A message from the Director:

We suggest starting with the books listed here, and we welcome your suggestions for other books to add to the list. Feel free to email your comments and recommendations to us.

-Victoria Stephan


Preschool through 3rd grade (ages 3 through 8)

  • Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope by Donna O’Toole (Celo Press, 1998)
  • The Accident by C. Carrick (Seabury Press, 1976)
  • About Gramma by Vaunda M. Nelson (So China Printing, 1988)
  • A Father Like That by C. Zolotov (Harper& Row, 1971)
  • Friends by Helme Hein (Aladdin Books, 1986)
  • Nana Upstairs, Nana Downstairs by Tomie dePaola (Putnam, 2000)

4th through 8th grade (ages 9 through 13)

  • Am I Still a Sister? by Alicia M. Sims (Sims Publications, 1986)
  • An Elephant in the Living Room by Jill Hastings and Marion Tuppo (CompCare Press, 1977)
  • Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White (Harper & Row, 1952; also on DVD)
  • The Education of Little Tree by Forrest Carter (University of New Mexico Press, 1976)
  • Bridge to Terabithia by K. Paterson (Avon Books, 1977; also on DVD)
  • Children Facing Grief by Janis Romond (Abbey Press, 1989)

9th through 12th grade (ages 14 through 18)

  • After Suicide by John Hewitt (Westminster Press, 1980)
  • Anne Frank: A Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (Doubleday, 1952; also on DVD)
  • Brian Piccolo: A Short Season by Jeannie Morris (Dell, 1972; also on DVD)
  • Eric by Doris Lund (Lippencott, 1974)
  • I Heard the Owl Call My Name by M. Craven (Doubleday, 1973)
  • Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom (Random House, 2002)
  • The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (Hyperion Press, 2007)
  • The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom (Random House, 2004)


  • After the Funeral by Jane Loretta Winsch (Paulist Press, 1995)
  • Healing and Growing Through Grief by Donna O’Toole (Compassion Books, 1993)
  • Praying Through Grief by Maureeyn O’Brien
    (resources for prayer services for those grieving a loss)
  • What Can I Say? by Kelly Osmour
  • In Times of Illness by Robert Hamma
  • Through Good Times and Bad by Robert Hamma and Kahtyn Schneider
  • Simply Surrender by John Kirvan
  • Peace of Heart by John Kirvan
  • You Shall Not Want by Richard Chilson
  • Befriend the Darkness, Welcome the Light by Joyce Rupp

Adult Children (Older Parent’s Death)

  • Recovering from the Loss of a Parent by Katharine Fair Donnelly


  • In Times of Caregiving by Robert Hamma
  • The Circle of Life byJoyce Rupp
  • Take Five by Joseph Champlin
  • Riding the Dragon by Robert Wicks
  • Walking With Those Who Hurt by Joyce Rupp
  • May I Walk You Home by Joyce Rupp
  • Praying Our Goodbyes by Joyce Rupp

Holiday Coping

  • Not Just Another Day by Missy Lowery


  • Cowbells and Courage by Pat Paige
  • Does Anyone Hurt This Bad and Live by Carlene Vester Eneroth
  • Waterbugs and Dragonflies by Doris Stickney
  • Toward Peace: Prayers for the Widowed by Beverley S. Gordon

For further reading click on these offsite resources :

Ave Maria Press
Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana

Centering Corporation
Omaha, Nebraska

Franciscan Media