Children's Loss Book List 

When loss and grief is experienced in a family the adults are often left wondering how to talk to their children. Reading a story can offer a safe way to open up a dialogue with children about their loss, it also helps kids know they are not alone and normalize what they are experiencing.

Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope: A Read Aloud Story for People of All Ages About Loving and Losing, Friendship and Hope by Donna R. O'Toole

Always and Forever by Alan Durant

A Taste of Blackberries by Doris Buchanan Smith

A Terrible Thing Happened by Margaret M. Holmes and Sasha J. Mudlaff

Badger’s Parting Gifts by Susan Varley

Can You Hear Me Smiling?: A Child Grieves a Sister by Aariane R. Jackson and Leigh Lawhon

Chester Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories by Audrey Penn and Barbara Leonard Gibson

Daddy, Up and Down: Sisters Grieve the Loss of Their Daddy by Lila Stenson

Dancing on the Moon by Janice Roper

Everybody Feels Sad by Holly Sterling and Moira Butterfield

Finding Grandpa Everywhere: A Young Child Discovers Memories of a Grandparent by John Hodge

Gentle Willow: A Story for Children About Dying by Joyce C. Mills

Ghost Wings by Barbara Joosse

Goodbye Mousie by Robie H. Harris

Grandma's Scrapbook by Josephine Nobisso and Maureen Hyde

Grief is Like a Snowflake by Julia Cook

Help Me Say Goodbye by Janis Silverman

Her Mother’s Face by Roddy Doyle and Freya Blackwood

I’ll Always Love You by Hans Wilhelm

I Miss You: A First Look at Death by Pat Thomas and Leslie Harker

I Wish I Could Hold Your Hand…: A Child’s Guide to Grief and Loss by Ed.D. Pat Palmer

Ladder to the Moon by Maya Soetoro-Ng and Yuyi Morales

Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children by Bryan Mellonie

Lighthouse: A Story of Remembrance by Robert Munsch

Lost and Found: Remembering a Sister by Ellen Yeomans

Missing Mommy: A Book About Bereavement by Rebecca Cobb

My Baby Big Sister: A Book for Children Born Subsequent to a Pregnancy Loss by Cathy Blanford

My Grandson Lew by Charlotte Zolotow

Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs by Tomie dePaola

Old Pig by Margaret Wild and Ron Brooks

Pearl’s Marigolds for Grandpa by Jane Breskin Zalben

Ragtail Remembers: A Story That Helps Children Understand Feelings of Grief by Liz Duckworth

Remembering Mama by Dara Dokas

Rudi’s Pond by Eve Bunting

Sad Isn’t Bad: A Good-Grief Guidebook for Kids Dealing with Loss by Michaelene Mundy

Samantha Jane’s Missing Smile: A Story About Coping With the Loss of a Parent by Julie Kaplow

Sammy in the Sky by Barbara Walsh

Saying Goodbye to Daddy by Judith Vigna

Saying Goodbye to Lulu by Corinne Demas and Ard Hoyt

Someone I Love Died by Christine Harder Tangvald

Stacy Had a Little Sister by Wendie Old

Tear Soup: A Recipe for Healing After Loss by Pat Schwiebert

The Angel with the Golden Glow: A Family’s Journey Through Loss and Healing by Elissa Al-Chokhachy

The Boy Who Didn’t Want to Be Sad by Rob Goldblatt

The Copper Tree by Hilary Robinson and Mandy Stanley

The Empty Place: A Child’s Guide Through Grief by Roberta Temes Ph.D. and Kim Carlisle

The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages by Leo Buscaglia

The Goodbye Book by Todd Parr

The Grandpa Tree by Mike Donahue

The Invisible String by Patrice Karst and Geoff Stevenson

The Memory String by Eve Bunting

The Mountains of Tibet by Mordicai Gerstein

The Saddest Time by Norma Simon

The Scar by Charlotte Moundlic

The Tenth Good Thing About Barney by Judith Viorst

Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children by Doris Stickney

What Happened When Grandma Died? by Peggy Barker

What’s Heaven? by Maria Shriver

When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death by Laurie Krasny Brown

When Your Grandparent Dies: A Child’s Guide to Good Grief by Victoria Ryan

Where Are You? A Child’s Book About Loss by Laura Olivieri

Where Do People Go When They Die? by Mindy Avra Portnoy and Shelly O. Haas

Where’s Jess: For Children Who Have a Brother or Sister Die by Marvin Johnson

Older Children/Young Adult's Loss Book List

• After a Suicide by The Dougy Center (A 62 page activity book to assist children)

• After Suicide by Eileen Kuehn (64 pages of Teen Talk, fast facts, questions and answers)

• Always and Forever by Alan Durant and Debi Gilion

• Living when a Young Friend Commits Suicide by Earl Grollman and Max Malikow (Easy to read for youth includes signs of impending suicide, what to do, who to tell)

• Someone I Love Died by Suicide: A Story for Child Survivors and those Who Care About Them by Doreen Cammarata, MS (Intended for parents to read to children)

• Talking With Children About Loss by Maria Trozzi (Intended for parents to read to children)

Adult's Loss Book List

Grief Resources

• Back To Life by Jennie Wright (Provides grief education, coping strategies, soothing comfort and hope)

• Good Grief by Granger Westberg (This comes from a Christian perspective)

• Grieving: How to Go on Living When Someone You Love Dies by Therese Rando (Includes sudden and unexpected death)

• Healing After Loss: Daily Meditations for Working through Grief by Martha Whitman Hickman

• I Wasn't Ready to Say Goodbye: Surviving, Coping & Healing After the Sudden Death of a Loved One by Brook Noel & Pamela D Blair (A helpful hands-on approach especially helpful during the first weeks after a sudden tragic loss)

• Tear Soup by Pat Schweibert. (Great for a grieving family to read together)

• The Journey through Grief by Alan D. Wolfelt, PhD (Explores the physical, emotional and spiritual journey of grief)

• What Will Help Me? by Jim Miller (Offers 12 suggestions for the griever)

• When Bad Things Happen to Good People by Rabbi Harold Kushner (The author experienced a crisis of faith when his 13-year-old son Aaron died of a rare disease)

Death of a Parent

• Always Too Soon by Allison Gilbert (Compilation of about 20 peoples stories who have lost both parents)

• Death of a Parent: Transitions to a New Adult Identity by Debra Umberson (Provides research-based self-help)

• Fatherloss: How Sons of All Ages Come to Terms with the Death of their Dad by Neil Chethik (National survey of 300 men and interviews with 70 others)

• Finding Your Way after Your Parent Dies: Hope for Grieving Adults by Richard Gilbert (Practical suggestions for navigating the loss of a parent)

• Forgiving Our Parents, Forgiving Ourselves: Healing Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families by David A. Stoop (Understanding the root of your pain, through exploring the family patterns that perpetuate dysfunction)

• Grieving the Death of a Mother by Harold Ivan Smith (Guides readers through their grief, from the process of dying through the acts of remembering and honoring a mother after her death)

• How to Survive the Loss of a Parent by Ackner & Whitney (Helps survivors understand how the parental relationship influenced other aspects of their lives)

• In My Mother’s Kitchen : An Introduction to the Healing Power of Reminiscence by Robin A. Edgar (Focuses on the steps to recall; record and celebrate memories)

• In the Letting Go: Words to Heal the Heart on the Death of a Mother by Jonathon Lazear (The holiday rituals, the special birthday celebrations for children/grandchildren and the memories are often held by the mother)

• Living in the Shadow if the Ghosts of Grief by Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D (Includes death of loved ones, divorce, children who leave home, and decline of health)

• Losing Your Parents, Finding Yourself: The Defining Turning Point of Adult Life by Victoria Secunda (Discovering adult relationships with siblings, children, and friends)

• Losing a Parent: Passage to a New way of Living by Alexandra Kennedy (Innovative strategies for healing and transformation)

• Midlife Orphan by Jane Brooks (Parental grief complicated by job, marriage, health changes and empty nest)

• Nobody’s Child Anymore: Grieving, Caring and Comforting When Parents Die by Barbara Barticci (Caring for a dying parent, mourning the loss, & caring for the parent left behind)

• On Love Alone: Words to Heal on the Death of a Father by Jonathon Lazear (Collection of quotes, poems, and passages)

• Recovering From the Loss of a Parent by Katherine Donnelly

• She Loved Me, She Loved Me Not: Adult Parent Loss after a Conflicted Relationship by Linda J Converse

• The Orphaned Adult: Confronting the Death of a Parent by Marc D. Angel (Addresses the processes of adult orphanhood, including anticipating the death of a parent, mourning the parent, and internalizing the reality of the parent's death)

• The Orphaned Adult: Understanding and Coping with Grief and Change after the Death of Our Parents by Alexander Levy (Incorporating his own personal experience with the accounts of others who have lost their parents)

• When Parents Die: A Guide for Adults by Edward Myers

Death of a Spouse

• A Decembered Grief: Living with Loss While Others are Celebrating by Harold Ivan Smith

• A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis (The author’s heavy spiritual journey through grief)

• A Time to Say Good-Bye: Moving Beyond Loss by Mary McClure Goulding

• After the Flowers: Life beyond Widowhood by Alice Grossman Daniels (A collection of essays)

• A Handbook for Widowers by Ed Ames (Talks to men openly and honestly about tears, guilt, feelings of anger, depression, isolation and loneliness. Also health, job, other money matters, living alone and what to do with her things)

• Being a Widow by Lynn Caine (Practical advice re: loneliness, stress, depression, legal and financial problems, re-emerging sexuality, dreams and more)

• Does anybody else hurt this bad-- and live? by Carlene Vester Eneroth

• Don't Take My Grief Away: What to Do When You Lose a Loved One by Doug Manning

• Don't Take My Grief Away From Me by Doug Manning and Glenda Stansbury

• Finding Your Way After Your Spouse Dies by Marta Felber (A guide for coping with the practical issues that face the recently widowed)

• Getting to the Other Side of Grief: Overcoming the Loss of a Spouse by Susan J. Zonnebelt-Smeenge, Robert C. De Vries

• Grief: A Natural Reaction To Loss by Marge Eaton Heegaard

• Grief Expressed: When a Mate Dies by Marta Felber (Trees are used as a metaphor and employs gentle exercises for the reader to discover their own strengths)

• Healing a Spouse's Grieving Heart: 100 Practical Ideas After Your Husband or Wife Dies by Alan D.Wolfelt

• How To Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies by Therese Rando

• How to Survive the Loss of a Love by Melba Colgrove (Addresses spouse or partner death)

• I'm Grieving as Fast as I Can: How Young Widows and Widowers Cope and Heal by Linda Feinberg

• Instantly a Widow by Ruth Sisson (Christian perspective on recovering from the sudden loss of a spouse)

• Living Again: A Personal Journey For Surviving the Loss of a Spouse by William Wallace (A guide to surviving the loss of a mate)

• Loss and Found: How We Survived the Loss of a Young Spouse by Gary Young and Kathy Young (Written by young widowed people, out of their own experiences of loss and creating a blended family)

• Lost My Partner – What’ll I Do? A Practical Guide for Coping and Finding Strength When Your Spouse Dies by Laurie J. Spector

• Love Letters; Reflections on Living With Loss by Andris A. Baltins

• Mom Minus Dad by Jamieson Haverkampf

• On the Road: Surviving the Loss of a Spouse by Sheryl Garrett

• Remembering with Love: Messages of Hope for the First Year of Grieving and Beyond by Elizabeth Levang (Ph.D.) and Sherokee Ilse (Over 300 short, inspirational messages of hope)

• Starting from Scratch When You're Single Again by Sharon M. Knudson and Mary Fran Heitzman

• Surviving Grief…and Learning to Live Again by Catherine M. Sanders (five phases of grief: shock, awareness of loss, conversation and the need to withdraw, healing and renewal)

• Surviving Widowhood by Esther Goshen-Gottstein (Personal account of emerging from darkness to light)

• The Death of a Wife: Reflections for a Grieving Husband (Comfort After a Loss) by Robert Vogt

• The Healing Power of Love: Transcending the Loss of a Spouse to New Love by Cloria Lintermans and Marilyn Stolzman

• The Loss of a Life Partner by Carolyn Ambler Walter (22 stories of individuals whose life partner died, presenting them against a tapestry of bereavement theories and issues)

• The Light at the End of the Tunnel: Coming Back to Life After a Spouse Dies by Mary Ward Menke (Written by those who have "been there, done that" to help themselves while helping others)

• The Tender Scar: Life After the Death of a Spouse by Richard L. Mabry (Includes contact information for support groups)

• The Widowed Self: the Older Woman’s Journey through Widowhood by Deborah Kestin Van Den Hoonaard

• Understanding Your Grief: Ten Essential Touchstones for Finding Hope and Healing Your Heart by Alan D. Wolfelt

• Waking Up Alone: Grief & Healing by Julie K. Cicero (Everyone's experience with grief is different. Recognizing and understanding the varied pathways of grief is crucial to your healing process)

• When a Man Faces Grief / A Man You Know Is Grieving by James E. Miller and Thomas Golden

• When Your Spouse Dies (Hope & Healing Series) by Mildred Tengbom (Addresses the emotions and difficulties widows and widowers face as they look ahead to life without their spouses)

• When Your Spouse Dies: A concise and Practical Source of Help and Advice by Cathleen L. Curry

• When Will I Stop Hurting?: Dealing with a Recent Death by June Cerza Kolf

• Widow to Widow: Thoughtful Practical ideas for Rebuilding Your Life by Genevieve Davis Ginsburg

• Widowed by Joyce Dr. Brothers

• Widowed Too Soon: A Young Widow's Journey through Grief, Healing, and Spiritual Transformation, Second Edition by Laura Hirsch

• Widower: When Men are Left Alone by Scott Campbell with Phyllis R. Silverman, Ph.D (Contains the oral histories of twenty men, ranging in age from 30 to 94, who have lost their wives to a range of causes)

• Widow To Widow: Thoughtful, Practical Ideas For Rebuilding Your Life by Genevieve Davis Ginsburg

• Widows Wear Stilettos: A Practical and Emotional Guide for the Young Widow by Carole Brody Fleet and Syd Harriet

Suicide Survivors For Adults

• Aftershock: Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide by Arrington Cox, Candy David, David Cox & Candy Arrington. (Provides encouragement and support for survivors)

• Always and Forever by Alan Durant and Debi Gilion

• Andrew, You Died Too Soon: A Family Experience of Grieving and Living Again by Corrine Chilstrom (Scriptural, Christian approach to grief and transformation from a tragic eve

• But I Didn’t Say Goodbye by Barbara Rubel (For parents and professionals to assist young survivors)

• Dying to Be Free: A Healing Guide for Families After a Suicide by Beverly Cobain Beverly & Jean Larch (Breaks through the dangerous silence and stigma surrounding suicide)

• Grieving a Suicide: A Loved One's Search for Comfort, Answers & Hope by Albert Y. Hsu

• Grieving the Unexpected: The Suicide of a Son by Dr Gary Leblanc

• Healing after the Death Suicide of a Loved One by Ann Smolin and John Guinan (Special chapters for the death of parents, children, siblings and spouse and a directory of support groups nation-wide)

• In the Wake of Suicide: Stories of People Left Behind by Alexander Victoria (Comforting stories of many survivors and their individual reactions to the suicide of a loved one)

• My Son, My Son: A Guide to Healing After a Suicide in the Family by Iris Bolton and Curtis Mitchell

• No Time to Say Goodbye: Surviving the Suicide of a Loved One by Carla Fine (Author experienced the death of her husband by suicide and explores the social stigma)

• Seven Choices by Elizabeth Harper Neeld, Ph.D. (Describes the steps each of us can take to find a new balance for our lives after experiencing death, divorce, illness, as well as grief, loss and change of any kind)

• Silent Grief - Living in the Wake of Suicide by Christopher Lukas & Henry M.Seiden (How the emotional aftermath of suicide differs from that of normal bereavement)

• Stronger Than Death: When Suicide Touches Your Life by Sue Chance (Personal struggle to cope with the suicide of author’s only child)

• Suicide: Why? by Adina Wrobleski

• Survivors of Suicide by Rita Robinson (This newly revised edition goes into more detail about teen suicide and the help that is available, and dispels the myths surrounding suicide)

• The Bereaved Parent by Harriet Sarnoff Schiff

• The Empty Chair by Berly Glover (Suicide of a brother and a daughter)

• The Suicidal Mind by Edwin S. Shneidman (Offers practical, explicit maneuvers to assist in treating a suicidal individual--steps that can be taken by concerned friends or family and professionals alike)

• The Suicide Of My Son by Trudy Carlson (Sheds light into the little-understood symptoms of depressive illness and anxiety disorders in youngsters. She explains the biological nature of these conditions, and maps out a low-cost, effective school based program for recognizing and treating school-aged youth. Thecorrelation between depressive illness and teen suicide is examined)

• Why Suicide? by Eric Marcus (Nonjudgmental guide for people whose lives have been touched by suicide)

• Words I Never Thought to Speak by Victoria Alexander (First person accounts of people's struggles after a loss by suicide)

Helping Others

• Healing a Friend’s Grieving Heart: 100 Practical Ideas for Helping Someone You Love through Loss by Alan D. Wolfelt, PhD

• Helping People through Grief by Delores Kuenning (Addresses grief due to abortion, rape, adoption, loss of health, loss of body parts, and death)

Condolence for adults

• Different Losses, Different Issues: What to Expect and How to Help by Johnette Hartnett

• Don’t Ask for the Dead Man’s Golf Clubs: What to Do and Say (and What Not to) When a Friend Loses a Loved One by Lynn Kelly

• Finding the Right Words: Offering Care and Comfort When You Don’t Know What to Say by Wilfred Bockelman

• The Art of Condolence: What to Write, What to Say, What to Do at a Time of Loss by Leonard and Hilary Zunin