Wednesday, August 27, 2008

My FIVE Buddies.....

People constantly question what the meaning of life is on a constant basis. Author Mitch Albom has attempted to answer this by trying to investigate this question not from earth, but the other side. Albom's book, The Five People you Meet in Heaven, has one central character named Eddie who meets five people who were affected by him. Within this book there are a couple of types of people Eddie meets along with a few interesting lessons that a reader can draw from each type of person.

The first type Eddie comes accross is someone who Eddie didn't even know he affected the life of. An example of this is Blue Man who Eddie killed. Eddie, in his younger years, was chasing after the ball that had drifted into the road. Blue Man, who was driving his car, slammed ont he breaks barely missing Eddie. Eventually Blue Man dies of a heart attack due to being stressed over nearly hitting Eddie with his car. Eddie, of course, never knows about Blue Man's death until after he dies himself. The main lesson for this type of person is to remember each person you run into on a daily basis, no matter how long of contact, has an effect on them either positive or negative.

The second type of person Eddie meets is a person Eddie wishes to express regret to, but refuses to do so for so long that he never gets to. Eddie's father was an abusive parent. Eventually the Eddie and his father are no longer on speaking terms. This occurs right up to after Eddie's father dies. Eddie really only gets to apologize to his fater for his actions when me meets his father in the afterlife. The main lesson in this type of person is never hold off on apologizing to another because if you refuse to do so or believe you will eventually get around to it sometime, it may never happen.

Overall Albom loves to write books that make the reader think deeply about their own lives. Throughout this book I found myself thinking about both how Eddie tragically died, how Eddie comes to reflect on his own life by meeting five others in the afterlife and how my own life compares with each of Eddie's own reflections on his life. This book is easy to do that because the author vividly describes the settings and characters while advancing the plot in a fairly consistant fashion without dragging. By the end of the book, I'm not only glad I've learnedthe answer to Eddie's question of "did I save that little girl's life?", but am also reflecting on who my five buddies I will meet once I head to heaven.

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