Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Cat Heaven” as Want to Read:
Cat Heaven
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Cat Heaven

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  773 ratings  ·  98 reviews
A joyous celebration of a cat's journey after a happy life on Earth by Newbery Medalist Cynthia Rylant.

"The way to Cat Heaven is a field of sweet grass, where crickets and butterflies play!" With a gentle, playful rhyme, Newbery Medalist Cynthia Rylant explores all the ways our beloved cats enjoy Cat Heaven, as she did for dogs in the bestselling companion book, DOG HEAVEN
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published August 1st 1997 by Blue Sky Press (first published January 1st 1997)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Cat Heaven, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Cat Heaven

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  773 ratings  ·  98 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Cat Heaven
Feb 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
A lovely way to help explain the death of a cat. Cynthia Rylant envisions a heaven with cat toys and catnip everywhere, cats congregating on God's kitchen counter for tasty food and sleeping on his bed, being petted by angels and occasionally looking down at their former home. ...more
Apr 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
I liked CAT HEAVEN because
1. I like cats and this is a pretty book
2. I loved Sheldon
3. I hope he went to heaven
4. I like to think that he is watching and knows I loved him
5. the book says these things are possible

To all silly furbabies... like Fat Charles who sleeps in the MIDDLE of my bed...

Happy Reading.
Sarah Sammis
Oct 26, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Sarah by: The Backyardigans
Both of my children have chosen Cat Heaven by Cynthia Rylant. Harriet chose it because it has cats. Sean, I think he picked it because he recognized the author's name. Both kids though respond with "what a strange book" after I've read it to them.

Cat Heaven offers a simplistic view of what heaven would like to cats who have died. They can share the bed with God, drink milk, have catnip and all sorts of other things cats like to do.

I suppose the idea is to ease the pain for children who have lost
Sara Truog
May 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
I don't usually review pictures books in here, but I wanted to mention this one because it really helped us today. A little more "God talk" than we are used to in our house, but after the death of our beloved cat Gonzo, my kids really responded to the idea of a cat heaven and picture him there, surrounded by all of the things he most loved. I had to have Daniel read it aloud to his sister because it really broke me up. A sweet and touching book. ...more
Dec 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humane-education
In my entire adult life I have only wept over a single book. This is it.

Humane education themes include pet loss, the idea that it’s ok to grieve, and bringing pets into the fold of our religious beliefs.
Mar 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
A great book to give to anyone who has suffered the loss of their beloved cat. Helped me after the death of Skittles, my Siamese 16th birthday gift & lap kitty extraordinaire.
Christina Cox
May 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
I bought this book when our cat schmutz passed away about 8 years ago on the recommendation from my sister in law, Donna. I read it to the kids over and over again and we wrote a loving note inside to schmutz. Just yesterday our loving cat of 19 years, schwarz, passed away and the kids lovingly remembered this story and talked about schwarz and schmutz reuniting in Cat Heaven...also in the process we have written a lovely note inside to schwarz. It brings smiles to our faces to think of our kitt ...more
Jun 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Cat Heaven, is a good book, written in a sensitive manner, about what supposedly happens when a cat dies. It's a faith based story, about what the cats encounter on their way to heaven such as, sweet grass to play in, crickets and butterflies, plenty of milk and even catnip. The book talk's of God's kitchen with all of their favorite foods, looking down at their former family from heaven, and getting to sleep in God's bed. Of course the cat's are happy there, because "all cats love heaven."

The i
Dec 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Another winner from Cynthia Rylant. While I'm not crazy about the illustration style (kitty is a word my 10-month-old recognizes, but these simplistic drawings don't much look like the kitties he knows), I think everything else about the book is perfect. It captures everything that would make a place heavenly for a cat. I think it would be great for anyone who's lost a cat recently, not just for kids. One little thing I like is the various skin tones used for the angels and God: kind of a multi- ...more
Mar 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was my sister's book; she used it to keep track of all the cats we belonged to, after they crossed the Rainbow Bridge. I took over this task after she passed. Yesterday was her birthday, so I decided to add three names/poems for furbabies I lost this year, and did another skim-through. It's a children's book, but a comfort to me every time I read it, and each time I have to enter the name of a precious kitty I've recently lost. ...more
Sep 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
Here's a book I sent my niece when her cat died, but I didn't read it myself until recently when I lost my beloved furball. It is a nice change from all that rainbow bridge crap where the story makes your cat wait for your death before going to heaven by crossing the rainbow bridge with you. Here the cat goes right to heaven and has a wonderful time, just the way it should be. ...more
Jul 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reading-record
Illustrator: Cynthia Rylant
Age: any age
Summary: A story about cat heaven.
Applications/Uses: Not really necessary for a classroom, but good to have on hand if a student has lost a pet cat and needs to read something related to the death of their animal.
Themes/Connections: Pets, life after death
Awards: None
Mar 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
A lovely, comforting book for anyone who loves & has lost a sweet kitty friend.
Michele Reno
May 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
Oh, good lord. I cried like a baby when I read this.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'm crying. ...more
Oct 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: boy-i-cry
There's something wrong with this book, the first few pages were fine but after I read the part about how God lets all the cats sleep in his bed the words got very blurry and hard to read. Weird how this happens, 5 stars tho ...more
Mary Drew
Dec 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: 2 to 6 or anyone who has lost a cat
Recommended to Mary Drew by: the title - it's about cats
10) Rylant, C. (1997). Cat Heaven. New York: Blue Sky Press.
(Ages 2 – 6) I’d never heard the term “bibliotherapy” before MLIS 567, but this book fits into that category. Short, rhyming passages and bright, simple illustrations are comforting for those whose cat has recently died, and even those whose pet is still alive. It’s even comforting for me: earlier this year, my 15-year-old cat died. : (
Jul 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I was reading a bedtime story to a friend's daughter and son and ironically, this was the book on the shelf. (We currently have a cat who is terminally ill.) So I read the book and remembered how much I love Cynthia Rylant's words and illustrations. Simple yet profoundly artistic. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves cats. ...more
Nov 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
What would I do without my friend, Amy? Thank you for this gem of a book, one that made me smile and weep, both. And, the first book Michael Finn said, "AGAIN!" to, after reading it through together once.
I miss Mr. Bodie.
Jul 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
a good introduction to how much God loves us in a whimsical way, also a good way to introduce a discussion about what their impressions of heaven might be and how it might be different--and not as scary as we may have learned.
William Green
Aug 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book and actually cried near the end. This is a great selection for someone who has lost their pet to help them during the grieving process. This is definitely a story for those who have and love animals. The illustrations are very original, which children will enjoy seeing.
Jan 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As an adult, I really enjoyed this picture book. All of the pictures are so beautifully colored and the story is very imaginative. I love how "God" was never just one race and same with the angels. Also the book looks beautiful without the book jacket as well. And that's always a plus. ...more
Linda Hartlaub
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is Ms. Rylant's companion piece to Dog Heaven. Although it is classified as a children's book, it is for all ages. If you have lost a furry best friend, it will make you smile, it will make you cry. But in your heart, you'll know this is where your kitty is. ...more
Oct 09, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: cat lovers
Shelves: childrens
Given to me after the death of my cat, a long-time companion, I was charmed by the sentiment in the book.
We read this at our cat Billie's funeral (she was 17 years old when she died). ...more
Apr 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to my friend Jill for giving me this book when my cat died. It made grieving easier.
Jun 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-to-aidan
All you cat lovers will need tissues when reading this to the kiddos. I know I did.
Jun 25, 2009 rated it liked it
Very nice Western-religion based story about what happens to our beloved felines when they die. Wished I'd had it for our kids when we lost Annie and Tasha. ...more
Mar 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cats, childrens
A comforting book for anyone who has lost a beloved kitty. I adore the lively, folk art illustrations and the text is peaceful, playful and soothing.
Apr 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: death, poetic, pets
I loved this book. It gave me chills. This would be a great book for anyone who has lost a cat. It really hit home with me considering my cat died about 6 months ago.
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages
  • The Boo-Boos That Changed the World: A True Story about an Accidental Invention (Really!)
  • Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story
  • Duck, Death and the Tulip
  • Hands Up!
  • Leave Me Alone!
  • The Wall in the Middle of the Book
  • Blood Brothers
  • Mindfulness Cards: Simple Practices for Everyday Life (Daily Mindfulness, Daily Gratitude, Mindful Meditation)
  • Pokko and the Drum
  • Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls - Gift Box Set: 200 Tales of Extraordinary Women
  • Strangers
  • Lemons
  • Kitten's First Full Moon
  • Where's Waldo Now?
  • The Dictionary of Imaginary Places: The Newly Updated and Expanded Classic
  • A Big Mooncake for Little Star
  • Penguin Problems
See similar books…
An author of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry for children and young adults as well as an author and author/illustrator of picture books for children, Cynthia Rylant is recognized as a gifted writer who has contributed memorably to several genres of juvenile literature. A prolific author who often bases her works on her own background, especially on her childhood in the West Virginia mountains, she ...more

News & Interviews

Happy Women's History Month! One of the undisputedly good things about modern scholarship is that women’s history is finally getting its due....
83 likes · 11 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »