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The Next Place

4.49  ·  Rating details ·  660 ratings  ·  112 reviews
A classic, The Next Place brings gentle verse revealing a safe and welcome destination free from earthly hurts and filled with wonder and peace. A comforting message of hope and a gift of compassion for the bereaved. Exquisite, color illustrations.
Hardcover, 36 pages
Published August 5th 2002 by Waldman House Press (first published September 1997)
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Average rating 4.49  · 
Rating details
 ·  660 ratings  ·  112 reviews

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The chaplain at the hospital told John and me about this book. You see, he'd given her permission to read some of what he'd written down for me, to be read after he died, and something in what he wrote made her think of this book. I ordered it immediately. As soon as it arrived, we got in the habit of me reading it aloud to him at night before bed. Except, he fell asleep before I could read it that last night. So, in the morning when I woke to find him gone, I read it to him then.

I have continue
Dec 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This is a great picture book which i interpret as being about life after death. Or if not life, then the thing that is after death but is not life (as we know it). I am going to read it at my Gran's funeral. ...more
Marissa Elera
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a truly stunning work and the best children's book explaining the afterlife that I have ever read. Suitable for families with a variety of beliefs. ...more
Dec 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
We all die. So why do so many work so hard not to talk about it? This absolutely beautiful illustrated book tackles what happens after death in a lovely comforting beautiful way. I found, as an adult, it was just what I needed during a difficult time to put into perspective how we are all connected to one another. It makes this book equally a good gift for an adult who has lost someone, as it is as a tool to talk about death with a child.

Different groups will not like this book for different rea
Meg Blasi
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As an athiest, I loved this book. It was given to us by the Donate Life organization after my dad passed away. I read it out loud to my infant son and sobbed my eyes out, it was extremely therapeutic.
Mekiah Johnson
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
I liked this book. I thought it was good.
I liked its portrayal of Heaven.
I liked how it made you sit on something for a while, and after its sinked in you got it. It wasn't like most picture books, where it's just simple and flat out there. There are things hidden in-between the lines, and I love it!
Not to mention the book itself is beautiful! Awesome designs!
Although I wish the pages did have some full-on illustrations, I also think that the simplistic illustrations already shown do match t
Jan 10, 2022 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This seems to be a picture book about life after death for the "spiritual, but not religious" set. It will annoy the religious with its failure to mention god or heaven, and it will probably not please atheists because it insinuates a consciousness after death.

The illustrations are lovely, and I'm in the hopeful agnostic/reluctant atheist camp, so it didn't really do a whole lot for me, but the idea is nice, if not convincing.
ashley seng
Mar 07, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Just need to share how beautiful this book is. I read it to my patients and families often. Today, I was touched when a patient I had shared the book with months ago told me he purchased his own copy because of how much he enjoyed it. We read it together again and I was reminded of how comforting and beautiful it is. I recommend to any and all, and I am forever thankful to a former mentor for sharing this with me!
Kristy Daniels
Sep 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
All these good things will go with me. They will make my spirit glow. And that light will shine forever in the next place I go.” My sister in law sent me this beautifully written and illustrated book to help ease the pain in my heart. It’s full of hopeful statements 🌈and light 🌟.
Feb 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED THIS BOOK! It’s full of mystery without being specifically religious. We dream of death not being the end - and The Next Place shares this hope.
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It was very emotional book for my me ,my daughter and granddaughter. I lost my mom on April 3rd. This book is very inspirational and clear about what happens to a person after the body is no longer able to hold ones spirit.
May 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What a beautiful poem about traveling to Heaven. Simply put "The body I once lived in won't be part of me at all. I will finally be perfect. I will be without a flaw. I will never make one more mistake, or break the smallest law. And the me that was impatient, or was angry or unkind, will simply be a memory. The me I left behind. I will travel empty-handed. There is not a single thing I have collected in my life that I would ever want to bring except... the love of those who loved me, and the wa ...more
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: poetry
The illustrations are lovely.

Personally, I wished it would have been more direct as to the "why" of things - why do we go to this place, why is there no more pain, etc. The answer: Jesus. I do not know the beliefs of the author, so I am not sure what his intentions were. As a Christian, I found myself disappointed that the book makes no mention of Jesus and His gift of everlasting life.
May 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
A beautifully written and illustrated book for all ages. It gave me a sense of peace after the loss of a loved one.
Rogue-van (the Bookman)
Oct 29, 2021 rated it did not like it
Shelves: rvo-reviewed, fic
FALSE HOPE. It is sad that such a beautiful dream by Warren Hanson has been accepted by some reviewers as a true depiction of the afterlife. There is no evidence given by the author to support that theory. He cites no Bible verses, holy books, or religious scholars.
Is it good poetry? Yes. I wish that I could write such lovely lines as: "I'll glide beyond the rainbows. I'll drift above the sky. I'll fly into the wonder, without ever wondering why." But is it factual? No. And those who accept it
Biz (Marie) Thomas
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I don’t remember when I first read this book. I brought it home in grade school (first or second grade) from a book fair. I love the illustrations and I had always loved poetry to this day. You could say it’s not a poem, but I believe it is. My mom at first thought why am I letting my child reading this book, but then she loved it so much that she’s bought so many copies to give to people no matter what age. I read it whenever I’m sad... whenever I lose someone or even when I’m grieving. I’d say ...more
Cara Byrne
Jan 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
"The next place that I go will be as peaceful and familiar as a sleepy summer Sunday and a sweet, untroubled mind [...] I will not be a boy or girl, a woman or a man. I'll simply be just, simply, me. No worse or better than [...] I will finally be perfect. I will be without a flaw. I will never make one more mistake, or break the smallest law."

I've been searching for picture books about death for years as my daughter has been asking questions about life and death since she was three years old. W
Amanda Vander hyde
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book reads almost as a poem or invocation, and examines what life after death might be like. It is a good book for children to read because of the beautiful language that they can decipher and use in their own writing, allowing for more exposure. It is also just a remarkably beautiful book, even though it may have religious undertones that are not practical for today's day and age in the classroom. However, it does help discuss the topic of death, especially with those who are afraid of wha ...more
Patricia Stinson
May 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
In these days of Covid-19 many people are grieving over the loss of a loved one. This book is for them. It is for adults and more importantly for children who may be grieving over the loss of a grandparent. It is written by Warren Hanson. It is an "...inspirational journey of light and hope to a place where earthly hurts are left behind." The author is the illustrator. The illustrations are beautiful. He also illustrated A Cup Of Christmas Tea and Peef the Christmas Bear. Mr. Hanson and his wife ...more
Feb 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book came to me at a time I needed it most... after my cousin's suicide. It was a purely accidental find, and the moment I opened it I felt that it had been written for me. Something I was meant to stumble upon. Since then I've recommended it to a number of others struggling with finding beauty in the dark times. ...more
Jan 14, 2022 rated it really liked it
A beautifully illustrated children's book accompanies the author's reflective and hopeful poem on the afterlife.

My friend Chris received it as a sympathy gift for her children years ago when their family suffered a tragic loss. It provided comfort for all of them, and she's been gifting copies as needed ever since.

Lisa Case
Feb 20, 2022 rated it it was amazing
A good friend passed away at too young of an age. A day and a half later, an elderly uncle passed. His wife, a former school teacher, read this book to me. She said it’s brought her comfort throughout the years. I’ve read it few times since and am going to gift it to the family of my good friend.
It’s comforting, peaceful and sad all at once.
Feb 25, 2022 rated it it was amazing
This is indeed a wonderful book to explain what happens after death…or what we hope to have happen to our souls after we leave our bodies, especially those with earthly “imperfections”.
I would recommend this gentle read to anyone who is struggling with the loss of a loved one, but it is great to help children ease their uncertainty with what happens after someone dies.
Sep 27, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books-e
The artwork was really pretty, and the text wasn't bad, but I feel it was just average over all. I think some of the text is a bit beyond kids content/meaning wise.
Not one I would immediately recommend.
Kate's Reads
May 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book to give to children and even adults when someone they love has died. It is truly beautiful. I will read it over and over again.
Kalen Clark
Sep 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great for ANYone looking for some comfort surrounding what happens after it all happens.
Ending Well
Feb 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-books
A comforting exploration of “the next place” without dogma or religious overtones.
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written and illustrated picture book dealing with the death of a loved one!
Rona Shirdan
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is a wonderfully inspirational book!
Gerald Sessions
Apr 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing

My wife and I received this book as a gift after the death of her mother. The book is wonderfully written and illustrated. A poem that is written as a part of the illustration almost musical.
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