The Valkyries : An Encounter with Angels by Paulo Coelho ; Translated by Alan R. Clarke
New York : HarperCollins Publishers, 1995. First American edition; first printing. Full numbers line on copyright page. Hardcover. 245 pages ; 22 cm. Price-clipped dust jacket with minimal wear. Purple and light brown cover board with gilt title at spine. Pages are clean and unmarked. Binding is firm.
"What are the three conditions for conversing with one's angel?" Paulo asked as she was about to leave.
"Break a pact. Accept forgiveness. And make a bet,"
The enchanting, true story of The Valkyries begins in Rio de Janeiro when Paulo Coelho gives his mysterious master, J., the only manuscript for his book The Alchemist. Haunted by a devastating curse, he confesses to J., "I've seen my dreams fall apart just when I seemed about to achieve them." In response, J. gives Paulo a daunting task: he must find and speak with his guardian angel, "The curse can be broken," J. replies, "if you complete the task."
Rising to the challenge of this spiritual gauntlet, Paulo and his wife, Chris, drop everything, pack their bags, and take off on a forty day adventure into the starkly beautiful and sometimes dangerous Mojave Desert—where they encounter much more than they bargained for.
There's the wise, twenty-two-year-old Master of the Tradition, Gene, who lives in a lone trailer on the edge of the desert and begins Chris's initiation into the mystical, wondrous world of magic. There's Paulo's dark past, which he must confront and overcome in order to speak with his angel and break the curse. There's the desert itself, with its sun-drenched dust, never-ending vistas, and breathtaking sunsets. There are the Valkyries—a band of bold, leather-clad women who travel the desert on motorcycles, spreading the word of angels—led by a redmaned woman warrior named Valhalla/And there are the elusive yet ever-present guardian angels, who hold the secret keys to the gates of our happiness.
At once a modern-day adventure, a metaphysical bat¬tle with self-doubt and fear, a true story of two people struggling to understand one another, and a supernatural encounter with angels, The Valkyries is ultimately a story about forgiving our past and believing in our future.
"Among Latin American writers only Colombia's Gabriel Garcia Marquez is more widely read than Brazil's Paulo Coelho"(The Economist). Coelho's books have won numerous awards and are permanent fixtures on bestseller lists in Brazil and around the world. He and his wife, Christina, live in Rio de Janeiro.
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