The Dalai Lama’s Cat

by David Michie (Hay House) ISBN 978-1-78180-056-0


Author David Michie introduces his readers to Tibetan Buddhism through non-fiction books and thrillers. The way he explains the basic concepts of the religion in his latest novelThe Dalai Lama’s Cat reminded me of The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff.


The main character is a scraggly kitten saved by the Dalai Lama from an uncertain fate. She becomes a part of his household in Dharamsala and grows into a beautiful Himalayan, worthy of her various names including His Holiness’s Cat (HHC), Rinpoche and Snow Lion. 


The cat describes her daily life in the temple complex and the surrounding community in which the colourful characters are all impacted by the wisdom of the Dalai Lama. Not only the monks but also the passionate Italian cook and the narcissistic owner of the Café Franc gain insight and change, carefully observed by HHC. She is also witness to the conversations between the Dalai Lama and his, often high profile, visitors.  She becomes familiar with the Buddhist teachings on mindfulness, meditation, love and compassion. 


HHC applies the lessons herself and loses a bad habit, and some weight, becomes a better meditator and overcomes fear on her way to romantic love.

This is a delightful book for cat lovers with an interest in the Dalai Lama’s teachings. 


Josine Overdevest



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