In this allegorical novel, an old man tells a  boy, “God has prepared a path for everyone  to follow. You just have to read the omens  that he left for you.” In the introduction of  The Alchemist, the author, Paulo Coelho,  tells us, “Like the shepherd boy, we all  need to be aware of our personal calling.”   How does this nonfiction book about a boy  traveling through the Sahara Desert relate  to a nonfiction book about living pterosaurs  in North America? It’s in a mistake made  on Wikipedia: a reference to the worldwide  sales of The Alchemist. Before Januaruy 17, 2012, the Wikipedia  page on The Alchemist said, “It has sold  more than 65 million copies in more than  150 countries.” On that day, Jonathan  Whitcomb, a volunteer Wikipedia editor  and author of the nonfiction book Live  Pterosaurs in America, noticed that figure  on book sales of The Alchemist. He had just  finished reading the book, delighting in its  message and delivery, but the “65 million”  reminded him of two things.   The back cover of the English paperback  that Whitcomb had just read referred to the  number of copies sold of all the books by  Paulo Coelho, not just The Alchemist. It  was “more than 65 million copies in 150  countries.” It looked like too much for a  coincidence, so he searched the author’s  personal web site and found, on the page  for The Alchemist, “twenty-one million  copies worldwide.” Whitcomb then made  corrections on the Wikipedia page.   But he had seen “65 million” long before  he had encountered The Alchemist. That  number had been used, for years, to ridicule  Whitcomb’s concept of modern living  pterosaurs, for standard Western models of  biology proclaim all species of dinosaurs  and pterosaurs extinct by sixty-five million  years ago. The nonfiction author, however,  maintains that the assumption of universal  extinction is a mistaken overblown dogma,  for eyewitnesses from around the world tell  a different story.   Learn for yourself about the amazing encounters in the United States.  Read the third edition of the nonfiction book Live Pterosaurs in America, and become one of those who understand the truth about pterosaur “extinction:” Some species are still living. Copyright 2012 Jonathan David Whitcomb The Alchemist The Alchemist Live Pterosaurs in America and how it relates to the nonfiction book Live Pterosaurs in America      Amazon Reviews of The Alchemist   Editorial Review (in part)  “The Alchemist presents a simple fable, based on simple  truths and places it in a highly unique situation. . . .  Brazilian storyteller Paulo Coehlo introduces Santiago, an  Andalusian shepherd boy who one night dreams of a  distant treasure in the Egyptian pyramids. And so he's off:  leaving Spain to literally follow his dream.”   One of the Most Powerful Books Ever Written (5 Stars) “Do not approach this story with the idea that Paulo  Coelho is a master of prose. His simple style may turn off  those more acquainted with bombastic, grandiose, or  aggrandizing diction. Coelho's style can best be described  as biblical. I personally love the simplistic, bold, and terse  nature of the writing. If you cannot develop a taste for this  style, at least understand the audience he was writing for.  This book is, after all, has been translated into a huge  number of languages worldwide. No doubt, a lot of  Coelho's idiosyncrasies are lost in translation. Still, even  after multiple reads it still manages to reach a level of  near sublimity.”   A Peek into Your Own Backyard (4 Stars) “A little treasure...I can't believe this book had escaped  my eyes all these years. Very simple in style and form,  The Alchemist hammers home the power of patience,  persistence, and positive thinking. It is a bit over-  whelming and preachy at times . . . It was heartwarming  to see the character evolve from a simple shepherd to a  wise young man that boldly risked his life to not only  follow his dreams, but also conquer his inner demons.  Thank you, Paulo Coelho. . . .” Empowering and Enchanting (5 Stars)  “I recommend this book to anyone who has ever had a  dream and has doubted whether or not they should follow  it. Easy book to read, and it easily draws you in to this  fable like world. So many lines in this story that I  highlighted and want to remember. I definitely am going  to read another Pablo Coelho Book.”   Spirituality for the “light” reader (3 Stars) “I can't count the times I have come across this book  (usually in airport book shops . . .) sensing that it was just  too sentimental for my tastes. Well, my hunches were  right, but to be fair, this could be a meaningful read for  people who are not usually drawn to fiction or spiritual  reading. And if you are looking for something uplifting,  you will get that here, but it's cliche throughout--which is  ok for a younger crowd--say, 14-15 year-olds, but there  are adults who are inspired by the simple message here!  Fine, but my taste tends to go deeper.” (From Kellene Okonkwo: 5 Stars) “I read the reviews regarding the Alchemist and I was  shocked when I read the negative reviews. I myself read  the book for the third time yesterday and was once again  lifted up. Yes it is a feel good book but so what. Should I  read something that depresses me and makes me  remember the evils of the world? Yes it is very simple so  everyone at every age can grasp the important lessons in  life this book has to offer.” Thought-Provoking (5 Stars) “This is a difficult review to write. From the perspective  of historical fiction this book is not so much. It's a tale. A  thought-provoking tale. The tale taps into the seeker of  truth in all of us. I enjoyed contemplating the lessons in  this book far more than I enjoyed the simplistic writing  style, which was overly and blatantly simplistic . . .”   Where an apparent ropen may have landed in a wildlife sanctuary in Southern California around Irvine.