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The Next Person You Meet in Heaven

Review

The Next Person You Meet in Heaven

Fifteen years ago, I had the pleasure of reading and reviewing Mitch Albom’s enchanting THE FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN. I, like thousands of other readers, was enthralled by this moving story of Eddie, a carnival worker whose selfless act saved the life of five-year-old Annie but ended his own. And in Eddie’s afterlife, he meets five individuals who influenced his time on earth in ways both large and small.

For many fans of Albom, it was a story of hope, survival (even after death) and redemption --- a celebration that an ending is sometimes a beginning. And, most importantly for Eddie, the story of how much he mattered, even if he never realized it during his lifetime.

"As he has done before, Albom offers hope in a magical story of life and death and life again."

Now, all these years later, Albom has written THE NEXT PERSON YOU MEET IN HEAVEN. If you ever wondered what became of young Annie, this is her tale. The sequel recounts the accident that killed Eddie, severed Annie’s hand, and left her with no memory of the incident. Her mother moves her about and lands her in a school where she has trouble fitting in, with the exception of one friendship: Paulo. Just as she begins to experience the joys of friendship, Paulo’s family relocates.

Fast forward, and Annie has become a nurse. Walking the halls of her hospital one day, she spots amongst a construction crew her long-lost Paulo. The two quickly rekindle their friendship, fall in love and marry. On the morning after their wedding, an inconceivable tragedy ends Annie’s bliss, sending her to heaven, where she meets her five people --- and then one more.

In Albom’s hallmark storytelling brilliance, what happens in Annie’s afterlife reveals to her the parts of her time on earth that she had been missing and gives her an understanding she had longed for in her youth. As with all of his books, THE NEXT PERSON YOU MEET IN HEAVEN acknowledges that we don’t always know how much we meant to someone or the role that we played in their lives. The twists and surprises here are reminders of just how unexpected and joyous life can be. As he has done before, Albom offers hope in a magical story of life and death and life again.

Reviewed by Roberta O'Hara on October 12, 2018

The Next Person You Meet in Heaven
by Mitch Albom

  • Publication Date: October 9, 2018
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Harper
  • ISBN-10: 006229444X
  • ISBN-13: 9780062294449