The Devil and Paulo Coelho

paulo coelho

Credits: Google

I’ve begun to lose interest in Paulo Coelho. And trust me, I don’t want to.

Every time I open one of his books, I look for that something I found in The Witch of Portobello. I loved that book, and in comparison, both books I read afterward (By the River Piedra I sat Down and Wept and The Devil and Miss Prym) ended up disappointing me.

The thing with The Devil and Miss Prym is that I got lost plenty of times while reading the book. I admit, I was sleep deprived, but even so, the book was a painful read. Plus, I had a bus journey of about 6 hours to look forward to, and the book was my sole companion.

I almost forced myself to finish reading this book. It’s one of those stupid things they call closure. Unless I finish reading a book, it keeps popping up in my head, bugging me, torturing me, and making me feel all kinds of guilty.

So I leaned back in my seat and, stifling my yawn to avoid my neighbour from judging me, opened the lovely-coloured cover. And every five minutes, I had to tear my eyes off the view of the street and get back into the book. That’s how slow it went.

But with all respect, the book wasn’t all a loser. It was nice, and parts of it were great. With a simple narrative, a solid story, and some good characterisation, it was a decent read.

It just wasn’t my type.

Perhaps it’s just me, but I’ve started to think Paulo Coelho is trying too hard to be philosophical and spiritual. All this talk about what’s right and what’s not, the co-existence of devils and angels, evil and good, the question of conscience, and the unmistakable victory of all things good — and here I am wondering what’s new. It’s the “same ol’ same ol’” story.

But I don’ want to give up yet. One, because I still hope Paulo Coelho had written something as captivating as Athena’s story. And two, because I had already bought a boxed set of his books that I don’t want to leave unread. Oh, and the covers — they’re beautiful with luring fresh print, and my mind seeks closure.

Part of me wants to give up on Paulo Coelho — at least for the time being, but the bigger part of me wants to read the other books too — just in case. I don’t want to miss a great book, just because I didn’t like a couple.



  1. Paulo used to be on the top list of my favourite authors but it was’nt untill I familiarised myself with Khaled Hosseini. The only Paulo’s I’ve gone through are The Alcemist, Eleven Minutes, The Zahir. So far, those for me are enough.



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