The Five People You Meet in Heaven is written in creative non-fiction style. A story with philosophy tidbits. The story starts with the death of Eddie ‘Maintenance’. Good ol’ Eddie works at the Ruby Pier (amusement park) as a mechanic. Nuts, bolts and grease are what he works with, every day.
On his 83rd birthday, a tragedy strikes at the amusement park. Eddie tries to save a little girl from a falling cart and gets killed in the process. He awakes in the afterlife and learns that heaven is not a destination; it is a place where your life and things that happened so far is explained to you by five people. Then, you become one of the ‘five’ for the next person who reaches heaven.
“No story sits by itself. Sometimes stories meet at corners and sometimes they cover one another completely, like stories beneath a river.”
I have mixed opinions about this book. As creative non-fiction, the story is pretty good. Good for a one-time read. If I have to dig deep into the concepts that were explained, I would say – I do not agree with the ‘five people’ thingy.
The five people that Eddie meets in heaven talk about why certain circumstances happened in Eddie’s life. How it affected them and not just Eddie. In other words, there’s always a balance in the Universe. If one dies, another life is born or saved.
“There are five people you meet in heaven,” the Blue Man suddenly said. “Each of us was in your life for a reason. You may not have known the reason at the time, and that is what heaven is for. For understanding your life on Earth.”
The concept of waiting for the next person is something I did not like. I mean, imagine you go to heaven, you meet five peeps and they explain stuff to you. Now it’s your turn to wait for the next person – you will have to wait for ages sometimes! Also, as you meet these five people, you get to re-live the pain and suffering too.
Overall, this was an okay read. I do not understand the hype about it because I, personally, didn’t find this book to be inspiring or something. Not recommended for a light read, though. Read it if you want to understand things happen for a reason.
Thanks for sharing your experience and your candid review. I haven’t read this book yet. Albom has quite an imagination!
Yes, that’s true. To come up with something like this – meeting five people in heaven and they explaining why things happened the way they did – the author must be quite imaginative.