“Manuscript Found in Accra”

I was very confused by this newest book by Paulo Coelho.  I expected a story set in ancient times.   In actuality, there is no story.  What Coelho has written is a book of reflections on how to live a good life.  The “story” is based on a manuscript discovered by an English archeologist, Sir Walter Wilkinson.  Through the process of Carbon 14 tests, it was revealed that the manuscript was not an original but a copy that was probably written   around AD 1307.  Coelho prefaces the story by saying that he received a copy of the manuscript from the son of the archeologist.  His book “Manuscript Found in Accra” is a translation of the manuscript.  After some digging I found that this aspect of the story is true.  The translation is the fiction.

In the story a mystic referred to as the Copt speaks to various people who are awaiting the invasion of Jerusalem by the Crusaders.  He tailors his advice to each group who is facing this invasion.  He offers heart-felt wisdom on how to appreciate and evaluate the life that we have been given.

This is only the second book I have read by Coelho.  While I found this novel interesting, it is not what I expected.

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