President Vladimir Putin met with Brazilian author Paulo Coelho, who shared his impressions of a two-week journey across Russia by train.
Chatting with Coelho at his residence outside Moscow, Putin suggested similarities between Brazilians and Russians are behind the strong popularity of his books in Russia.
"Despite the large distance between Russia and Brazil, there is probably something in the souls of the Russian and Brazilian people that unites us; this is why what you write, or rather the way you write, hits close to the heart for a Russian person," Putin said in televised comments.
Coelho, a best-selling author in Russia, traveled from Moscow to Vladivostok by rail, making stops along the way. He said that when he saw Siberia’s Lake Baikal, the world’s deepest freshwater lake, he knew he had to take a dip despite the frigid temperature of 4 degrees Celsius (39 degrees Fahrenheit).
"Brazilians are stronger," Putin joked. "Not everybody here would have the courage."
Putin said he had enjoyed books by Coelho including "The Alchemist," an inspirational tale about a shepherd boy, and "Warrior of the Light: A Manual,"
Pravda – www.pravda.ru