The best books about heaven

2 authors have picked their favorite books about heaven and why they recommend each book.

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The Great Divorce

By C.S. Lewis,

Book cover of The Great Divorce

This is my favorite book of all time and permanently changed the way I look at life. While the story is focused on the idea of heaven and hell, you don’t have to believe in either to benefit from the perspective shift this book offers. It’s deep and powerful.

Lewis uses a story about a man traveling from hell to heaven to point out the ways us humans tend to keep ourselves bound to misery. It’s an important read for anyone wanting to overcome pessimism or who feels like joy is constantly escaping them. As Lewis says, “All that are in hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it.”


Who am I?

Some people are terrified of change, but I crave the new scenery, experiences, and interactions. However, that doesn’t mean it isn’t scary to take that leap into the unknown. In my experience, making the effort to change the parts of my life that weren’t working has led to so much personal growth and satisfaction. When I moved far away from my hometown at 22, I had no idea that it would help me overcome so many long-held fears and embolden me to become a full-time traveler, writer, and business owner. But it’s all about taking that first step and being open to letting the journey change your perspective.


I wrote...

Moving Away: The Emotional Side of Leaving

By Brooke Baum,

Book cover of Moving Away: The Emotional Side of Leaving

What is my book about?

Leaving for a new home is an exciting and emotional time. If you find it challenging to manage the rollercoaster of emotions that come with moving away from loved ones, you aren't alone. In this book, you will get honest insights into the joys and struggles of leaving for a new home.

Moving Away will inspire you to chase your dreams while encouraging you to still be realistic about some of the obstacles that will likely come your way with such a big life change.

Birds of Heaven

By Ben Okri,

Book cover of Birds of Heaven

Birds of Heaven is a tiny book full of noble thoughts on why stories and storytelling are integral to our humanity. Okri, the Man Booker Prize author of ‘The Famished Road’, eloquently states ‘The universe began as a story… we are part human, part stories.’

The text contains two inspirational essays on the meaning of language and its power to shape our lives. The work presents an alternative spiritual response to the problems of the present day. It is bursting with beautiful and insightful gems.


Who am I?

My name is Susan Perrow. I am an Australian whose ‘work’ passion is stories and storytelling. I am an author, storyteller, teacher trainer, and parent educator. For the last 30 years, I have been documenting stories from other cultures, writing stories, and telling stories to groups of children and adults – all this woven in with a career in teaching, lecturing, and consulting in Australia, Africa, Asia, China, Europe, and North America. I currently have four published story collections, in a total of 14 languages. Three of my collections are Healing Stories for Challenging Behaviour, An A-Z Collection of Behaviour Tales, and Stories to Light the Night: A Grief and Loss Collection for Children, Families and Communities.

I have chosen my fourth collection to introduce to you below.

I wrote...

Therapeutic Storytelling: 101 Healing Stories for Children

By Susan Perrow,

Book cover of Therapeutic Storytelling: 101 Healing Stories for Children

What is my book about?

Working with imaginative journeys and the subtle power of metaphor, Susan has developed the art of therapeutic storytelling for challenging behaviour and difficult situations. She encourages us to adopt the premise that ‘stories know the way’. She offers a tried and tested method for creating a unique story to help resolve issues, build emotional resilience and character, and nurture positive values. The 101 examples of therapeutic stories include many for children’s behavioural challenges as well as some for community and global issues, for all ages. The book also provides motivational thoughts and tips for creating your own stories developed from Susan’s work in practice, in many cultures and many countries.

90 Minutes in Heaven

By Don Piper, Cecil Murphey,

Book cover of 90 Minutes in Heaven: A True Story of Death & Life

This book spent five years on the New York Times bestseller list. Despite what some see as controversial claims that the author spent ninety minutes in heaven and then came back to life, only five of the eighteen chapters dwell on Piper’s “near-death experience.” The majority of the book chronicles his horrifically painful struggle to survive and then recover the use of his legs which were mangled in an accident. He often begged God to let him die. Instead, God brought people into his life to help him move past self-pity and find a renewed purpose.

Who am I?

Having practically grown up at the hospital where my dad worked as a medical photographer, I wanted to be a nurse from the age of ten. I worked in ICU for five years and then retired to become a stay-at-home mom and later a homeschool mother. But once a nurse, always a nurse. I continued to care for friends and family, including my one-hundred-year-old mother-in-law, through health crises and long-term illnesses. My book and the others listed here tell stories of God’s healing—physically, mentally, and spiritually—a theme I’m passionate about and hope you are, too!


I wrote...

Health, Healing, and Wholeness: Devotions of Hope in the Midst of Illness

By Tracy Crump,

Book cover of Health, Healing, and Wholeness: Devotions of Hope in the Midst of Illness

What is my book about?

Are you facing a health crisis or battling chronic illness? Do you need a dose of hope? Through her work as an intensive care nurse, Tracy Crump witnessed lifesaving miracles when everyone involved had given up—everyone except God.

Crafted with unique examples of God's miraculous power and saving grace, Health, Healing, and Wholeness blends Scripture-rich meditations with biblical principles highlighting God's mercy in times of medical need. Moving stories of a mother's sacrifice, children overcoming catastrophic accidents, and joy despite traumatic brain injury instill hope. Whether you are experiencing a medical crisis, walking alongside someone who is, or caring for a loved one, these thirty devotions will bring comfort and peace.

The Gates of Heaven

By Curt Benjamin,

Book cover of The Gates of Heaven

The Gates of Heaven is book three of Seven Brothers, a four-book series, in which the presence and role of the gods become more and more apparent as the overarching story unfolds. Llesho’s story starts off as what you might expect of a young prince in exile, sold into slavery as a pearl-diver, who escapes and sets out to find his scattered brothers. It doesn’t end up where you think, and this book is the point in the series where the story of gods and goddesses and dragons involved in human affairs really takes over as the main plotline, though the threads of it have been there from start. Mountains, grasslands, ancient cities, and their trade routes—this is an excellent silk road fantasy as well.


Who am I?

I’m a Canadian writer with a degree in Mediaeval Studies. Even as a child, I wrote stories about characters who weren’t entirely human; they were also always people lurking on the edges of things—families, cultures, places, ways of being, even people existing only on the edges of becoming themselves. Those have always been where I found my stories and as an adult I haven’t lost this fascination and the need to tell such tales. Gods, assassins, devils, demons, shapeshifters, immortal wanderers, and ordinary people caught up in their history, vast, deep worlds, and complex charactersthat’s what I do. 


I wrote...

Blackdog

By K.V. Johansen,

Book cover of Blackdog

What is my book about?

In a land where gods walk on the hills and goddesses rise from river, lake, and spring, the caravan-guard Holla-Sayan, escaping the bloody conquest of a lakeside town, stops to help an abandoned child and a dying dog. The girl, though, is the incarnation of Attalissa, goddess of Lissavakail, and the dog a shape-changing guardian spirit whose origins have been forgotten. Possessed and nearly driven mad by the Blackdog, Holla-Sayan flees to the desert road, taking the powerless avatar with him.

Necromancy, treachery, massacres, rebellions, and gods dead, lost, or mad follow hard on their heels. But it is Attalissa herself who may be the Blackdog's—and Holla-Sayan's—doom. Blackdog begins the epic five-book silk road fantasy series Gods of the Caravan Road.

War in Heaven

By Charles Williams,

Book cover of War in Heaven

Charles Williams’s books have been described as “supernatural thrillers.” Many later authors have tried to use the theme of a recently-rediscovered ancient holy relic, which various people want to get hold of for good or evil purposes, in this case the Holy Grail or Graal, but few have done it as well as Charles Williams. I’ve read it at least five times, and I also think it has one of the most attention-grabbing opening lines in fiction: “The telephone bell was ringing wildly, but without result, since there was no-one in the room but the corpse.”


Who am I?

I have degrees in history and Christian theology, and enjoy science fiction and fantasy stories, whether set on earth, or in other worlds, whether real (other planets of our solar system), hypothetical (possible planets in other galaxies), or imaginary (Narnia, Wonderland). But I like those set in this world best, and value them especially for the insights they give into life, the universe, and everything. As C.S. Lewis once said to his friend J.R.R. Tolkien, if we want more of the kind of stories we like, we shall have to write them ourselves. The books I’ve recommended are the kind I like, and I’ve tried to write a few more. 


I wrote...

The Enchanted Grove

By Stephen Hayes,

Book cover of The Enchanted Grove

What is my book about?

Jeffery, Janet, and Catherine spend their summer school holidays swimming and riding horses in the foothills of the Drakensberg mountains of South Africa. But then they have to deal with bullying teenagers who are into witchcraft (one of whom has a magical hyena skull), poachers, a witch who lures them into a deadly enchanted grove, and the strange guardian of a cave of Bushman paintings. And just when it seems that things couldn’t possibly get worse, the children stumble across a secret government project that the police think they know far too much about.  

Kingdom Come

By Tim LaHaye, Jerry B. Jenkins,

Book cover of Kingdom Come

One could say there are different stages of heaven. This book talks about how wonderful things will one day be on earth but shows that paradise is not paradise just because the devil doesn’t exist anymore. A plot develops to go against the king who has brought wonderment to the earth. It is the story of how peacefulness meets mankind at its selfish core. There are more Bible quotes that I would think would be necessary to go into a fiction story, but overall it is a good presentation to show what this future world will look like and function.


Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by science fiction and by Biblical Scripture. That may seem dichotomous to some, but not to me. I have a passion for science and for Scripture because both bring understanding about our world from the microcosm to the macrocosm. My writings are a mixture of science and mystery with a science fiction feel and a Christian perspective. I like stories that show how truth arises even from the dark, confusing, and ambiguity of life to help one discover something about God they may not have considered before, and at the same time enjoy a fun, fast-paced, and exciting journey as they read.


I wrote...

Rebellion in the Stones of Fire

By Randy C. Dockens,

Book cover of Rebellion in the Stones of Fire

What is my book about?

Come read how who we call the Adversary, or Lucifer, or Satan, or the devil falls from the highest of places to where he is today. Understand the conflict that starts in Heaven and how it extends to Earth. See everything through the eyes of Mikael, the Captain of the Lord’s Hosts: from the beginning of the universe, the initial rebellion, creation of time, the Garden of Eden, and up through the time of Noah, the Nephilim, and the Flood. Get a different perspective on these events that will help you rediscover the awe of age-old Bible stories and give you a new perspective for you to ponder. 

Deadline

By Randy Alcorn,

Book cover of Deadline

This was quite an interesting take to see the relationship between those who have gone to heaven and those who are left behind. A tragic accident separates those who lived from those who died, but those in heaven are still able to look over the lives of their loved ones. This novel provides a lot for the reader to process and ponder as well as provide hope to those left behind suffering.


Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by science fiction and by Biblical Scripture. That may seem dichotomous to some, but not to me. I have a passion for science and for Scripture because both bring understanding about our world from the microcosm to the macrocosm. My writings are a mixture of science and mystery with a science fiction feel and a Christian perspective. I like stories that show how truth arises even from the dark, confusing, and ambiguity of life to help one discover something about God they may not have considered before, and at the same time enjoy a fun, fast-paced, and exciting journey as they read.


I wrote...

Rebellion in the Stones of Fire

By Randy C. Dockens,

Book cover of Rebellion in the Stones of Fire

What is my book about?

Come read how who we call the Adversary, or Lucifer, or Satan, or the devil falls from the highest of places to where he is today. Understand the conflict that starts in Heaven and how it extends to Earth. See everything through the eyes of Mikael, the Captain of the Lord’s Hosts: from the beginning of the universe, the initial rebellion, creation of time, the Garden of Eden, and up through the time of Noah, the Nephilim, and the Flood. Get a different perspective on these events that will help you rediscover the awe of age-old Bible stories and give you a new perspective for you to ponder. 

Heaven Knows What

By Grant Lewi,

Book cover of Heaven Knows What

Grant Lewi was a legendary astrologer. He was the editor of Dell’s Horoscope magazine in the 1930s and '40s. He died in 1951 and this book is most likely out of print, but you can still get it on the Internet. He was such a master that he simplified the casting and interpretation of Horoscopes to a level that beginners could understand. A great entry point into astrology. The legend is that he knew the date of his death from his horoscope and bought a large life insurance policy shortly before that! His heirs did well and he paid next to nothing.

Who am I?

I am a full-time practicing astrologer who’s been in practice for over 35 years. There’s a lot of misconceptions about this noblest and holy science and I’ve written extensively over the years to explain things to the best of my ability. I am the author of Sun Sign Success, Pendulum Power, Your Personal Horoscope (a series that is going on for 29 years now), The Magic Stone, A Spiritual View Of The 12 Signs, The Moving Universe, and numerous articles in the astrological press. I live in Florida and I deal with an international clientele.


I wrote...

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs: An Introduction to Spiritual Astrology

By Joseph Polansky,

Book cover of A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs: An Introduction to Spiritual Astrology

What is my book about?

This is not your typical sun sign book, though I deal with the 12 signs. It is an explanation of the astrological signs from a spiritual perspective. Beyond its obvious psychological insights and forecasting uses, Astrology is in essence a spiritual science with deep spiritual roots. It is also a spiritual path. Every person - because of his or her Horoscope - resonates with different spiritual paths. Even the advent of major religious movements have their origins in the stars. This book doesn’t cover all the aspects of astrology and spirituality but is meant to be an introduction to it. 

The Resurrected

By Megan Hart,

Book cover of The Resurrected

Originally released in ten parts as a horror serial, The Resurrected is a real treat. For starters, the zombie virus has a unique origin. The planet is hit by a series of freak storms. In the aftermath, strange flowers bloom, spreading a virus that transmits across humanity. The shocking action that follows is told from a shifting array of characters with many of their stories intertwining. My favorite thing about this book is Hart’s visceral description. Her sensory details will transport the reader right into each moment. It’s a wicked read, and features the best zombie sex scene you’ll ever read!


Who am I?

I’ve been reading horror books and watching horror movies since I was entirely too young to do either—thanks to my father’s collection of Stephen King books and my uncle’s love of horror movies. Now I’m a horror writer and wake early each morning to make blank pages darker. Zombies remain one of my favorite horror sub-genres. There’s something relentlessly compelling about these mindless ghouls linking inside each of us waiting for some triggering event to set them loose. Maybe it’s the resulting chaos. Maybe it’s the gruesome horror. Mostly, it’s how such tales show us the fragility of our civilization and the darkness of our own nature. 


I wrote...

That Risen Snow: A Scary Tale of Snow White and Zombies (The Scary Tales) (Volume 1)

By Rob E. Boley,

Book cover of That Risen Snow: A Scary Tale of Snow White and Zombies (The Scary Tales) (Volume 1)

What is my book about?

The angry young dwarf named Grouchy has long dreaded this day. His abusive father raised him to hate humans, yet when a troubled human girl named Snow sought sanctuary at the home for wayward young dwarfs, Grouchy fell in love with her. Snow now lies in cursed slumber. When a smitten Prince arrives to kiss her awake, Grouchy feels as though his world is about to end. He has no idea how right he is. Snow wakes up, but she doesn’t wake up right.

Now a deranged zombie, Snow infects both the Prince and the dwarfs’ elder leader. It’s up to Grouchy and his friends to find a cure for her malicious curse to stop That Risen Snow...

Dog Heaven

By Cynthia Rylant,

Book cover of Dog Heaven

I’ve had friends tell me that they don’t want to love another dog because they can’t bear it when the dog dies. It’s hard to lose a pet, no matter whether you are old or young. Dog Heaven allows us to imagine our old friends in an afterlife that’s fashioned just for them. God knows what dogs like—a place to run, dog treats in funny shapes, fluffy clouds as dog beds, and special homes where they are petted and reminded how good they are all day long. This hopeful picture book offers comfort as our Angel dogs “will be there when old friends show up. They will be there at the door.” 


Who am I?

Years ago, I returned to school at Mount Holyoke College to complete my bachelor’s degree in American Studies. I took a course on Emily Dickinson at the poet’s home in Amherst, Massachusetts—what a thrill! On the first day of class I learned that for sixteen years Emily’s constant companion was Carlo, a Newfoundland dog. Having experienced a hairy, slobbery encounter with a Newf when I was twenty while wearing a white dress, I knew the myth of Emily, pristinely dressed, untouched by the more earthy emotions was wrong. A new story needed to be told. That was the beginning of Emily and Carlo.


I wrote...

Emily and Carlo

By Marty Rhodes Figley, Catherine Stock (illustrator),

Book cover of Emily and Carlo

What is my book about?

By telling the story of Emily Dickinson and Carlo, the poet becomes a real person who loved a very large, messy, hairy dog for sixteen years. He was her playmate, friend, guide, and protector. Carlo was lauded in many of her poems and letters. According to Emily, “The dog is the noblest work of art.” As a fellow dog-lover, I agree. Dogs bring out the best in us. I think Carlo did the same for Emily. Also, the fabulously talented illustrator, Catherine Stock, another Emily admirer, brought out the best in my story with her gorgeous art.

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