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The novel flashes back to Eddie’s birth in a poor hospital in the 1920s. Eddie’s father is smoking cigarettes in a waiting room when a nurse comes out and calls his name. Eddie’s father shows little emption, until the nurse points to baby Eddie through a glass window—and then his father smiles, because the baby is “his.”
Though Eddie has died, the novel’s narrative of his life has just begin—a metaphor for the idea that heaven is another beginning. By placing the story of Eddie’s birth right after his death, Albom again highlights the close relationship between birth and death.