The Five People You Meet in Heaven
by Mitch Albom
I heard this story was so good (as in a must read with an explanation mark) from multiple people, and I came across a book review on it one day (whilst blog surfing), so I thought I might aswell get the book. The book seemed pretty self-explanatory (the book is as the title says).
On Eddie’s eighty-third birthday he dies trying to save a young girl from a cart. This is where the story begins, however all endings are also beginnings. Eddie is take to heaven, which is not the garden of Eden which we know it as, instead it is a place where you meet five people who have influenced your life in one way or another. Each person Eddie meets have made him the man he is, and he is given answers to the questions which could not be explained in he’s life on earth.
The book looks back on Eddie’s life, looking at significant birthdays and relevant scenarios in he’s life which have shaped ‘grown up Eddie’. I must admit the beginning of the story was flat to me, Eddie is introduced as a simple character, an old guy who isn’t in great condition (dodgy leg, fractured nose, scars) who at the age of eighty three is (still) the maintenance guy at he’s local fun fair.
Eddie admits to thinking that he had a pointless life, by the end of the novel when he has met all five people he is shown the reason for he’s existence. Once Eddie met he’s first person in heaven I was hooked and wanted to read on so I could put Eddie’s life together. He went from being boring Eddie; to the man who had survived war with a big heart who cared deeply about he’s family. The author flowed from the scenes of Eddie’s life to the lessons in learnt very well, as each person Eddie encounters in heaven shows him a scenario which he is familiar with from a different point of view to tell a new story.
The aim of meeting these people is so that he’s questions are answered and for him to be at peace with himself. Each character reveals to Eddie the difference they made to he’s life whilst teaching him valuable lessons along the way. He is taught about life and death, sacrifice, loyalty, love and forgiveness.
I must admit it is not the strongest story I have ever read; however there is an amazing message behind it and I would say that Albom put he’s idea of life and heaven across successfully. The author expresses actions and consequences in a unique way which made me reflect on my own life/. There are also many quotes which make complete sense despite being obvious.
I would recommend this to anyone. It is such an easy read, each chapter is clearly labelled and the message is clear. It is also nice to hear of a ‘happily ever after’ afterlife story.
“Sometimes when you sacrifice something precious, you’re not really losing it. You’re just passing it on to someone else.”
“The only time we waste is the time we spend thinking we are alone.”