Mitch Albom in Manila

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I was 15 when I read “Tuesdays with Morrie. My Literature teacher in senior year high school (hello, Mrs. P!) had raved about the book, and most of us picked up a copy¬† upon her recommendation. I had not read any of Mitch Albom’s books since “The Five People You Meet in Heaven,” though,¬† so before my scheduled interview with him, I found myself reaching for his latest novel, “The First Phone Call From Heaven” (which I gifted to my mom on her last birthday) over breakfast and finished well before lunchtime.

In “The First Phone Call From Heaven,” the (fictional) small town of Coldwater, Michigan is put on the map by a series of baffling phone calls to several of the town’s residents, all from the deceased, calling from heaven. After serving a prison sentence, Sully Harding returns to Coldwater and is skeptical about the recent turn of events. Sully is determined to find the truth about the phone calls, and in the process finds more than he sets out to uncover.

I must say the novel evoked a sense of nostalgia — it’s been years since I last read an inspirational book, and Mitch Albom’s quality of writing is still as I remember it: clear, clean prose with that trademark emotional tug that has been popular with a wide range of readers all across the world.The mystery component is also a pleasant surprise, as well as the fascinating anecdotes about the history of the telephone and how it has changed human life.

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Odds and Ends

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I love books and everything to do with them — bookmarks, book plates, reading implements, book-related toys and accessories and other bookish ephemera.

I’ve amassed a veritable loot over the holidays, thanks to some very thoughtful people.

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