Books on Grief

The following books may help to normalize your experience of loss, and perhaps bring a sense of meaning to what you are going through.

General Bereavement

  • A Grief Observed
    S. Lewis
    2013

    C.S. Lewis accounts for his personal loss of his wife, with a selection of his journal recordings during her passing. An intimate account of rediscovered faith.
  • Grief: The Courageous Journey
    Lang & Caplan
    1995

    If you’re grieving a loss, this book takes your hand and guides you, at your own pace, along the path of your own healing journey. Grief’s Courageous Journey provides a compassionate program of steps to take for coping with day-to-day life and accepting the changes in yourself and others.
  • Help me I Hurt
    John D. Martin and Elaine M. Egan
    2016

    Using the Three R’s, realize, recognize, and rebuild the authors present a manner for navigating the process of grief.
  • How to Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies
    Fando, Therese
    1991

    In this compassionate, comprehensive guide,  Therese A. Rando, Ph.D., bereavement specialist and  author of Loss And Anticipatory  Grief, leads you gently through the painful but  necessary process of grieving and helps you find  the best way for yourself.
  • Life After Loss
    Deits, Bob
    2009

    With great compassion and insight, Deits provides practical exercises for navigating the uncertain terrain of loss and grief, helping readers find positive ways to put together a life that is necessarily different, but equally meaningful.
  • Life’s Losses:  Living Through Grief, Bereavement and Sudden Change  Wylie, B.J.
    1996

    Analyzes some of the reasons for, & the meaning of, the many & continuous losses we all meet, & shows how to be sensitive to pain & loss without becoming either callous or overwhelmed.
  • Living Beyond Loss:  Death in the Family
    Walsh, F. & McGoldrick, M.
    2004

    clinical framework identifies variables that heighten risk for individual, couple, or family dysfunction and describes key processes that foster healing and growth.  Addresses spirituality, gender issues, suicide and other traumatic deaths, unacknowledged and stigmatized losses, and resilience-based approaches for families.
  • Living When a Loved One has Died
    Grollman, Earl
    1995

    Explains what emotions to expect when mourning, what pitfalls to avoid, and how to work through feelings of loss. Suitable for pocket or bedside, this gentle book guides the lonely and suffering as they move through the many facets of grief, begin to heal, and slowly build new lives.
  • The Courage to Grieve
    Tatelbaum, Judy
    2008
    This unusual self-help book about surviving grief offers the reader comfort and inspiration. Each of us will face some loss, sorrow and disappointment in our lives, and provides the specific help we need to enable us to face our grief fully and to recover and grow from the experience.
  • The Empty Chair: Handling Grief on Holidays and Special Occasions
    Susan J. Zonnebelt-Smeenge & Robert C. De Vries
    2012
    Whether you’ve lost a spouse, parent, child, friend, or sibling, this book invites you to journey through grief toward life-giving healing. You’ll learn how to incorporate new traditions on special days like anniversaries and birthdays, create memorials that honor and affirm your loved one’s life, rebuild your individual sense of identity, and more. Most of all, you’ll discover a new sense of joy that can become a special part of future holidays.
  • The Fault in Our Stars
    John Green
    2012
    Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars brilliantly explores the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.
  • The Mourning Handbook: A Complete Guide for the Bereaved
    Fitzgerald, H.
    1994

    Shares comforting, practical advice for anyone caught in the turmoil of losing a loved one, from everyday concerns such as placing an obituary and cemetery visits, to the myriad of complicated emotional issues involved–especially with accidental death and suicide.
  • Understanding Grief:  Helping Yourself Heal
    Wolfelt, Alan
    1992
    This classic resource helps guide the bereaved person through the loss of a loved one, and provides an opportunity to learn to live with and work through the personal grief process.
  • When Bad Things Happen to Good People
    Kushner, Harold
    2004

    A straightforward, elegant contemplation of the doubts and fears that arise when tragedy strikes. Kushner shares his wisdom as a rabbi, a parent, a reader, and a human being.
  • What Will Help Me?  How Can I Help?
    Miller, James
    2010

    Helpful suggestions for how one can move through one’s grief in a healthy, healing way. Held the opposite way (so the back cover becomes the front cover), it’s a book for those who want to help someone who is grieving.

Bereaved Parents

  • A Broken Heart Still Beats
    McCraken, Anne
    2000

    While nothing can mute the pain after the death of a child, this compilation of poetry, fiction, and essays about the pain, stages, grief, and coping offer inspiration and comfort in the wake of tragedy.
  • After the Death of a Child
    Finkbeiner, Ann
    1998

    Finkbeiner combines the research and the parents’ answers into a description of the parents’ new lives. The parents talk about their changed marriages and their changed relationships with their other children, with their friends and relatives. They talk about their attempts to make sense of the death and about their drastically changed priorities.
  • Beyond Endurance: When a Child Dies
    Knapp, Ronald

    2005
    No event is as traumatic as the death of a child. Dr. Knapp has interviewed over 155 families who experienced such a loss to determine how they coped or failed to cope. This book presents the results of his research, shedding light on constructive measures for responding to the tragedy, and calling attention to the special needs of surviving family members.Dr. Knapp examines three types of death: death occurring after a long illness, sudden or unexpected death, and death by murder.
  • Beyond Tears:  Living After Losing a Child
    Ellen Mitchel
    2009
    Meant to comfort and give direction to bereaved parents, Beyond Tears is written by nine mothers who have each lost a child. This revised edition includes a new chapter written from the perspective of surviving siblings.
  • Child Loss:  The Heartbreak and the  Hope
    Clara Hinton
    2016
    This book was born from a heart that has been broken by the loss of two of Clara Hinton’s sons. It is her belief that hearts broken by the loss of a child will always have a void, and there will forever be a longing ache for the child that is no longer here. But, we can and must learn to live in our brokenness. Deep within our hearts are seeds of hope. When we nurture those seeds we will learn how to see life with eyes of love once again. It is Clara’s sincere hope and prayer that as you read Child Loss: The Heartbreak and the Hope your heart will be warmed and you will be able to see life from a new perspective that moves far beyond the heartbreak of child loss into the light of hope. She wants to thank you for walking through this journey of loss with her. As we rewrite our story from within our brokenness, may our story be one of courage and hope! This book is a must-have for anyone who has experienced the loss of a child. It is a practical guide for re-entering life after loss and will most assuredly plant seeds of hope within your broken heart.
  • Empty Arms: Hope and Support for Those Who Have Suffered a Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Tubal Pregnancy
    Pam Vredevelt
    2001
    With the warmth and compassion of a Licensed Professional Counselor and writing as a mother who has suffered the loss of a baby and a sixteen-year-old son, Pam Vredevelt offers sound answers and advice. As an expert in love and loss, Pam gives reassuring comfort to any woman fighting to maintain stability and faith in the midst of devastating heartbreak. Empty Arms: Hope and Support for Those Who Have Suffered a Miscarriage, Stillbirth, or Tubal Pregnancy is the essential guidebook for anyone suffering the agony of losing a baby.
  • Empty Cradle, Broken Heart
    Davis, Deborah
    2016

    Offers reassurance to parents who struggle with anger, guilt, and despair during and after such a tragedy.  Deborah Davis encourages grieving and strives to cover many different kinds of loss, including information on issues such as the death of one or more babies from a multiple birth, pregnancy interruption, and the questioning of aggressive medical intervention.
  • Grieving the Child I Never Knew
    Kathe Wunnenberg
    2015
    Having experienced three miscarriages and the death of an infant son, Kathe Wunnenberg knows the deep anguish of losing a child. Grieving the Child I Never Knew was born from her personal journey through sorrow. It is a wise and tender companion for mothers whose hearts have been broken–mothers like you whose dreams have been shattered and who wonder how to go on. This devotional collection will help you grieve honestly and well. With seasoned insights and gentle questions, it invites you to present your hurts before God, and to receive over time the healing that He alone can–and will–provide. Each devotion includes: * Scripture passage and prayer * “Steps Toward Healing” questions * Space for journaling Readings for holidays and special occasions also included.
  • Healing a Parent’s Grieving Heart: 100 Practical Ideas After Your Child Dies
    Alan D. Wolfelt
    2002

    Simple yet highly effective methods for coping and healing, this book provides answers and relief to parents trying to deal with the loss of a child. It offers 100 practical, action-oriented tips for embracing grief, such as writing a letter to the child who has died; spending time with others who will listen to stories of grief; creating a memory book, box, or Web site; and remembering others who may still be struggling with the death. The guide also addresses common problems for grieving parents, including dealing with marital stress, helping surviving siblings, dealing with hurtful advice, and exploring feelings of guilt. This compassionate resource will aid parents who have been through the death of a child—whether the passing happened recently or many years ago, whether the child was young or an adult.
  • How to Survive the Loss of a Child
    Sanders, C
    1998

    It is only through experiencing grief that bereaved parents ultimately heal. Moving through the phases of grief, the bereaved person works toward restoration. Understanding these phases, knowing what to expect, and learning what they can do to help themselves give parents greater assurance and comfort.
  • Life After the Death of My Son: What I’m Learning
    Dennis Apple
    2008
    a glimpse of the unspeakable pain, helplessness, frustration, and eventual healing that Dennis and his wife, Buelah, have experienced since losing their son. He discloses his anger and disappointment with God; discusses his frustrations with friends and family; and shares how he’s dealt with the grief attacks, which continue to sneak up and surprise him. His painful, yet promising story offers comfort and connection to those walking similar paths. With understanding and compassion, Dennis offers grieving parents insight from 10 lessons he’s learned and #151;and continues to learn. His gentle words and honest understanding will guide those with grieving hearts on their difficult journey; giving them hope; helping them to discover ways in which God is able to continue the life of the child they loved.
  • Miscarriage:  Women Sharing from the Heart
    Allen & Marks
    1993

    offers support, empathy, and a clear path towards healing.  The personal stories of 100 women talking about their miscarriage experiences and interviews with fathers on how they have been affected, become helpful advice for partners, family members, and health care professionals.
  • Recovering from the Loss of a Child
    Donnelly, K
    2015
    By sharing, understanding, and accepting this tragic loss, bereaved parents, siblings, and others can cope with this intense grief. Intimate, telling interviews with survivors present practical ways in which surviving family members can take the necessary steps toward recovering from their devastating loss.
  • Silent Grief: Miscarriage – Child Loss: Finding Your Way Through The Darkness
    Clara Hinton
    1998
    Clara Hinton brings a clear message of hope through the cold mourning. Writing of her own grief, and interviewing scores of women and men, she offers not pat answers, but instead show us this: You are not alone.Additionally, the author touches the tears of other forms of child loss: stillbirth, missing children, and adult children who succumb to accident or illness.
  • Shattered: Surviving the Loss of a Child
    Gary Roe
    2017
    Bestselling author, hospice chaplain, and grief specialist Gary Roe uses his three decades of experience interacting with grieving parents to give us this heartfelt, easy-to-read, and intensely practical book. In Shattered, Roe walks the reader through the powerful impact a child’s death can have – emotionally, mentally, physically, relationally, and spiritually.
  • What Forever Means after the Death of a Child
    Talbot, K
    2002
    Writing from the perspective of bereaved parent and psychotherapist, the author describes the trauma and multiple secondary losses experienced by bereaved parents. This book builds on empirical and qualitative research and gives examples of what helps and what hinders bereaved parents as their grief and loss evolve.
  • When a Baby Dies:  Answers to Comfort Grieving Parents
    Nash, R
    1999
    For parents seeking solace for their grief, When a Baby Dies offers insights that are rich in hope and grounded solidly in Scripture.
  • When the Bough Breaks
    Bernstein, Judith
    1998
    A breakthrough concept of mourning, documenting the process of evolution from initial grief to an altered outlook on life. Excerpts from interviews with 50 parents who lost a child from five to forty-five trace the road from utter devastation to a revised view of life, resulting in a work that is a tribute to resilience and the indomitable human spirit.
  • When Goodbye is Forever
    Branblett, John
    1991
    John and Mairi Bramblett’s youngest child, two-year-old Christopher, died in an accident, leaving them and their three older children devastated by shock and grief. Four months later, John began writing this deeply moving and honest story of how he and his family coped with the nearly unbearable pain of losing their son.
  • The Worst Loss
    Rosof, Barbara
    1995

    The death of a child is like no other loss. The Worst Loss will help families who have experienced this to know what they are facing, understand what they are feeling, and appreciate their own needs and timetables.

Bereaved Children

  • After Charlotte’s Mom Died
    Spelman, Cornelia
    1996

    Because her mom’s death causes six-year-old Charlotte to feel sad, mad, and scared, she and her dad visit a therapist who helps them acknowledge and express their feelings.
  • Breaking the Silence: A Guide to Helping Children with Complicated Grief – Suicide, Homicide, AIDS, Violence and Abuse
    Linda Goldman
    2014
    The second edition of this bestselling book is designed for mental health professionals, educators, and the parent/caregiver, this book provides specific ideas and techniques to work with children in various areas of complicated grief. It presents words and methods to help initiate discussions of these delicate topics, as well as tools to help children understand and separate complicated grief into parts. These parts in turn can be grieved for and released one at a time.
  • Fall of Freddie the Leaf
    Buscaglia, Leo
    2002

    A warm, wonderfully wise and strikingly simple story about a leaf names Freddie. How Freddie and his companion leaves change with the passing seasons, finally falling to the ground with winter’s snow, is an inspiring allegory illustrating the delicate balance between life and death.
  • Healing Your Grieving Heart for Kids: 100 Practical Ideas
    Alan D. Wolfelt
    2001
  • Henry and Harriet
    MacArthur, Henriette
  • Great Answers to Difficult Questions about Death
    Linda Goldman
    2009
    Death is never an easy subject for discussion and adults often struggle to find the right words when talking about it with children. This book explores children’s thoughts and feelings on the subject of death and provides parents and other caring adults with guidance on how to respond to difficult questions.
  • Lighthouse: A Story of Remembrance
    Robert Munsch
    2006
    Young Sarah can’t sleep following her grandpa’s funeral, so she wakes up her dad in the middle of the night. He agrees to take her where Grandpa used to take him as a boy – the lighthouse. On the way there, Sarah and her dad drink coffee and eat donuts – just as Grandpa would have liked. When they climb to the top of the lighthouse, Sarah throws a flower out to sea in her grandpa’s memory.
  • Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs
    Tomie dePaola
    2000
    Tommy is four years old, and he loves visiting the home of his grandmother, Nana Downstairs, and his great-grandmother, Nana Upstairs. But one day Tommy’s mother tells him Nana Upstairs won’t be there anymore, and Tommy must struggle with saying good-bye to someone he loves. Updated with new, full-color illustrations, this classic story will continue to win the hearts of readers of all ages.
  • Never too Young to Know
    Phyllis Rolfe Silverman
    2011
    In spite of society’s wish to protect and insulate children from death, the experience of loss is unavoidable and there is surprisingly little guidance on how to help children cope with grief and bereavement. Never Too Young to Know: Death in Children’s Lives is the first book to bring
    together diverse fields of study, offering a practical as well as multifaceted theoretical approach to how children cope with death.
  • On the Wings of a Butterfly:  A Story About Life and Death
    Maple, M.
    1992

    Beautiful watercolor illustrations accompany this poignant story about the friendship between a young girl dying of cancer and a caterpillar preparing to become a monarch butterfly. Butterfly opens the door for talking about death, dying, and the wonder of life.
  • Our Special Garden:  Understanding Cremation: Learning to Cope with Loss and Transition
    Carney, Karen L.
    1997

    A gentle, thoughtful and reassuring explanation of death and cremation. It tells the true story of the author’s grandfather, who had asked that his body be cremated and placed in the garden. It explains the cremation process, describes what ashes look like, and offers suggestions for finding a special place for our loved ones.
  • Raising Our Children to be Resilient
    Linda Goldman
    2004
    In this timely and much-needed book, Linda Goldman addresses the many frightening events that impact our children by providing the reader with a seamless mixture of theory and practice garnered from her extensive experience in the field. Raising Our Children to Be Resilient includes trauma resolution techniques and case studies, discussions of the respective roles played by parents, teachers and the larger community as well as additional resources for those in a position to help children who have been traumatized. The goal of Raising Our Children to Be Resilient is exactly what its title promises: to help children through their pain and confusion and guide them into a flexible and compassionate adulthood.
  • Saying Goodbye to Daddy
    Vigna, Judith
    1991
    Frightened, lonely, and angry after her father is killed in a car accident, Clare is helped through the grieving process by her mother and grandfather.
  • Talking About Death: A Dialogue Between Parent and Child
    Grollman, Earl
    2011

    Why do people die? How do you explain the loss of a loved one to a child? This book is a compassionate guide for adults and children to read together, featuring a read-along story and answers to questions children ask about death.
  • What happens when a loved one dies? Our first talk about death
    Jillian Roberts
    2016
    Whether children are experiencing grief and loss for the first time or simply curious, it can be difficult to know how to talk to them about death. Using questions posed in a child’s voice and answers that start simply and become more in-depth, this book allows adults to guide the conversation to a natural and reassuring conclusion. Additional questions at the back of the book allow for further discussion.
    Child psychologist Dr. Jillian Roberts designed the Just Enough series to empower parents/caregivers to start conversations with young ones about difficult or challenging subject matter.
  • When Someone Very Special Dies: Children Can Learn to Cope with Grief
    Marge Heegaard
    1996
    This workbook gives children brief information with useful images. Can be used by parents, school counselors and bereavement group leaders. There are opportunities provided for expressive drawings and writings.
  • When Dinosaurs Die
    Krasky, Brown L.M.
    1998

    The authors explain in simple language the feelings people may have regarding the death of a loved one and the ways to honor the memory of someone who has died.
  • When Something Terrible Happens
    Marge Heegaard
    1996
    Creates ways for children to explore the fright, confusion, and insecurity caused by traumatic events in their lives.

Bereaved Children: Interactive Workbooks

  • Healing Your Grieving Heart for Kids
    Wolfelt, Alan
    2001

    With sensitivity and insight, this series offers suggestions for healing activities that can help survivors learn to express their grief and mourn naturally. Acknowledging that death is a painful, ongoing part of life, they explain how people need to slow down, turn inward, embrace their feelings of loss, and seek and accept support when a loved one dies.
  • Help Me Say Goodbye
    Silverman, Janis
    1999

    An art therapy and activity book for children coping with death. Sensitive exercises address all the questions children may have during this emotional and troubling crisis. Children are encouraged to express in pictures what they are often incapable of expressing in words.
  • My Grieving Journey Book
    Shavatt, Donna
    2001

    Provides information, advice, and activities to help young people deal with the death of someone they love.
  • When Someone Very Special Dies
    Heegard, Marge
    1996
    A practical format for allowing children to understand the concept of death and develop coping skills for life.
  • Bereaved Children: Books for Adults
    • Bereaved Children and Teens
      Grollman, Earl
      1996
      Bringing together fourteen experts from across the United States and Canada,.  A comprehensive guide to helping children and adolescents cope with the emotional, religious, social, and physical consequences of a loved one’s death. The result is an indispensable reference for parents, teachers, counselors, health-care professionals, and clergy.
    • Healing Children’s Grief
      Hyslop Christ, Grace
      2009

      Grace Christ relates the powerfully moving stories of eighty-eight families and their 157 children (ages 3 to 17) who participated in a parent-guidance intervention through the terminal illness and death of one of the parents from cancer. Using extensive case examples throughout, Healing Children’s Grief: Surviving a Parent’s Death from Cancer provides a detailed examination of how children and adolescents cope with this loss. Covering a critical 20 month period, from6 months before to 14 months after the death of a parent, Christ reports that a majority of the children successfully adapted to the loss during the subsequent months after the death.

    Bereaved Teens

    • All Rivers Flow to the Sea
      McGhee, Alison
      2005
      When a car accident leaves a teenage girl in a coma, her surviving sister struggles with grief and guilt as she faces the inevitability of moving on — and letting go.
    • Straight Talk About Death for Teenagers:  How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love
      Grollman, Earl
      1993

      If you are a teenager whose friend or relative has died, this book was written for you. Earl A. Grollman, the award-winning author of Living When a Loved One Has Died, explains what to expect when you lose someone you love.
    • Teenagers Face to Face with Bereavement
      Gravelle, Karen
      2000
    • The Grieving Teen: A Guide for Teenagers and Their Friends
      Alan D Wolfelt, PhD
      2000
      In this unique and compassionate guide, renowned grief counselor Helen Fitzgerald turns her attention to the special needs of adolescents struggling with loss and gives teens the tools they need to work through their pain and grief.
    • When a Friend Dies
      Marilyn Gootman
      2005
      The death of a friend is a wrenching event for anyone at any age. Teenagers especially need help coping with this painful loss. This sensitive book answers questions grieving teens often have, like “How should I be acting?” “Is it wrong to go to parties and have fun?” and “What if I can’t handle my grief on my own?”
      The advice is gentle, non-preachy, and compassionate; the author has seen her own children suffer from the death of a friend, and she knows what teens go through. The revised edition includes new quotes from teens, new resources, and new insights into losing a friend through violence. Also recommended for parents and teachers of teens who have experienced a painful loss.
    • You Are Not Alone: Teens talk about life after the loss of a parent
      Lynne Hughes
      2005
      Grade 7 Up–Hughes, the founder of Comfort Zone Camp for grieving kids, believes that sharing experiences about losing a parent begins the healing process. Her purpose in writing the book is to let teens know that they don’t have to feel isolated–there is help available for them. The book opens with the author’s story of losing both of her parents by the age of 12 and living with an unloving stepmother. Fourteen chapters lead readers through the process of grieving and dealing with life without a parent. Quotes from former campers are interspersed throughout the book, giving insight into a variety of ways young people have dealt with loss. (Review from School Library Journal).

    Bereaved Teens: Interactive Workbooks

    • Death & Dying
      Carol Antoinette
      2004
      Of all the losses imaginable, death is the most final and often the hardest to bear. Many people who suffer this loss for the first time are frightened by their grief and may try to avoid it, but grieving is a necessary part of starting to feel better. In this “guidebook” for grieving, child psychologist Carol Antoinette Peacock describes simple, specific actions that help to ease the pain. Readers will also find ideas for expressing their feelings and keeping the memories alive, paving the way to a new life.
    • Healing Your Grieving Heart for Teens
      Wolfelt, Alan
      2001
      With sensitivity and insight, this series offers suggestions for healing activities that can help survivors learn to express their grief and mourn naturally. Acknowledging that death is a painful, ongoing part of life, they explain how people need to slow down, turn inward, embrace their feelings of loss, and seek and accept support when a loved one dies. Each book, geared for mourning adults, teens, or children, provides ideas and action-oriented tips that teach the basic principles of grief and healing.
    • A Teen’s Simple Guide to Grief
      Cunningham, Alexis
      2001
      This book offers teenagers a look into the challenges facing them after the death of a significant person in their life. It’s intention is to be compassionate and hones about the depression, anger, sadness and confusion that follow loss, and it offers poignant and simple suggestions to help young adults process and heal a wounded heart.

    Support for a Child When a Parent is Sick

    • As Big as it Gets: Supporting a Child when a Parent is Seriously Ill
      Julie A. Stokes, Diana Crossley, Di Stubbs
      2007
      This booklet provides a range of ideas for parents and carers so that they feel able to involve their children in what is happening. The book also includes some suggestions about what parents might say to children and how to offer support.

    Loss of a Parent - All Ages

    • The Girls in the Front Row: exploring the impact of losing a mother young
      Linda Gayle Ross
      2013

      Explores the experiences of fourteen women, aged sixteen to ninety, who have all lost their mother at a very young age. They share their powerful and  inspirational stories, discussing the impact that this loss has had on their lives.

    Loss of a Sibling

    • Healing the Adult Sibling’s Grieving Heart
      Alan D. Wolfelt PhD
      2008
      Compassionate and heartfelt, this collection offers 100 practical ideas to help understand and accept the passing of a sibling in order to practice self-healing. The principles of grief and mourning are clearly defined, accompanied by action-oriented tips for embracing bereavement. Whether a sibling has died as a young or older adult or the death was sudden or anticipated, this resource provides a healthy approach to dealing with the aftermath.
    • Surviving the Death of a Sibling: Living Through Grief When an Adult Brother or Sister Dies
      T.J. Wray
      2003
      Based on the author’s own experiences, as well as those of many others, Surviving the Death of a Sibling helps adults who have lost a brother or sister to realize that they are not alone in their struggle. Just as important, it teaches them to understand the unique stages of their grieving process, offering practical and prescriptive advice for dealing with each stage.

    Loss of a Spouse

    • Being a Widow
      Caine, Lynne
      1990

      Practical advice and guidance to women lost in the loneliness and stress of widowhood. Caine writes candidly about the universal issues of grief, the impact of death, depression, legal and financial problems, re-emerging sexuality, dreams, and more.
    • Finding Your Way After Your Spouse Dies
      Felber, Marta
      2000

      Marta Felber offers just such a voice-caring, hopeful, always pointing ahead to a tomorrow that will be a little easier than today. Having experienced her own spouse’s death, Felber is never glib or simplistic. She knows the grief her readers are feeling and she encourages them to give it full expression. At the same time, she offers sound, practical suggestions on how to navigate difficult days.
    • Healing a Spouse’s Grieving Heart: 100 Practical Ideas After Your Husband or Wife Dies
      Alan Wolfet
      2003
      Offers 100 practical, here-and-now suggestions for helping widowers or widows mourn well so they can go on to live well and love well again. Whether your spouse died recently or long ago, you will find comfort and healing in this compassionate book.
      I Can’t Stop Crying
      Martin & Ferris
      2013

      Looks at grieving as a painful but necessary process. The authors emphasize the importance of giving permission to grieve and suggest steps for rebuiliding life without the one who is gone. They also look at how such a loss affects relationships with family and friends, as well as lifestyle, work habits, and hopes for the future.
    • Surviving the Death of your Spouse
      Levinson, Deborah
      2004

      A therapist specializing in issues surrounding grief and loss introduces a unique three-stage adjustment model for men and women facing the challenges, healing the trauma, and rebuilding their lives after the death of a spouse.
    • The Year of Magical Thinking
      Joan Didion
      2007
      From one of America’s iconic writers, a stunning book of electric honesty and passion. Joan Didion explores an intensely personal yet universal experience: a portrait of a marriage–and a life, in good times and bad–that will speak to anyone who has ever loved a husband or wife or child.
    • Widower:  When Men are Left Alone
      Campbell & Silverman
      1996
      A journalist and a social worker explore the grief process as men experience it. The book contains the oral histories of twenty men, ranging in age from 30 to 94, who have lost their wives to a range of causes including cancer, alcohol, murder, and suicide. Taken together, the stories guide the reader through the journey of widowhood.
    • Widows Journey:  A Return to the Loving Self
      Rose, Xenia
      1991

      Universalizes the experience of a spouse’s bereavement in this self-help book. When her 20-year marriage was ended by death, Rose had difficulty in rediscovering her own identity. Following her experience in a support group of similarly mourning men and women, she resumed her work as a psychotherapist. Offers advice and practical suggestions to “make widowhood a little more bearable.”
    • Widow to Widow: Thoughtful, Practical Ideas for Rebuilding Your Life
      Genevieve Davis Ginsburg
      2004
      In this remarkably useful guide, widow, author, and therapist Genevieve Davis Ginsburg offers fellow widows-as well as their family and friends-sage advice for coping with the loss of a husband. From learning to travel and eat alone to creating new routines to surviving the holidays and anniversaries that reopen emotional wounds, Widow to Widow walks readers through the challenges of widowhood and encourages them on their path to building a new life.
    • Wife After Death
      Anderson, M.
      1993

      “Stories of seven women who have faced grief and have grown through the bereavement process. Ms. Anderson’s comments are valuable analyses of these stories and provide clues which other widows will want to use as they walk through this unfamiliar territory.” – Dr. John Morgan, Coordinator, Centre for Education about Death and Bereavement, King’s College, London, Canada.

    Men's Grief

    • Swallowed by a Snake 
      Golden, Tom
      2010

      A book for men and women about the masculine side of healing from loss. Discover new and powerful ways to heal. How the genders differ in their healing. Greater understanding between partners.
    • When a Man Faces Grief /  When a Man You Know is Grieving
      Golden, T.
      2010
      Learn about the distinctive way grief is sometimes expressed and dealt with when a more “masculine” mode is employed (which may happen with either gender, by the way). “When a Man Faces Grief: 12 Practical Ideas to Help You Heal from Loss” is written in a concise format for the griever himself. “A Man You Know Is Grieving: 12 Ideas to Help Him Heal from loss” is written for those who wish to understand, validate, and support the more masculine mode of grief.
    • When Men Grieve:  Why Men Grieve Differently and How You Can Help Levang, E.
      1998

      Psychologist Elizabeth Levang, author of Remembering with Love, explains the special ways that men grieve so those who love them can better understand what they’re going through.

    Inspirational

    • A Time to Grieve: Meditations for Healing After the Death of a Loved One
      Staudacher, C
      1994

      A collection of truly comforting, down-to-earth thoughts and meditations, including the authentic voices of survivors.  For anyone grieving the loss of a loved one.
    • In the Midst of Winter
      Moffat, M
      1992
      Death silences not only those it takes, but those it leaves behind: All too typically we can neither express our grief nor express sympathy for the bereaved. In his sensitive collection, toss finds a voice — or several voices — in the poetry, fiction, letters, and diaries of the world’s great writers. Here are James Agee, recording the shock of his father’s death; William Shakespeare, making poetry of Cleopatra’s grief; the Biblical wisdom of The Book of Lamentations; the psychological acuity of Marcel Proust. Here are mourners from classical Rome to eleventh-century China, from the Paiute Indians to present-day Ireland. Arranged in sections that correspond to the stages of mourning, In the Midst of Winter is a collection whose breadth and resonance make it invaluable and utterly unique.
    • The Prophet
      Kahlil Gibran
      1923
      Kahlil Gibran’s masterpiece, The Prophet, is one of the most beloved classics of our time. Published in 1923, it has been translated into more than twenty languages, and the American editions alone have sold more than nine million copies.

      A collection of poetic essays that are philosophical, spiritual, and, above all, inspirational. Gibran’s musings are divided into twenty-eight chapters covering such sprawling topics as love, marriage, children, giving, eating and drinking, work, joy and sorrow, housing, clothes, buying and selling, crime and punishment, laws, freedom, reason and passion, pain, self-knowledge, teaching, friendship, talking, time, good and evil, prayer, pleasure, beauty, religion, and death.
    • Safe Passage: Words to Help the Grieving
      Molly Fumia
      2012
      The loss of a loved one is one of the most traumatic experiences we will ever face. This wise and profound book of reflections for the grieving offers a compassionate companion for those who have lost a loved one. Each page offers new words for contemplation, and the book can be read cover to cover or pages chosen at random to find inspiration to make it through another day.Safe Passage guides the reader through the grief process–from the blackest night to the slow, gentle dawn of acceptance, unexpected wisdom, and new possibilities

    Helping Professionals

    • Creating Meaningful Funeral CeremoniesA Guide for Caregivers
      Wolfelt, A
      2003
      Written in response to the current trend to deritualize death and funeral ceremonies, this book explores the ways in which caregivers and clergy can create heartfelt ceremonies that help the bereaved begin to heal. Explaining the purposes behind rituals, it reviews the many ways these have changed over the years and argues for a return to authentic, personalized, and meaningful funeral ceremonies. The qualities in caregivers that make them effective funeral planners are examined, and practical ideas for creating authentic, personalized, and meaningful funeral ceremonies are provided. Trends toward the prevalence of cremation are discussed, as are trends away from viewing and spending time with the body of the deceased.
    • Death and the Classroom:  A Teachers Guide to Assist Grieving Students Cassini, K
      1989
    • Funerals Without God:  A Practical Guide to Non Religious Funerals  Wilson, J.
      1990
      The main purpose of this booklet is twofold: to help Humanists who are thinking of becoming officiants on a regular basis; and to help families and friends who are faced with the need to organize a ceremony themselves at short notice. A third group who may find parts of it useful are funeral directors coping with funerals where there is no officiant and the family has no wish to play an active role.
    • In Memoriam:  A Practical Guide to Planning a Memorial Service
      Bennett, A
      1997
      This practical, innovative guide takes friends and family through every step of planning a funeral or memorial service. It also offers detailed advice on how to make any service truly personal–from writing tributes and choosing appropriate music to selecting speakers, organizing the time and place, arranging flowers, and much more.

    Traumatic Loss


    • Healing After the Suicide of a Loved One
      Smolin & Guinan
      1993
      Too often people suffering the aftermath of a suicide suffer alone. As the survivor of a person who has ended his or her own life, you are left a painful legacy — and not one that you chose. Healing After the Suicide of a Loved One will help you take the first steps toward healing. While each individual becomes a suicide survivor in his or her own way, there are predictable phases of pain that most survivors experience sooner or later, from the grief and depression of mourning to guilt, rage, and despair over what you have lost.
    • No Time For Goodbyes
      Lord, Janice
      2006
    • Recovering for the Loss of a Loved One to AIDS
      Donnelly, K
      2001
      Real voices speak from the heart in a book that offers blessed comfort and practical help for those left behind after the death of a loved one to AIDS. Expert on grief Katherine Fair Donnelly, who has suffered many personal losses, has also gained wisdom and strategies from hundreds of AIDS survivors who share their intimate and true stories. They tell how they handled the many challenges they faced. This book offers immediate help, both spiritual and practical. Survivors will learn that others have experienced such hurt and have found pathways to recovering.
    • Suicide Survivors:  A Guide for Those Left Behind 
      Wrobleske, A
      1994
    • Surviving When Someone You Loved Was Murdered
      Redmond, L.
      1989
    • Who Lives Happily Ever After?  For Families Whose Child Has Died Violently
      Turnbull, S
      1990
    • Aftershock:  Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide
      Cox, D
      2003

      Aftershock is a recovery book that will provide encouragement and support for survivors. Examining the complex emotions involved in grieving a suicide death, readers will come to realize they are not alone in their grief and will not be alone in their healing.