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8 Essential Books About Death That Are Appropriate For Kids

Kids can often grow up scared of death. The best way to get rid of those nightmares might be one of these insightful books.

It’s easy to get obsessed thinking about death as an adult – it’s the major unknown of our world. It’s no different for kids, who are usually happy and optimistic.

If you struggle to explain to your kid what death is, that’s completely normal. It’s very difficult to accept the idea, especially if you’re little. Thankfully, these books are very carefully written for kids and will stabilize their worries. It might even be helpful for you to read them yourself!

#1 Where Are You Now? by Tyler Clark Burke

Where Are You Now? by Tyler Clark BurkeGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Told in simple but powerful prose, and illustrated by the author in a wash of brilliant watercolor, Tyler Clark Burke’s Where Are You Now is a beautiful book about change, death, and transformation. From the disappearance of a shooting star, to the more profound loss of a loved one, Where Are You Now provides a bright and joyful framework to help shape difficult conversations about death with our children.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#2 Mr. Clark’s Big Band: A Year of Laughter, Tears, and Jazz in a Middle School Band Room

Mr. Clark's Big Band: A Year of Laughter, Tears, and Jazz in a Middle School Band RoomGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

The book, which chronicles the year after the boy’s death, is a tale of a small Massachusetts community, led by a charismatic teacher, working together to help heal their grieving children (and themselves) through the power of music. The book is suitable for middle school readers and up.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#3 Never Long Enough (paperback): Finding comfort and hope amidst grief and loss

Never Long Enough (paperback): Finding comfort and hope amidst grief and lossGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

In creating Never Long Enough – a unique book about the end of life, Rabbi Joseph H. Krakoff and artist Dr. Michelle Y. Sider brought together their many years of professional expertise with families. Krakoff drew on lessons learned in many years of counseling adults and children wrestling with death, grief and remembrance. Sider’s years working as an artist, arts educator and psychologist influenced her approach in creating evocative images that demonstrate how art can help to unlock emotions and heal the heart. Together, they crafted an interactive keepsake book for families and friends, complete with pages to add personal reflections thereby transforming the book into an individualized tribute to a loved one.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#4 Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children

Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to ChildrenGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Children grieve differently at different stages of development. When younger they need a more concrete explanation and this book provides that. It talks about the life cycle in nature and then connects that to people in a matter-of-fact way.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#5 When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death (Dino Life Guides for Families)

When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death (Dino Life Guides for Families) Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

This book is definitely for older children who can understand more abstract thinking. It details ways people can die, what happens at a funeral, some of the spiritual side, etc.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#6 The Memory Box: A Book About Grief

The Memory Box: A Book About GriefGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

This book is an excellent resource for helping kids understand the process of grief. Children work through emotions in play and in action so suggestions on how to make their own memory box is extremely beneficial.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#7 I Have a Question about Death: Clear Answers for All Kids, including Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder or other Special Needs

I Have a Question about Death: Clear Answers for All Kids, including Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder or other Special NeedsGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

I Have a Question about Death: Clear Answers for All Kids, including Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder or other Special Needs by Arlen Grad Gaines, Meredith Englander Polsky with Autism or developmental delays also need a more concrete explanation of the world around them. This book strives to do that.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#8 I Will Always Love You: A Journey From Grief & Loss to Hope & Love

I Will Always Love You: A Journey From Grief & Loss to Hope & LoveGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Adults and kid alike resonate with stories in rhyme. I had the pleasure of hearing I Will Always Love You read live by Melissa Lyons on my grief podcast Coming Back: Conversations on Life After Loss. It’s message of reassurance that loved ones continue a relationship with us beyond death is a beautiful way to remind kids that they can keep talking to and engaging with deceased friends and relatives even though their physical bodies are gone.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Contributors to this article
Tyler Burke from TylerBurke

Meredith O’Brien from MeredithO’Brien

Susan Stitt from Front Edge Publishing

Jennifer Hoffman from J Hoffman Therapy

Shelby Forsythia from ShelbyForsythia

Written by Zak Parker

Journalist, writer, musician, professional procrastinator. I'll add more here later.

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