By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept
by Paulo Coelho
Paperback, 208 pages
Published on: May 23rd 1994
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Rarely does adolescent love reach its full potential, but what happens when two young lovers reunite after eleven years? Time has transformed Pilar into a strong and independent woman, while her devoted childhood friend has grown into a handsome and charismatic spiritual leader. She has learned well how to bury her feelings . . . and he has turned to religion as a refuge from his raging inner conflicts.
Now they are together once again, embarking on a journey fraught with difficulties, as long-buried demons of blame and resentment resurface after more than a decade. But in a small village in the French Pyrenees, by the waters of the River Piedra, a most special relationship will be reexamined in the dazzling light of some of life's biggest questions.
The love story with all the pains and sorrows that surround it and all the inspirations that the book brings is what makes By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept one of the best books of Paulo Coelho.
“The moment we begin to seek love, love begins to seek us. And to save us,” says Coelho in the book.
But is this just a love story? And that too written by Coelho? If that’s what you’re thinking, read on!
I love it when a book makes you feel and think, and you just can't put it down. And when you finish it, you don't want to let it go. This story touched me deep inside. It's not simply about the love between Pilar and the man she loves. It is rather about their love for God. But this book is so much more than your average contemporary love story.
By the River Piedra I sat Down and Wept will have you looking into your soul. Coelho gives us the idea of the feminine side 0f God, which you’ll hardly ever find anywhere else. According to me his stories might have simple life lessons but he often tells it in ways that seem to touch many people -- and I am one of those people. They are good simple lessons that come from Coelho’s heart.
It is not that you need to believe in the feminine side of God and everything Coelho says in the book. Or even about the presence of God in things like water or anything of that sort. I am a Muslim and I cannot believe this but Coelho does make you feel from within that Faces are not the things worth looking for in the world. Life and divinity are different from what we think of them to be.
Yet, I felt like the book repeated itself and nothing new was introduced in the second half, nothing dynamic happened and the climax of the story came and went without much notice. Compared to The Alchemist or any of his other books, this seems to be a little lazy attempt. And maybe because I do not believe in it, the feminine side of God thing made it a little boring for me.
Can philosophy, inspiration, spirituality and Coelho be kept apart? Never! You fill find everything in the book that keeps you gripped to the other books by Coelho.
For the ones, who want to try out with Coelho’s books and are romance readers, I recommend them to read this one for a start. And yes, if possible, read it twice. You’ll get different connotations every next time you read it. At least, that was what happened to me.
Review originally published on: http://vaultofbooks.com/bplus/review-by-the-river-piedra