Last week, I wrote about the new Martin Sheen film The Way, in which real-life Catholic Sheen plays a man who has a journey of self-discovery along the Carmino de Santiago, a pilgrimage path also known as The Way of St. James. However, The Way is far from the first work of art to be inspired by the famous path through the Pyrenees.
Renowned Brazilian author Paulo Coehlo, probably best known for his allegorical novel The Alchemist, once walked the path himself and found himself reconnecting with his Catholic faith. His novel By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept is set there. In River Piedra (named for the river in the La Mancha region of Spain), the book’s narrator rediscovers her faith and an old love along the Carmino de Santiago. Though I haven’t seen The Way yet, I’d imagine that the two works pair nicely together. Possibly with a Spanish rioja.