(1947-) Brazilian novelist/UNESCO special counsellor, committed twice to a mental institution, imprisoned and tortured after he joined an anarchist group. In 1986, Coelho walked the 500-plus mile Road of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain, on the path, Coelho had a spiritual awakening. He writes a novel every 2 years. He is named messenger for peace to the UN. The Alchemist was in Guinness World Records for the most translated book by a living author. The majority of his work is fiction rooted in his own experiences.