention).

This is why he sees the ritual as cliché. But it all turned around when he saw that the moment had a profound effect upon Tatiana, he no longer thought of the moment as cliché. The two women hugged and became friends.

I guess Coelho understood a spiritual truth for himself at that moment. That what he might have judged as cliché from a position of superiority, could be exactly the medicine to soothe the pain of Tatiana's soul. This is why he is sure to express how crudely he regarded the situation at first, and how mistaken he might have been.(less)

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K.D. Absolutely
Sep 12, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jzhunagev
Shelves: trashy, religion, memoirs
When already-famous novelists approach their twilight years, do you notice that some of them become strange? Last week, I read about Haruki Murakami (born 1949; now 62) trying to train himself as a triathlon participant at the age of 55 while writing his memoir What I Talk About When I Talk About Running (2007). Currently, I am reading a book by John Steinbeck (1902-1968) who at the age of 59 toured along several states living in a trailer together with his poodle dog Charley and wrote his adven ...more
Nilesh Kashyap
Jan 29, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: translated
With what intention did Paulo Coelho wrote this book. Any moral or source of inspiration and worst of all, any story if present in this book were probably beyond my grasp or there were none to be found.

Why do I say no story?
In very general, a story has three parts - the beginning, the middle and the end. This book seemed to me just one of those three part and which one, I don’t have the slightest idea!

The Book
This is an autobiography and in the entire story the author travels on trans-Siberi
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Aleph, Paulo Coelho
Aleph is a 2011 novel by the Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho. An autobiographical account of Coelho, it is his fourteenth major book, and touches on the theme of spirituality. Aleph was written in Coelho's native language, Portuguese. The book tells the story of his own epiphany while on a pilgrimage through Asia in 2006 on the Trans-Siberian Railway. The title of the novel is based on Jorge Luis Borges short-story The Aleph, from 1945. (Aleph is the first letter of the Hebrew a
...more
Claire Capul
Oct 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
The book made me realize that one can really love two different person at a time. You can love another one even if you're committed with someone without being called a womanizer or anything that you can relate to that.

Paulo Coelho's Aleph is about Paulo having met a woman he loved 500 years ago, in the current time wherein he is 59 years old and the girl is 21 years old. He met the girl, Hilal, again in a different time, the now, where in Paulo is already stabled with his wife.

Paulo admitted tha
...more
lita
Oct 05, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel-english
I moved this review to my blog
Michel
Sep 23, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
for the last 4 books and i'm giving Paolo Coelho chances to change my bad impression about him,,i think this was the last chance.. his books are either so good or so bad that i barely finished many of them. this book talks about his journey crossing Russia on train. the events are so slow and even nothing happens,, i was finishing chapter after chapter waiting to reach the crucial point of the story,,but nothing happened..i know nothing about other lives if they do exist or not,, but the way he ...more
Silvana
- I regret that I invested time in reading Coelhos "Aleph".
There are some books written by Coelho that I like, and with Borges in mind the title Aleph appealed to me.
With his opening prayer Coelho send nod of assent to the Argentinian genius Borges short story 'Aleph'.
In Borges' story, the Aleph is a point in space that contains all other points. Anyone who gazes into it can see everything in the universe from every angle simultaneously, without distortion, overlapping or confusion.
But Borges
...more
Nadin Adel
Oct 19, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I believe the only one who actually benefited from this book is Paulo and the publisher. It is sort of a marketing for himself and his books. I just really hate it when people do feel they are that much great to write about themselves in such way. A real disturbing, time waster exaggerated epic. Although characters are based upon real ones, they were dull and contributing in a negative way to the whole story plot.



Another thing is the idea of the Aleph or qi or whatever metaphysical belief is to
...more
Tor Jensen
Mar 30, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was deeply disappointing and left me feeling very uneasy about the author.

It it the first book I've read by Coelho, and I my expectations were high. The premise was interesting - a sense of spiritual dissatisfaction propelling the author to undertake a series of journeys to unexplored places, meeting his readers. Unfortunately, there were no deep spiritual insights on display, only yet another banal late middle-age crisis involving a young woman.

The book centers around Coelho's journe
...more
Kholsu
Oct 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I would sum up this book in two words; “delectable revelation” of Paulo’s creativity returning on the shelves once more; it is the perfect example why this man is adored and continues to inspire many across the globe touching all ethnicities.

It was far from predictable as read in “Winner Stands Alone” and better than his other autobiography-expeditions; written in the past, such as “The Valkyries”

A Journey from A to B is one thing! But a journey made by Paulo is another experience; as it will be
...more
Dave B.
This was a wonderful and amazing book. Without realizing it the author took me on journey of self-discovery that opened my eyes to the newness of the world. I feel that this book is on par with the Alchemist. In its own unique way it continues the story. I read the Alchemist just after graduating from college. I was new to adult independent living and looking to command the world. I discover Mr. Coelho’s book the Alchemist and learn of spiritual transformations and growth. Now I am in my late 30 ...more
Matthew Trinetti
Oct 02, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How This Resonates With Me (with quotes from Aleph):

1. Just when you think you have things figured out, the universe challenges you (again).

"I have learned and unlearned how to live hundreds of times…I go through a period of euphoria, which gradually dissipates."
My journey through Europe has seen a lot of ups and downs. There are times I feel like I understand life, the world, and myself. I’m on top of the world and everything seems to fall into place. And then the universe seems to wave its fin
...more
Raji Lukkoor
I would've liked this book a lot better had it been a novel. Although I believe in spiritual journeys, I'm neither comfortable nor convinced about entering a "past life" to detect and remedy a fix for the present life.
Hilal is such a bizarre character, and frankly, it's what makes her interesting. She's emotionally immature and insecure--perhaps quite normal for a 21-yr old, but she's also aggressive, insensitive, rude, and refuses to accept no for an answer. In a strange way though, I admire he
...more
Suby
Dec 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the second book by the author I have had an opportunity to read. The first was 'The Alchemist' which I would like to read a second time.
The author while being a Portuguese speaking person from Brazil has been able to digest the Hindu principles of re-incarnations and principles of multi-universes, has also managed to bring to life the spiritual principles guiding these phenomena which our scientists can't or won't analyse!
The trance Siberian journey of over 9000 Kms is supposed to be a p
...more
Kimmy
Dec 16, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was pretty excited to read this book, especially because I have enjoyed Coelho's previous works. I have been debating between 2 and 3 stars and I guess will say 2 1/2. I felt at times this story fell flat. While I understand that this is how Coelho wants to tell part of his own story, I felt that the character comes off arrogant and at times condescending. I do not believe in reincarnation or the spiritual practices of the characters, but I know Coelho's writings and know the type of spiritual ...more
Andrea
Aug 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First of all I have to point out that this is indeed a very difficult book to read if you are not familiarized with many of the concepts written there. I found myself lost after reading some passages that didn't make sense at all, but after some struggle I finally could understand what Paulo was trying to convey. This book is obviously directed to anyone who is interested in Coelho's books. If you suddenly begin to think that this book was horrible and/or it was a waste of time, think twice, for ...more
Renée Paule
This book came to me by mistake one day. I got through a fair bit of it, but did not feel inspired in anyway and the writing style was irritating. DNF.
Ivana - Diary of Difference
Extraordinary book! Full of wisdom. It changed my view on many things regarding life and love!
Books.Paper.Mania
After finishing this book i've realized that Paulo Coelho is a lunatic! I'd hv loved this book if it was a fiction, an unreal story! But claiming the incidents to be real in this book would be considered pure madness!

It's about Paulo meeting women in past life (a life that doesn't exist in reality) & in real life! one of them is called Hilal, he meets her in Russia, she's one of these women he encountered in his past lives, she's the 5th one! The Aleph brings them together to discover themse
...more
Noora511
Nov 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
At first I found the book confusing and complicated and then as I read through I started to understand the authors intention and found the novel interesting. The lead character Paulo who coincidently is the author, embarks on a journey throughout Russia. Paulo is stuck in his life and seeks spiritual enlightenment in order to be “king of his kingdom”.

I found the book very interesting because it spoke about reincarnation and past lives, which is contrary to the beliefs of Islam. I defiantly recom
...more
Sanya
Mar 22, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017

"It is possible to avoid pain? Yes, but you'll never learn anything. Is it possible to know something without ever having experiencing it? Yes, but it will never truly be part of you."
David K. Lemons
Oct 20, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-brazil
Paulo Coelho (Brazilian) is no Jorge Luis Borges (Argentinian). Perhaps he thinks he is, but there is no comparison, not that anyone cares; but why name your book the same as Borges' brilliant short story. Even if you were anywhere as good as Borges, you wouldn't dare attempt such a thing--just out of respect for a genius who is clearly ahead of your own pretentious capabilities. ("...soft breasts with hard nipples...Really?)

I cannot stomach non-mystical mystical nonsense just to include the not
...more
Maria
May 24, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Spoiler Alert: Touted as autobiographical, the first 1/4 of the book is a conversation about spirituality between Coelho and his mentor (who seems to live in the past and whom Coelho connects with on some astral plain)... All this to determine that he is dissatisfied, bored, and seeking more from his predictable life.

Coelho then switches to the fantastical when claiming he has met a past love (as in a reincarnated self meeting his true love from 500 years ago who is also reincarnated). She just
...more
Ray
Oct 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
It takes you on a journey with the author. Like his other works, it’s all about following the language/signs of life and the symbolism presented to us on our path of personal discovery and growth etc. However, unlike his other works this is more personal and less abstract. It shows a human side to the man. We see his failures and flaws as well as his greatness. It's very personal, kind of like having a talk with the man himself and being on the journey with him. Which is quite unlike most of his ...more
Carolyn
From the start of the book, I was, and still am, somewhat confused as to why this latest novel from Paulo Coelho, author of The Alchemist, is listed as fiction. Within the library’s cataloging system, it is given the genre designation of fantasy and allegory, but all the references that I can find describe it as the actual story of Paulo’s experiences during a crisis of faith he suffered in 2006. Perhaps it all comes down to one’s belief system, but I prefer to consider it a memoir. Regardless, ...more
Lori Widmer Bean
I wanted to love this book because of the premise. A man goes on a personal journey and meets a woman from a past life. Together they explore their ancient connection and hopefully come to some conclusion.

That's how it's supposed to go. However, the premise is never fully developed and the story turns into a coming-of-middle-age fantasy for the protagonist, who is coincidentally named Paulo. There were a few flaws in the plot from my view - the author took lots of time repeating to us what the A
...more
Naj
Oct 23, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
Coelho takes you along with him on a spiritual journey of self-discovery. He writes about his sojourn across Russia and meeting a Turkish girl called Hilal who helps him discover where he is now, where he was in the past and where hes going in the future. Together they discover their destiny through the Aleph.

Paulo wrote Aleph in a very personal level. It deeply challenges one to stop and think about life and every inch of its complexity. This is a fresh read out of my usual Paranormal genre. F
...more
Becca Chopra
Nov 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I listened to an interview with Paulo Coelho and it elucidated that this is an autobiographical journey into the mystery of his past lives, as he travels the Trans-Siberian Railroad. Like his fiction, Coelho's new book offers so much wisdom, not by telling others how to find the answers, but in retelling how he finds his answers about life purpose and our place in the cosmos. I greatly enjoyed Coelho's magical experience as he lets the universe guide him on his journey, presenting Hilal, a young ...more
Lori Cox
Oct 04, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult
While I am guilty of enjoying inspirational books, I had to put this one down half way through the slim volume. Coelho, turning 60, is full of self-absorbed musings and ennui. He decides to take a train trip across Russia, dragging his editor, publisher and other assorted hanger-ons, to find the spark that is missing in his life. Evidently, a 21 one year old female provides some of that spark, but it is ok since they shared previous lives together. (Wonder if his wife is ok with that) I liked th ...more
Jordan
Nov 27, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-reads
I loved Paulo Coelho's The Alchemist, and I have read about 5 of his other books, so I gave this one a try. To be quite frank...I HATED IT!! The best part of this book for me, was the very last page! I am soooo glad it's over, and may just read The Alchemist once a year as that has been his best book! I should get 5 stars for completing this book! Yay me! :)
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The Brazilian author PAULO COELHO was born in 1947 in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Before dedicating his life completely to literature, he worked as theatre director and actor, lyricist and journalist. In 1986, PAULO COELHO did the pilgrimage to Saint James of Compostella, an experience later to be documented in his book The Pilgrimage. In the following year, COELHO published The Alchemist. Slow in ...more
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