The Archer by Paulo Coelho

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I finished reading The Archer a few days ago and hoped the right words would eventually come to mind, but they haven’t. I’m still in awe of the simplicity and depth of this short work.

Originally published in 2003 as The Way of the Bow, it was retitled and republished in 2020. The Archer tells of a young man who comes to Tetsuya, a carpenter, to “test” his skills as an archer. We learn that Tetsuya is not just a carpenter, but is also a master archer who is humble and pursuing a different path in life. A young boy learns of Tetsuya’s skills and asks to be taught the way of bow, and The Archer is, in short, Tetsuya’s lessons.

Every page possesses a simple principle or thought relating to either the bow, the arrow, the bowstring, and personal aspects of archery, but every page is also so deep and applicable to life in general.

If you have read and enjoyed The Alchemist, you’ll be familiar with Coelho’s words-behind-the-words approach to presenting an allegory. Through Tetsuya’s lessons, we learn to master oneself, to take risks, to remain humble, to find inner peace, and to control only that which we have control over.

This book has landed on my top 10 books of all time with its first read. I cannot recommend this book enough to anyone who is pursuing their dream.

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