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The witch of Portobello by Pablo Coelho

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Do you realize the similar sound between “Portobello” and “Pablo Coelho”? It seems that Athena is the female manifestation of the author.

Though Pablo Coelho used the method of different people telling the story of the main character, it seems like the same person telling the story – the same person just play different roles. The most challenging part of utilizing such a method is that the writer has to use a unique style of language for each person. A person always has his or her uniqueness in speaking and writing, even if he or she is influenced by many factors, he will retain his own style of language.

“I’m finally coming to accept that I was only a temporary inhabitant, there as a favour, like someone who finds himself in a beautiful mansion, eating exquisite food, aware that this is only a party, that the mansions belongs to someone else, that the food was bought by someone else, and that the time will come when the lights will go out, the owners will go to bed, the servants will return to their quarters, the door will close, and he’ll be out in the street again, waiting for a taxi or a bus to restore him to the mediocrity of his everyday life.” page 6. Reminiscence of the best conference I have attended so far.

Having degrees does not necessarily mean that we can manage to find the job or work that we want. People went to university because of someone, at a time when universities seemed important, said that, in order to rise in the world, we have to have a degree. Not only in this book, Pablo argued that because of this, the world lack some excellent gardeners, bakers, scultpors, and writers. Blueroselady predicts that in the near future, there will be university courses on gardening, advanced gardening, gastronomy, etc. In fact, there are many degrees offered on literature for aspiring writers. page 31.

“My experience as a manager had taught me to recognize people’s states of mind, even if they said nothing. On a management course I attended, we learned that if you wanted to get rid of someone, you should do everything you can to provoke them into rudeness, so that you would then have a perfectly good reason to dismiss them.”, Peter Sherney, 47, manager of a branch of [name of Bank omitted] in Holland Park, London. page 66. Beware of your jealous bosses and colleagues, no matter what happen, do not get into rudeness.

“You can’t measure love the way you can the length of a road or the height of a building.” page 45.

“What is a teacher? It is not someone who teaches something, but someone who inspires the student to give of her best in order to discover what she already knows.” page 86.

“I’ve learned to be friendly, attentive, discreet, because my business depends on that.” Vosho Bushalo, a gypsy and a restaurant owner. page 115.

Athena mum found that her husband needed his work, not because of the money, but out of a need to be useful, to prove that an exile also honours his committment. page 139. Do you work to feel useful too?

“Faith is not desire. Faith is will. Desires are things that need to be satisfied, whereas Will is a force. Will changes the space around us, but for that you also need Desire.” page 145.

“My first lesson as a teacher: teach those who want to learn. The reason doesn’t matter.” page 157.

“Try to feel good about yourself even when you feel like the least worthy of creatures. Reject all those negative thoughts and let the Mother take possession of your body and soul; surrender yourself to dance or to silence or to ordinary, everyday activities – like taking your son to school, preparing supper, making sure the house is tidy. Everything is worship if your mind is focused on the present moment.” page 164.

“Laugh at your worries and insecurities. View your anxiety with humour.” page 167.

“Groups challenge us. Groups allow us to choose our affinities. Groups create a collective energy, and ecstasy comes more easily because everyone infects everyone else.”

“It is well to give when asked, but it is better to give unasked” Khalil Gibran. page 174.

“Athena is a difficult person to get to know.” Ryan. “That’s precisely why men must find her so fascinating. She awakens that rapidly disappearing protective instinct of yours.” Andrea. page 183.

Reading this book made me wonder on Transylvania in Romania, perhaps I should visit that place sometimes in the future.

Blueroselady thinks that the love between Athena and the Scotland Yard detective, two persons from two different world, is wonderful.

I promise that I will not read any fictional book until I finish my thesis.

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Written by blueroselady

March 17, 2010 at 1:39 pm

Posted in book

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