Wednesday, May 14, 2008

For One More Day by Mitch Albom

Tuesdays with Morrie made my favorites list last year. Out of the 50 books I read last year, 48 of them made me weep openly. Tuesdays was one of them. I read The Five People You Meet in Heaven a few years ago and had to compensate the Cincinnati Public Library for the warping that my salty tears brought to the book's pages. Albom has an amazing ability to tug at my heartstrings (located in the right ventricle). I hadn't cried in a while, and thought that it was about time. So while biding my time in Dayton's airport, due to flight cancellations and delays, I picked up For One More Day.

Although this books strikes the same tenor as Albom's other works, I would imagine that it is entirely fictional, unlike Tuesdays. (Frankly, I don't care enough to find out if this story is based on true events.) The book is about Charles "Chick" Benetto, a former professional baseball player who actually got to play in a world series. However, he never really became a successful baseball player. His life begins to spiral out of control and one night, at a low point, Chick decides to take his own life. Thoroughly drunk, he heads to his home town to bring his suffering to an end. But when Chick arrives at his childhood home, he is greeted by his mother, who has been dead for ten years.

The title really sums up the plot of the book. Chick gets one more day with his mother, a day during which he ponders his life and rethinks some of the choices he has made. The story of Chick's extra day is broken up by flashbacks from his life and poignant interstitials entitled "Times I Did Not Stand Up for My Mother" and "Times My Mother Stood Up for Me". This book was quite a bit clunkier than Tuesdays, it was rather ham-fisted in a couple places, and the plot was really simple. Regardless of its shortcomings, about halfway through this book I gave my mom a call, in the spirit of Stevie Wonder's 1984 hit.


Christopher said...

Honestly, all the articles I have ever read from Albom made me cringe. Either he praises pap like The Bucket List over serious films like There Will Be Blood, or, if I recall from the 2002 Stanley Cup finals, being a huge cock about my hometown. And the plots of these books don't make me want to change my mind.

No offense to you, of course.

Christopher said...

ignore previous grammar mistakes, please

Carlton said...

Admittedly, they are incredibly simple.
ps. I was editing this post when you left your comment. I didn't really like this book that much.

Christopher said...

After posting that I went around the internet to try to find the 2002 article that made me hate him so much but I couldn't find it. It was basically a collection of really tired Southern stereotypes.

I don't think sportswriters in general are apt to write other things, unless they're George Plimpton.