Michael Brown narrates the story of a solitary author (Michael) who is coerced by a friend to visit a mutual acquaintance dying of cancer in the local hospital. Michael reluctantly agrees to visit one time. Set in the dusty Karoo desert town of Aberdeen, South Africa, Tales for Mariette tells of the friendship that forms between Michael and Mariette Van Wyk, as his visits become numerous. The two bond over Michael's sharing of cat stories from his many years of experiencing cats in his life. Michael's wish is to have enough stories to share with Mariette throughout the holidays, and Mariette's life-long wish to experience what cats are like comes alive through cat tales over tea and cookies. These stories magically bring healing and resolution of their pasts to both Michael and Mariette, as well as comfort and insight to Mariette as she takes this difficult journey toward death.