Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo

Tuesday, August 09, 2011 AnnMarie Brown 2 Comments

I am really finding this review difficult to write. Why you may ask? After reading this book I had to sit back and think and reflect back on the book and what I really truly thought of it.

What do I believe and what do I say about this book?


This book is intended as a true account of a boy who visited heaven, as told by his father and a co-writer, Lynn Vincent.

Colton Burpo, the three-year-old son of Todd (the author) and Sonja Burpo, spent time in heaven and came back to talk about it. Colton’s experience was not the traditional near death experience since he never actually died. The first half of the book is the story of the events leading up to Colton’s visit to heaven. His dad, Todd, a Wesleyan minister, gives the nail biting story of dealing with his son’s stomach ache that was misdiagnosed as the flu. After many days of pain, trips to the doctor’s office, and multiple hospitals, they finally find out that Colton has a ruptured appendix that has been poisoning his body for days. At the edge of death, the doctors rush him into surgery while the parents are on their knees before God.

Colton survived. The medical reports give no indication that his heart ever stopped. While it was a very close call, the surgery was a success.

Over the next months, even years, Colton began, to the surprise of the parents, to explain what happened to him while in surgery. The rest of the book is filled with account after account of Colton telling his bewildered parents about his time with Christ in heaven. Things that Colton should not have known and had never been taught came to the surface as this three-year-old boy processed his faith as confirmed through his time with God.

I would rather that the father had been the only author, as since this is to be a true account, it is a crucial point to this book's integrity. As there is a co-author, it's hard to tell if she "spiced things up". The work itself is fairly well written, and keeps your attention.

The book is well-written and reads quite easily. I don't want to doubt the tales of little Colton Burpo because, quite frankly, we all want to know more about Heaven. I also do believe that God uses children to speak to adults.

I would recommend this book, but would say that everyone should decide for themselves how they feel about it. I have thought about it off and on for days, and am still not quite sure how I feel!


  1. Well I really wanted to review this one too. It escaped me somehow. It still sounds interesting.