Albom — best known for writing the international best-selling Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life's Greatest Lesson – is actively promoting his new novel with a book tour that includes stops at two Jewish Community Centers and a synagogue.
The Time Keeper is Albom's "most imaginative novel yet," according to Amazon.com, in a review that describes the book as a "compelling fable about the first man on earth to count the hours. The man who became Father Time."
According to Albom's Facebook page, his Time Keeper tour includes events at: Sinai Temple in Los Angeles on Thursday, September 20, the United Jewish Community of the Virginia Peninsula in Newport News, Virginia on October 6, and the Mayerson JCC in Cincinnati, Ohio on October 21.
I met Albom several years ago at a speaking engagement and book signing for Have A Little Faith at a synagogue here in Columbus in April 2010, and found him to be a generous in person signer.
There were more than 500 people at the event, and I'd bet 300+ were in line to meet Mitch after his speech. Albom chatted with attendees, inscribed and autographed every book he was handed (I'm proud to have all of his non-sports books in my collection of signed books), and posed for pictures.
Albom no longer responds to fan mail, according to his web site. "With tens of millions of copies of my books sold worldwide," the site says, "accepting and sending out mail isn’t logistically possible for security and staff concerns."
Prior to the posted policy being put in place, Albom signed my copy of Tuesdays With Morrie in response to a through-the-mail request that I sent to his office at the Detroit Free Press in 2001. I was pleasantly surprised to receive the book, considering my request was made during the height of the Morrie craze.
My signed copy of Morrie is, unfortunately, not a first edition. Morrie had a first edition printing of just 20,000 copies, before exploding in popularity. True first editions, therefore, are rare, highly collectible and expensive. ABEbooks.com sells autographed firsts for as much as $500 to $800 or more. Nevertheless, I am thrilled to have it in my collection!
In addition to Morrie and The Time Keeper, Albom is the author of The Five People You Meet in Heaven, For One More Day, and Have a Little Faith: A True Story, which recounts Albom's relationship with Rabbi Albert L. Lewis, who asked Albom to write his eulogy.
Prior to his fame from Morrie and his other novels, however, Albom was best known as a sports journalist.
Albom's sports books Bo: Life, Laughs, and Lessons of a College
Football Legend (an autobiography of
football coach Bo Schembechler co-written with the coach) and The Fab Five: Basketball Trash Talk the American Dream (a profile of the 1992/1993 University of Michigan men's basketball teams) were both New York Times best sellers.
Fans of Albom's sports columns can read several anthologies, including Live Albom: The Best of Detroit Free Press Sports Columnist Mitch Albom , Live Albom II , Live Albom III: Gone to the Dogs , and Live Albom 4.
Are you planning to attend any of Albom's upcoming events? Have you met Mitch Albom before? Do you have any of his sports (or other) books in your collection? Share your thoughts and photos in the comments below.