The Five People You Meet in Heaven.pdf
This is a well-intentioned novel about a man who dies and goes to heaven, finding there a meaning to his life. For this fable Albom has chosen an unlikely character, an old and lonely man who, like his father before him, services rides in an amusement park. Because Eddie has the word 'maintenance' on his uniform, to his work mates and regular customers he has become just that - Eddie Maintenance. Genial and indulgent to the children, he finds little else to cheer him and when the accident that he has always dreaded happens he asks everyone he meets in the afterlife if he had at least managed to save the small girl who was playing under the roller coaster. He has to wait a long time for the answer, as the five people waiting for him have their own agenda. Eddie recognizes some of them and is familiar with the place they inhabit but others are strangers to him even if their lives have touched. There is a message in this book, indeed several messages. Before he can find peace Eddie must learn to listen and absorb what those chosen to welcome him have to teach. The lessons are sincere and carefully explained; they are illustrated like parables and are repeatedly summed up to make sure that they are understood. All the sentiments fit into religious teaching; for example, the captain who died in the war just after saving Eddies's life explains that sacrifice is a part of life, a good and necessary part. For the reader who fears whimsy there are more down-to-earth pages, scenes from Eddie's childhood and family life, passages which show how his death affects those left to take over his repair shop. But it's far too bland, a bit like a thought for the day aimed at those who believe in God and life after death. If there were Sunday Schools for adults this would be the prize. (Kirkus UK)
'Simple, unaffected and written with great feeling'
"I'm especially proud to have an audio version of this book, since it harkens back to the way my first stories came to me--not by the written page, but by other people's voices." That's Mitch Albom himself in his introduction. This writer's commitment to the aural tradition is clearly demonstrated in the sophistication with which his book is presented. Erik Singer's virtuoso performance is set off with musical interludes and background noises that are diverting but never distracting. The teaching parable is built around an 83-year-old war vet turned maintenance man who dies trying to save the life of a little girl. This is at the Ruby Point Amusement Park. "All endings are also beginnings. We just don't know it at the time..." B.H.C. 2004 Audie Award Finalist © AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine
'Albom has done it again... FIVE PEOPLE is a powerful book, powerful enough to make one's inner snob feel a little uncomfortable...Albom has touched the lives of a lot of people he never even knew. If there is a heaven, he can expect to have around 5.7 million people waiting for him there' TIME '[Eddie] learns not only about his life but also about what his time on earth meant. It is simple, unaffected and written with great feeling' PUBLISHING NEWS 'Simply told, sentimental and profoundly true, this is a contemporary American fable that will be cherished by a vast readership ... this slim tale, like Charles Dickens's A CHRISTMAS CAROL, reminds us of what really matters here of earth, of what our lives are given to us for' PUBLISHERS WEEKLY 'Mitch Albom lifts us to a new level ... You'll find here echoes of the classics - The Odyssey for one - and that puts Albom's book in the best of company' Frank McCourt, author of ANGELA'S ASHES 'This book is a gift to the soul' Amy Tan, author of THE BONESETTER'S DAUGHTER
Mitch Albom writes for the Detroit Free Press and has been voted America's No. 1 sports columnist ten times by the Associated Press Sports Editors. A former professional musician, he hosts a daily radio show on WJR in Detroit.
THE FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN is a wonderfully moving fable that addresses the meaning of life, and life after death, in the poignant way that made TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE such an astonishing book. The novel's protagonist is an elderly amusement park maintenance worker named Eddie who, while operating a ride called the 'Free Fall', dies while trying to save a young girl who gets in the way of a falling cart that hurtles to earth. Eddie goes to heaven, where he meets five people who were unexpectedly instrumental in some way in his life. While each guide takes him through heaven, Eddie learns a little bit more about what his time on earth meant, what he was supposed to have learned, and what his true purpose on earth was. Throughout there are dramatic flashbacks where we see scenes from his troubled childhood, his years in the army in the Philippines jungle, and with his first and only love, his wife Marguerite. THE FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN is the perfect book to follow TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE. Its compellingly affecting themes and lyrical writing will fascinate Mitch Albom's huge readership.