Brazilian author Paulo Coelho’s allegorical novel of a Spanish shepherd has inspired millions of readers to set out searching for their own personal treasures. Paulo Coelho kept faith that The Alchemist would be successful. A second Brazilian publisher gave Paulo Coelho and The Alchemist another shot. Even as The Alchemist became an international success, Coelho ensured that each new translation had local flavor. I think you can have 10,000 explanations for failure, but no good explanation for success,” Coelho said.