This is NOT a Babu Babu baby book.  This is just a regular post about a book I wanted to discuss.

I had seen this book a lot everywhere in Japan.  (By everywhere, I mean libraries and bookstores and schools.)  But since it is not a western book, I wasn’t familiar with it.

My online pal Sue mentioned it, and so that caused me to borrow it from the library to borrow it and read it in Japanese.


The story is about a cat that lives with a person, over and over and over.  A different person each time.  The cat feels nothing for these people.   But finally he falls in love with a white cat.  When she dies, he is devastated.

I found this book very difficult.  It has its roots in Buddhism, which I did not realize….but probably should have been able to figure out.   In hindsight, it is really obvious.  However, I was approaching the book as a “little kiddy book” and was not expecting anything more.

My son’s class recently had “Parents’ Observation Day.”  I went in to observe his language lesson.  (Japanese class here is called Kokugo:  “Language.”  Remember, it’s not a foreign language for these kids!)

The topic of the lesson was this book, The Cat Who Lived a Million Times.   I was really surprised.   Yes, I am into books big time….but like most people, I think of picture books as being for little kiddies. (Even though I should know better.)   Not this book, apparently.   It’s got a lot of deep thoughts that I can’t delve into here because I am not expert enough.

So think of this book as like the Japanese version of The Little Prince.  On its face, it appears to be for young kids.  But in reality, it is for all ages and has a lot of symbolism.  Heavy thinking required!

In Japanese, it can be found here.

In English, it can be found here.  (It is out of print.)