Our counselors recommend these books on grief and often mention them in our sessions. They’re listed by age group, so you can easily find age-appropriate reading for your child and yourself. We also have recommended reading for different types of loss.

The Siouxland Public Libraries have many books on grief available. See a list of our library book recommendations.

Books for children 4 – 8 years

  • “When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death” by Laurie and Marc Brown
  • “I Miss You: A First Look at Death” by Thomas and Harker
  • “Badger’s Parting Gifts” by Susan Varley
  • “Where’s Jess: For Children Who Have a Brother or Sister Die” by Marvin and Joy Johnson
  • “The Empty Place: A Child’s Guide Through Grief” by Roberta Temes
  • “I Had A Friend Named Peter – Talking to Children about the Death of a Friend” by Janice Cohn
  • “What’s Heaven?” by Maria Shriver
  • “Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children” by Doris Stickney
  • “Don’t Despair on Thursdays! The Children’s Grief-Management Book” (The Emotional Impact Series) by Adolph Moser (Author) and David Melton (Illustrator)
  • “The Fall of Freddie the Leaf” by Leo Buscaglia
  • “Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children” by Bryan Mellonie
  • “The Invisible String” by Patrice Karst

Books for children 9 – 12 years

  • “Tear Soup” by Pat Schweibert
  • “Gentle Willow: A Story for Children About Dying” by Joyce Mills
  • “The Dragonfly Secret: A Story of Boundless Love” by Clea Adams and Barbara Gibson
  • “The Snowman: A Book About Children and Grief” by Robin Vogel
  • “Good Grief: A Kids Guide for Dealing with Change and Loss” by Kim Frank
  • “Sad Isn’t Bad” by Michaelene Murphy
  • “The Magic Moth” by Virginia Lee
  • “Healing Your Grieving Heart: For Kids” by Alan D. Wolfelt
  • “Grief is Like a Snowflake” by Julie Cook

Books for Teens

  • “The Grieving Teen: A Guide for Teenagers and Their Friends” by Helen Fitzgerald
  • “Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers: How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love” by Earl Grollman
  • “You Are Not Alone: Teens Talk About Life After The Loss of a Parent” by Lynne Hughes
  • “Healing Your Grieving Heart for Teens: 100 Practical Ideas” by Alan Wolfelt
  • “When a Friend Dies: A Book for Teens About Grieving” by Marilyn Gootman
  • “Losing Someone You Love: When a Brother or Sister Dies” by E. Richter
  • “A Guidebook Through Grief for Teens” by Laura Dower

Books for Adults

  • “Guiding Your Child Through Grief” by James P. Emswiler and Mary Ann Emswiler
  • “Healing Your Grieving Heart” by Alan D. Wolfelt
  • “Healing a Child’s Grieving Heart” by Alan D. Wolfelt
  • “Understanding Your Grief: Ten Essential Touchstones for Finding Hope and
    Healing Your Heart” by Alan D. Wolfelt
  • “Children and Grief: When a Parent Dies” by J. William Worden
  • “Help Me Say Goodbye: Activities for Helping Kids Cope When a Special Person Dies” by Janis Silverman
  • “Talking With Children About Loss” by Maria Trozzi
  • “The Mourning Handbook: The Most Comprehensive Resource Offering Practical and Compassionate Advice on Coping with All Aspects of Death and Dying” by Helen  Fitzgerald
  • “Grief in Children: A Handbook for Adults” by Dyregrov and Yule
  • “I’m Grieving as Fast as I Can: How Young Widows and Widowers Can Cope and Heal” by Linda Feinberg
  • “The Grieving Child: A Parent’s Guide” by Helen Fitzgerald and Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
  • “Healing the Bereaved Child: Grief Gardening, Growth Through Grief and Other Touchstones for Caregivers” by Alan Wolfelt
  • “Bereaved Children and Teens: A Support Guide for Parents and Professionals” by Earl Grollman
  • “The Grieving Garden: Living with the Death of a Child” by Suzanne Redfern
  • “Alec’s Legacy” by Frank Robinson
  • “The Death Class: A True Story About Life” by Erika Hagasaki

Loss of a Child

  • “The Worst Loss” by Barbara D. Rosof
  • “I Wasn’t Ready To Say Goodbye” by Brook Noel & Pamela D. Blair, PH.D (sudden death)
  • “Help Your Marriage Survive the Death of a Child” by Paul C. Rosenblatt
  • “Gone But Not Lost: Grieving the Death of a Child” by David W. Wiersbe
  • “Grieving: Our Path Back to Peace” by James R. White
  • “A Grace Disguised: How the Soul Grows Through Loss” by Jerry Sittser

For Serious Illness

  • “How to Help Children Through a Parent’s Serious Illness” by Kathleen McCue (adults)
  • “Gentle Willow: A Story for Children About Dying” by Joyce Mills (young children)

Art Journals/Workbooks

  • “How I Feel: A Coloring Book for Grieving Children” by Alan Wolfelt (children)
  • “When Some Very Special Dies” by Marge Heedgaard (school age)
  • “When Someone Has a Very Serious Illness” by Marge Heegaard (school age)
  • “Good Grief for Kids” by Katherine Zotovich (school age and teens)
  • “Fire In My Heart, Ice In My Veins” by Centering Corporation (teens)
  • “Angel Catcher: A Journal of Loss and Remembrance” by Kathy and Amy Eldon (teens and adults)

Pet Loss

  • “The Tenth Good Thing About Barney” by Judith Viorst
  • “The Forever Dog” by Bill Cochran
  • “When a Pet Dies” by Fred Rogers
  • “Family Bereavement Resource Manual” by Full Circle Grief Center