Saturday, November 23, 2013

The First Phone Call From Heaven, by Mitch Albom ~ book review

* I was provided a copy of this book from TLC Book Tours. All expressed opinions are strictly my own. I was not compensated for posting this review. *

reading, amreading, fiction, book review, books

So. Here we have it. The First Phone Call From Heaven. 

This book arrived in my mailbox on October 11th. 

My husband and I had just loaded the car, ready to head to New York. I ran to the mailbox since I knew that there would be stuff in there and we'd be away for a bit. 

I got into the back of the car, next to my daughter, the two of us wiping tears from our eyes. We were headed to New York because my dad had passed away earlier that afternoon. 

I pulled the book out of the packaging, raised it up to my husband in the rearview mirror and said, "REALLY?"... 

So. Here we have it. The First Phone Call From Heaven.

I don't know each of you individually. I don't know every one of my readers super well. I don't even know every single one of my incredibly supportive blogging friends super well. But I do know myself. And I do know that when this book was in my hand at that moment? I looked up, rolled my eyes, and decided I was not even remotely ready. 

But I also kind of tossed out a 'Thanks, Dad,' and moved along. 

Mitch Albom is no stranger to incredible writing. I've been a fan of his books since Tuesdays With Morrie. Have you read that one? If not, get thee to the library or bookstore, stat! Seriously. STAT. 

I've also read The Five People You Meet in Heaven, so I was no stranger to the power of his words. Obviously when I requested to be on this tour I had no idea how much it would mean to me. How even more powerful the sentiment would be. How close to my own grief and pain. 

Albom takes us to the town of Coldwater, where several people have started receiving actual phone calls from their deceased loved ones. Phone calls, happening only on Fridays, where they answer and the voice they hear is one they haven't heard in quite some time. Months. Years. Time lapses that they could tell you by the pain and grief and loss in their hearts. 

But the voices. 

The calls. 

Tess heard from her mother. Katherine from her sister. Jack and Doreen from their son, Robbie. 

There were more, but these are the ones that stand out throughout the story. 

Skeptics. Believers. Protesters. Prayers. 

We start our story meeting Sully, a newly released prisoner who nearly lost his life in a plane crash determined to be his fault. We know Sully's wife Giselle has died, and his young son has hopes of hearing from her. We know Sully was a military man. A pilot. 

His story unravels before us as we make our way through the book, Coldwater and stick with him as he returns home. 

Sully doesn't believe. He wants to protect his son. More than ANYthing he wants to protect his son. Slips of information, a toy phone. Jules isn't meant to hear any of this. Not meant to be misled. He, WE, don't want the boy to believe his momma is going to call him. We don't yet know what's true and what's not. We know we want to protect a small child, and we respect his father's desire to do so, too. 

Connections are made. Katherine becomes close to Amy, a news reporter looking to make a name for herself with this story. Jack and Tess, they find their way to one another. (Doreen is his ex-wife, for those of you who were following along really well this far!) Sully meets Liz at the library and her connection to his son is just what the boy needs. 

Do you believe? Would you accept what these people were claiming? Or would you question it? Would you WANT to accept it, want to experience it for yourself? Would you doubt? Or ignore? 

It's impossible to know, I think. I know I'd love to hear my dad's voice again. As in RIGHT NOW. Immediately. But would I want a phone call? Would I believe it? 

Hell, yes, I'd want a call. But would I believe it? I just don't know. 

As for what happens in Coldwater, I'm going to suggest you grab yourself a copy of this book to find out. It's an easy but powerful read. I think it's worth it. Let me know what you think. 

* I've received a copy of this book to facilitate my review from TLC Book Tours. I was not compensated for this post and all expressed opinions are my own. You'll find an affiliate link in this post.  


  1. Hmmm... I don't know what I'd believe. Though I've always heard such wonderful things about M.A.'s books, I've yet to pick one up. Perhaps I should?

    Great review!

  2. Awww, I wish you would get that phone call. (((hugs)))

  3. I don't know if I would believe or not. But I do know that this author's books have made me look at the world just a little bit differently, and that's a powerful thing.

    Thanks for being on the tour!

  4. Oh my goodness, you receiving that book was definitely fate. Thinking of you my friend xoxo

  5. Oh my goodness, you receiving that book was definitely fate. Thinking of you my friend xoxo

  6. What an interesting read. First off sorry for your loss of your Daddy. It's never easy losing a parent regardless of the reason.
    Secondly, I haven't read this particular book of Mitch's yet, but it is now definitely on my to read list. I'm a fan of his, but I haven't had much time to keep up with what my favorite authors are doing lately.
    Thank you for the detailed review.


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