Thursday, 19 June 2014

CPE book review

The Alchemist
Written by Paulo Coehlo only 26 years ago, it has been translated into more than 60 languages and read by tenths of millions around the world till now. There is such a widespread acceptance of the book (to sound more natural: the book is so widely accepted/ acknowledged/ renowned) that it is considered by many as a "classic" novel of the modern literature.
"The Alchemist" recounts the story of a poor but skilled shepherd named Santiago and it starts , the story starting to unfold in the Andalusian fields of south Spain. Although Santiago originally plans to live as a shepherd, (comma) two unexpected events make his life take an unexpected turn. After a dream of finding a great treasure near the Egyptian pyramids and a meeting with an old and strange king, Santiago sets out for a long journey in pursuit of his dream.
The book in not renowned for its glossy language nor for its complicated plot. Though the book moves at a relaxed pace , it is extremely absorbing without being dull or loose. Coehlo has a remarkable gift of story-telling that challenges your imagination using a series of unexpected turns in the flow of story line and making great use of symbolism in most of the events and hero's decisions. The reader will invariably find himself many times contemplating about his own life, dreams and choices (unnecessary: that he makes from time to time). And that is what lifts the book above others of its type. Moreover, there is a number of thought provoking scenes where the readers will stop reading and start wondering if the hero made the best decision and whether (unclear:he) the readers/ they would make the same decision under the same circumstances.
So, if you are the kind of reader that you like slow, relaxing and thought provoking reading with not much background information, (comma) this is the book for you. The end of the story (no comma) carries to the reader an air of lytrosis brings about a catharsis that will satisfy even the hardest heart. 

Comments: Great ideas and vocabulary once again, with a few more mistakes than usual. 3/5 :)


To Kill A Mockingbird

One of the most classic novels that have been written in the last century, shelved/ selected 23 times as one of the 100-books-to-read-before-you-die (or better: ‘100 Books To Read Before You Die’). Written by Harper Lee and published in 1960, (comma) this book has been loved by millions of readers and has been widely used in education. 

The story of the book takes place in a small town of the state of Alabama U.S and the central characters of the story are two children, Scout and Jem who live with their father, Atticus. Atticus is an honest lawyer who tries to be just, which is not easy since he sometimes has to deal with the prejudice and hatred of some of his fellow citizens. His children, with their innocence and lack of experience, tend to categorize people as good and bad and they feel surprised or confused when some people do not react according to this categorization. Through many real life encounters and the guidance of their father, (comma) the children gradually understand that before you judge someone you have to put yourself in his shoes and walk a mile. 

The story deals a lot with issues concerned with human morality like racism, prejudice, hatred and justice. The language is simple and though the book moves at a relaxing pace, it is extremely absorbing without being dull or loose. On the contrary, there are some extremely thought-provoking  scenes throughout the book. The writing style of Harper Lee is far from ordinary due to the fact that a child, Scout, is both the protagonist and the narrator of the story. However, that comes naturally since the story examines the perception and reaction of children to human behaviour and attitude. 

The intertemporal nature of the main theme and the easy-to-follow story-line which is presented from the point of view of a child explain much of the book's enduring popularity. As far as I know, the book remains a staple of high school and college reading lists and, in my opinion, the time spent to read this book is time well invested for sure.

Comments: The only thing that can be said is… wow! 4.5/5 

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