The Zahir (Paulo Coelho)

I just finished reading “The Zahir” by Paulo Coelho. The first book I read by him was “The Alchemist“, which I found to be a very inspiring book that I really enjoyed; after that I’ve been going back to read one of his books every now and then.

The Zahir feels a bit different from his other books, maybe because it feels closer to reality, takes place in a modern day setting and all, but it still has the same inspiring style that makes you take a step back to look at your life, certain aspects of it, evaluate yourself and think of where you’ve gone wrong and where you’ve been right.

This book handles the issues of love, belonging, obsession, relationships and understanding; taking the reader on a pretty incredible ride with the story of a couple in love who grow apart leaving the husband in a sea of loss, obsession, heartbreak and misunderstanding, on a journey to understand himself, his wife, relationships and life.
Throughout this journey with the main character, the reader finds himself looking at his relationship with his loved one, analyzing it, connecting with the character on some points, understanding it, knowing where he might be going wrong and how he might correct certain things.

I’ve read many blog posts by people who think Paulo Coelho’s books are overrated, uninspiring and even mediocre; but maybe it’s just that they didn’t relate to the topic or that they didn’t pick up on the small ideas he presents for further thinking and development.

Personally, what I enjoy about his books, more than the story, the characters, the places and everything else, are the lines of thought that I go on on my own at different points of the book.

I do recommend this book, especially for people who are in a relationship, because even if their relationship with their loved one is going perfectly, this book and the thoughts in it could help them understand it better and avoid certain mistakes as it goes along.

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Mohamed Marwen Meddah is a web development director, amateur photographer and web enthusiast from Tunisia, currently living in Canada.

10 thoughts on “The Zahir (Paulo Coelho)”

  1. I’ve read the French translation ! Amazing, fabulous… so, this book is also recommended for the eternal singles 😛

    Paolo Coelho’s books trail the life as it is ! The inner relationship with one’s thoughts, bahaviour… the fights one can lead… It’s a mixture of realism and an invitation to a further explanation and understanding of the story !

    “Personally, what I enjoy about his books, more than the story, the characters, the places and everything else, are the lines of thought that I go on on my own at different points of the book”. It’s all said !


  2. hello!
    I’m also a big Paulo Coelho’s fan and I don’t know if you heard about his blog
    I’ve started as a fan and now I’m collaborating with him and thought that you would like to enter his universe.
    Check the blog.
    if you want, or subscribe to his newsletter
    You’ll see a community of warriors of light sharing ideas, dreams and most importantly following their personal legend.


    The universe is going to help the Warrior of Light.
    (Manual of the Warrior of Light)

    See u there and have a great day!


  3. Well to the truth I do feel Coelho’s books are overrated:)

    I really was happy to finish this book. It was too simple and I felt no spirituality what so ever. The lessons he wants to deliver are too clear cut for me. Things that I already know and are too simplified. Its not how life goes.

    The only thing I liked about the book is when he mentioned the favor bank and how it works since it got me to Wolfe’s book “The bonfire of vanities”. I prefer Kundera’s writings on relationships, they are more mind enriching:)

    Try reading “The unbearable lightness of being” 🙂

  4. To say the truth I belong to the crowd that things his books are overrated:)

    I was happy to finish this one:) It was just too simple and it didn’t really inspire me. I prefer Kunera’s writing about relationships. They are more mind enriching:)

    I only liked the part where he talked about the favor bank cause it led me to Tom Wolfe’s book “The Bonfire of Vanities”

    Try” the unbearable lightness of being” by Kundera, its a good read!

  5. Hello, Paulo Coelho got wind of your blog and wants to post this article on his blog.
    Paulo Coelho’s blog
    In case you have any restrictions, do not hesitate to write me on my email :
    Have a wonderful day!

    And here’s a quote to ponder:
    The Warrior of the Light does not postpone making decisions.
    (Warrior of the Light)


  6. I absolutely agree. I read this book after reading “The Alchemist” and while many components of the books vary greatly, it still touches the reader for its honest observation of life and relationships.

  7. I read The Alchemist and was very inspired by it, so I just finished The Zahir. I, too, feel the stories are simple, yet beautiful. I related to The Zahir on a very real level. But it is his pithy little lines that stay with me too; they spark my spirit,make me think–that is why I love his books and will read his work again.

  8. i want to know how the story continues – does Esther stay with her husband or do they go their separate ways – i think they do not stay together -someone please tell me what you think.

  9. having read the half part of the book, i totally agree to this comment, really makes me having a trip to deep inside of me…

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