Monday, October 14, 2013

The Journey Is NOT Always Greater Than the Destination: Melissa's The Alchemist Rant

* This rant may contain spoilers for The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. *

Disclaimer Thingy:

I love to complain! Alas, Lee has threatened me with bodily harm if I give out spoilers in my reviews. And since ranting requires something to rant about, I have not been able to fully express my book angst. At last! I have found a loophole! Mwahahaha! Do keep in mind that I am a whiny brat and I am only trying to be funny, but I will probably come off as really annoying. So, forgive me in advance.

My The Alchemist Rant:

As promised in my This Dark Endeavor review, I am writing my long awaited rant on The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. I can honestly say, out of all the books I have read in my entire life, there is only one I can say I hated with a fiery passion. That unlucky book is The Alchemist. Whenever anyone mentions anything vaguely reminiscent of that awful book, I full out rant. Ask anyone I know! They'll tell you not to mention The Alchemist, alchemy, or camels. Unless, perhaps, you want to see my wrath unleashed on the planet like the flipping apocalypse. Anyway, I was forced to read this "book" one summer for my AP English class. Here's the thing: I never minded required reading. I could always find something I liked about a book to pull me through the assignment. I could not find a single redeeming quality for this book. I do admit, however, that my intense loathing of this disaster of a book is completely irrational. That was my disclaimer, so if you happened to enjoy The Alchemist, no offense to you or your affection for this book.

The Alchemist is one of those metaphorical books that tries to teach you something and make you question everything. While I don't always have an absolute hatred for those kinds of books, I do in fact hate them. It's just like blah blah blah metaphor! Blah blah blah blah symbolism! Blah blah blah foreshadowing! I know! I get it! You don't have to hit me over the head with it like a sledgehammer. I much prefer to look into things myself. It should be more about what the book means to you than what the author is leading you into thinking. It's like brainwashing! I think what I want!

You see, I went in thinking I would enjoy this book because it's about adventure and a secret treasure, and really cool pyramids. The main character was a big dumb dumb! Santiago has just set off on his journey when he gets all his money stolen! (Perhaps I am screaming the words in my head as I write; feel free to read them as such.) Maybe it's just a New Yorker thing, but if you let something like that happen, you deserved it! And then he decides to work in a crystal shop to get some money. That took forever!!! He should have hitchhiked or some s**t! Then he meets up with his "soul mate" or something and he ditches her!!! WTF?! Why didn't she just come with?! FINALLY he gets to the place with the treasure and he gets beat up or something only to realize the treasure is where he began. Santiago's all happy about it and decides he's going back for the stupid treasure. So, he'd have to go allllll the way back home, and then come alllllll the way back for his girlfriend. Just no. Not acceptable. That is just complete insanity.

If that had happened to me, I would have dug myself a grave in the sand, gone on a murdering spree, and then slept in my grave like a vampire until some unlucky traveler walked by. Then I would hack said traveler to pieces with my axe and go on another killing spree. Perhaps that's a little violent, but I believe it is the only sane reaction to a book like that.


  1. ROFL!

    I won't comment much, I'll just leave it at The Alchemist is one of the very few books I reread and my top fave. Sorry it didn't work out for you Melissa.

  2. Wow, thank goodness I already have no interest in reading this. Sorry you had to drudge on through this reading.

  3. OMG I totally concur with you on this - I really couldn't get into The Alchemist! And I felt bad cause I didn't think I understood it or something, but now I accept that some books just aren't for me. But I'm glad that you felt the same way! :D

    1. I know exactly what you mean! Some books just aren't for certain people. :)


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