By: Paulo Coelho
Location: FIC COE
Genre: Historical motivation?
The writer of The Alchemist has a new book out, set in Jerusalem, based from documents found in Accra- Ghana. Now there is a trifecta that works for me- loved the Alchemist, been to both Jerusalem and Accra and have a soft spot for both cities. What could go wrong?
This book firstly is not a novel- it is more like "A survival guide for life : how to achieve your goals, thrive in adversity and
grow in character" by Bear Grylls but set historically- not in the outdoors. It is a series of wise sayings from a Copt- a spiritual man based in the siege of Jerusalem in 1099 during a crusade.Its premise is that the inhabitants of the wall city were about to perish as the "crusaders"- the bad ones- not the Rugby players- were about to skittle the city and kill the people in the name of the pope. Life was short- one day left- so what do you say, do, think, how do you mentally steal yourself for a bloody murderous death. The Copt gave the people within the city time to reflect, to ask hard questions of life, death, love, fear, miracles, change, defeat and loyalty. The Copt is a wise sage and he offers his wisdom- Bear Grylls styles in a 1099AD way.
It is a motivational book not a novel. It does tell a story but vaguely, what this book wants you to do- is become wise. It is a book to pick up and put down and it has bucket loads of one liners to enrich and enlarge our being!
Left me wanting a real novel though with Jerusalem and Accra in it all entwined up together, with history and the now. I know some characters that would make amazing protagionists if anyone wants to take up the challenge!!