Sunday, February 23, 2014

February BOOK CLUB with Meredith E F

Meredith had several books to choose from. I have included some information about each book. Let us know what you think !!

“THE FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN” by Mitch Albom, published 2003

Killed in a tragic accident, Eddie, an elderly man who believes that he had an uninspired life, awakens in the afterlife, where he discovers that heaven consists of having five people explain the meaning of one's life.

Sports columnist, radio talk-show host, and author of Tuesdays with Morrie, Albom has written a parable quite different from his best-selling memoir about his old professor but with the potential to follow it as a favorite of the book club circuit. At an oceanside amusement part, 83-year-old maintenance mechanic Eddie is killed while trying to save a little girl. Instead of floating through the cliched tunnel-and-light territory, Eddie meets five people whose lives intersected with his during his time on Earth. The novel comes down firmly on the side of those who feel that life matters, that what we do as individuals matters, and that in the end there will be a quiz. The touchy-feely phobic need not be afraid: this is not judgmental ax-grinding; nor does it favor any religion. Before you finish reading, you can't help thinking about your own life-Albom's whole point, of course. Morrie fans will want to read this first novel, and readers daring to examine their own lives may enjoy as well. For all public libraries.-Mary K. Bird-Guilliams, Wichita P.L., KS (c) Copyright 2010.

“FOR ONE MORE DAY” by Mitch Albom, published 2006

This is the story of Charley, a child of divorce who is always forced to choose between his mother and his father. He grows into a man and starts a family of his own. But one fateful weekend, he leaves his mother to secretly be with his father--and she dies while he is gone. This haunts him for years. It unravels his own young family. It leads him to depression and drunkenness. One night, he decides to take his life. But somewhere between this world and the next, he encounters his mother again, in their hometown, and gets to spend one last day with her--the day he missed and always wished he'd had. He asks the questions many of us yearn to ask, the questions we never ask while our parents are alive. By the end of this magical day, Charley discovers how little he really knew about his mother, the secret of how her love saved their family, and how deeply he wants the second chance to save his own.

“HAVE A LITTLE FAITH: A True Story” by Mitch Albom, published 2009

When an eighty-two-year-old rabbi from Albom's old hometown asks him to deliver his eulogy, Albom goes back to his nonfiction roots and becomes involved with a Detroit pastor--a reformed drug dealer and convict--who preaches to the poor and homeless in a decaying church with a hole in its roof. A timely, moving, and inspiring look at faith: not just who believes, but why.

What if our beliefs were not what divided us, but what pulled us together In Have a Little Faith, Mitch Albom offers a beautifully written story of a remarkable eight-year journey between two worlds--two men, two faiths, two communities--that will inspire readers everywhere. Albom's first nonfiction book since Tuesdays with Morrie, Have a Little Faith begins with an unusual request: an eighty-two-year-old rabbi from Albom's old hometown asks him to deliver his eulogy. Feeling unworthy, Albom insists on understanding the man better, which throws him back into a world of faith he'd left years ago. Meanwhile, closer to his current home, Albom becomes involved with a Detroit pastor--a reformed drug dealer and convict--who preaches to the poor and homeless in a decaying church with a hole in its roof. Moving between their worlds, Christian and Jewish, African-American and white, impoverished and well-to-do, Albom observes how these very different men employ faith similarly in fighting for survival: the older, suburban rabbi embracing it as death approaches; the younger, inner-city pastor relying on it to keep himself and his church afloat. As America struggles with hard times and people turn more to their beliefs, Albom and the two men of God explore issues that perplex modern man: how to endure when difficult things happen; what heaven is; intermarriage; forgiveness; doubting God; and the importance of faith in trying times. Although the texts, prayers, and histories are different, Albom begins to recognize a striking unity between the two worlds--and indeed, between beliefs everywhere. In the end, as the rabbi nears death and a harsh winter threatens the pastor's wobbly church, Albom sadly fulfills the rabbi's last request and writes the eulogy. And he finally understands what both men had been teaching all along: the profound comfort of believing in something bigger than yourself. Have a Little Faith is a book about a life's purpose; about losing belief and finding it again; about the divine spark inside us all. It is one man's journey, but it is everyone's story. Ten percent of the profits from this book will go to charity, including The Hole In The Roof Foundation, which helps refurbish places of worship that aid the homeless.


  1. YEAH FOR BOOK CLUB THINGS!!!! Anyways, I really like Mitch Albom and he has some great books that are so tiny and that is why I chose these books. You didn't have to read all of them, yet you get a sense of his writing.
    My FAVORITE book of his is THE FIVE PEOPLE YOU MEET IN HEAVEN. It is an easy read (thankful for this short month of February) so you don't have to put a lot of effort into the book. And if all else fails, he has a movie for this book as well. Usually the movies are NOT good. However, I really like how this movie was almost perfectly matched to the book. Mom already gave a bit of a summary about it, so I won't dive into that. But in this book, while going and meeting the five people in Heaven, Eddie is mainly worried about the cause of his death, saving a little girl or not. He keeps thinking back to that moment of feeling a little girls hands and whether he had saved her. It’s not until the last chapter that we find out what happened to Eddie and the little girl he had either managed to save or not. He is speaking now with the fifth person, Tala, and again Eddie asks if he had managed to “pull her out of the way”. Tala says that he didn’t pull her. He pushed her. He says he couldn’t remember because he felt her hands. At this point Tala says that it was not the little girls hands, but hers. She was bringing him to heaven to keep him safe.
    Such a cute story, in my opinion! It is a short book, you could’ve chosen from any, since they are ALL short. The other stories are good as well. In my opinion, not as eye catching though I have all of them. So if any of you sisters need a good short read, I would choose this book.

    1. thank you for your thoughts. mce

  2. I read "The Five People You Meet in Heaven". It was an interesting concept of heaven. I liked that Eddie's five had already gone through the process. They had met their five people, let go of the hurt and worries, gained understanding and peace. It is easier to go through the process of letting go and moving on when one is counseled with someone who is at peace with themselves...who doesn't drag their own baggage into the process. I appreciated that standpoint.

    I also liked the scene with Eddie's father at the diner. Ruby says, "Holding anger is a poison. It eats you from inside. We think that hating is a weapon that attacks the person who harmed us. But hatred is a curved blade. And the harm we do, we do to ourselves." That is such a true statement! I've seen this so many times. People wait on others to repent, to say their sorry, to offer an explanation. They wait and wait and hang on to their hurt and anger. But that will not compel the other person to make amends. Often they don't know, or don't care. Holding on to the hurt or anger only hurts you. You have to let it go or it will eat you up.

    I also like the message of the book that doing the simple, mundane things of life really does make a difference. I think many of us have times when we feel like George on "It's a Wonderful Life". We don't see any of the good we've done, only the negative things and the missed opportunities. BUT all the small things we do each day add up to a lot.

    Overall, it was a nice book to read.

    1. this is true. it was a thought-provoking book. small but powerful. mce