The main problem in this book is that Eddie hates his job as a maintenance worker at an amusement park. Eddie has a handicap that prevents him from doing other kinds of work. He feels that his life is meaningless and that his job is not an important one. When Eddie finally has the chance to do something really important, he dies without knowing whether or not he succeeded. Eddie hopes that someone in heaven will know the answer.
I learned that your actions can sometimes effect other people. I also learned that you do not always know the consequences of your actions.
Eddie dies while trying to save a little girl from a collapsing ride at Ruby Pier Amusement Park. When he dies, he goes to heaven and meets five people who explain the events of his life. Some of these people he knows very well, but some he has never met at all.
The first person he meets is a man who died of a heart attack after swerving his car to avoid hitting Eddie. This was a man who Eddie always thought of as a freak. The second person is Eddie’s commanding officer in the war. When they escaped the camp where they were being held as prisoners of war, they decided to burn down the entire village. Eddie realized that there was a child inside the building and his captain shot him in the leg to prevent him from running in after her. Eddie learns that his commanding officer was the person responsible for his limp. The third person that Eddie meets is Ruby, the woman who the amusement park was named after. She wants to tell Eddie why his father died. The fourth person Eddie meets is his wife. She wants to tell him that she understands why everything happened in their marriage and that she knew how much he loved her. The fifth person he meets is the little girl who died in the fire he set in Vietnam.
All of these people teach Eddie something about his life, and Eddie finally realizes why things happened they way they did. Eddie learns that his time on earth was important.