Paulo Coelho's life remains the primary source of inspiration for his books. He has flirted with death, escaped madness, dallied with drugs, withstood torture, experimented with magic and alchemy, studied philosophy and religion, read voraciously, lost and recovered his faith and experienced the pain and pleasure of love. In searching for his own place in the world, he has discovered answers for the challenges that everyone faces. He believes that, within ourselves, we have the necessary strength to find our own destiny.
His novel The Alchemist has sold more than 65 million copies and has been cited as an inspiration by people as diverse as Malala Yousafzai and Pharrell Williams. Paulo Coelho's books have sold more than 200 million copies worldwide. He is the writer with the most followers on social media and is the most translated living author in the world. He has won 115 international prizes and awards, has been a member of the Brazilian Academy of Letters since 2002 and, in 2007, was named a United Nations Messenger of Peace.show more