The Five People You Meet In Heaven
By Mitch Albom
Published: 2nd September 2004
‘All endings are also beginnings. We just don’t know it at the time…’
On his eighty-third birthday, Eddie, a lonely war veteran, dies in a tragic accident trying to save a little girl from a falling cart. With his final breath, he feels two small hands in his – and then nothing. He awakens in the afterlife, where he learns that heaven is not a lush Garden of Eden but a place where your earthly life is explained to you by five people who were in it. These people may have been loved ones or distant strangers. Yet each of them changed your path forever.
I chose this book because the blurb took my interest. It made me want to learn more about this author’s version of heaven, and find out what made this depiction of heaven different to others. I really wanted to find out who the five people are in relation to the character, and what happens to Eddie after he has had his life explained to him.
The first chapter immediately explains the circumstances surrounding Eddie’s demise. I liked that it counted down the minutes until the accident, as it created suspense and drove me forward. I think if the story started with Eddie’s past I wouldn’t have been as gripped as I was. Throughout the events leading to Eddie’s death, I got a good sense of the character which really propelled me forward. The dialogue throughout the story was believable and I liked Eddie’s voice. I quickly empathised with the character as he made me think of my own granddad.
The beginning of each chapter reflects on a selection of Eddie’s birthdays throughout his life. Each is significant and gives enough back-story to give the character dimension and piece together the lessons of his life. The end of each chapter leaves you wanting more, and kept me turning the page.
I really enjoyed the author’s description of heaven. I hadn’t read anything quite like it so I appreciated its uniqueness. The author made me believe that this type of heaven could exist and it made complete sense, and I enjoyed finding out the way it worked.
Each of the five people Eddie meets in heaven gives him a different perspective on his life, and taught him a lesson. I liked finding out how the five people are connected to Eddie’s life, and I raced through to find out who the next person would be. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I was eager to find the connection and guess who the next person would be.
It was thought provoking that seemingly insignificant events can affect people, and that those people could be complete strangers. I liked how the author weaves Eddie’s ‘insignificant’ moments with pivotal events, and a mix of strangers and loved ones. I particularly enjoyed the strangers that Eddie meets in heaven, and the little moments that affected them.
Overall thoughts, I enjoyed this book. I found it an easy read, something I imagine people reading on a train. It made me sad at times, as it made me think of the people I’d like to meet if I went to this heaven. It left a lasting impression on me, it made me consider the little things, and how they could affect people’s lives.
I would recommend this book, it’s a book that I would read again another time.
If you’d like to get yourself a copy: Amazon link