This book is so amazing that I know I cannot do it justice with this review, but I will give it a try. Regardless of your religious beliefs, this New York Times Bestseller should be on your ‘must read this summer’ list.
Six year old Alex Malarkey died in a horrific car accident in 2004. He saw five angels lift his father’s body out of the driver’s seat and lay him in the ditch beside the car. Then he went through a long, bright white tunnel. He didn’t like the music in the tunnel. But then he got to Heaven, and there was powerful music, which he loved. He saw the five angels and his Daddy in Heaven. Alex saw that his father had injuries as bad as his own, but God was healing him in Heaven and sending him back. Daddy asked God if he could trade places with Alex, but God said no. Then Alex saw his Daddy’s spirit return to his body next to the smashed car.
Alex can’t say how much time he spent in Heaven. He says that time in Heaven has no past, or future, it’s just always now. He saw one hundred and fifty pure, white angels with fantastic wings who were all calling his name. They told him to go back. He did go back, but Jesus stayed with him and held him as he watched the doctors in the emergency room work on his body. The accident left his body paralyzed, but the time spent in heaven gave him knowledge and wisdom far beyond his years.
This is a true story, written mostly by Alex’s father Kevin, but with portions written by eye witnesses, paramedics, doctors and other medical professionals who treated Alex, family members (including Alex’s mom Beth, and Kevin’s father who is a medical doctor), pastors, and others who have played a part in Alex’s life. There is also a page or two at the end of each chapter written by Alex himself, who was twelve at the time the book was published in 2010. The portions written by Alex were not edited in any way.
The Malarkey family was a typical American family, except for the fact that they had four children aged six and under! The youngest was a newborn – just home from the hospital the day before. (According to America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2010, the average household size declined to 2.59 in 2010, from 2.62 people in 2000.)
On Sunday, November 14, 2004, Kevin and Beth were trying to get everybody ready for church, “fighting the forces of chaos” (which I can completely relate to, although I only have two children). It was finally decided that Kevin would take Alex to church, while Beth would stay home with the three little ones. Little did they know that in a few short hours, their world would change, and the word “chaos” would take on a whole new meaning.
Read the rest of this review at The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven, a Book Review | Bookstove.