Book Recommendations for Explaining Loss of a Sibling (Miscarriage or Pregnancy Loss) to A Child

Recommended Books  for Explaining Loss of a Sibling (Miscarriage or Pregnancy Loss) to A Child


A Rainbow Baby Story: The Rainbow After the Storm: Volume 2 (Explain It To Me!) (Picture Book) by   Crystal A Falk and Kim S Roman

A helpful book for children, aged 2 to 6 years old, A Rainbow Baby Story gently enables parents to explain what happened to their sibling who was due to be born so soon.

"A rainbow baby is a baby who is born after the mother has experienced a miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss. The thought is, the loss is like a storm and the baby who follows is like the rainbow. After a storm, a rainbow filled with hope may appear. Although there are still dark clouds above, there is hope and joy that follows the storm."

The story is about Baby Bird and his family. They live in a nest high in a tree. One day while his mother is out looking for food, a fierce storm rolls through. Alone and scared, his mother soon returns to the nest and comforts him. This seems the perfect time for her to tell the story of the little sister he never met and a beautiful hope that sometimes follows a storm.

An honest and gentle account of loss, this book is perfect to help young children embrace the loss and process it. 

We Were Gonna Have a Baby, But We Had an Angel Instead (Picture Book ) by Pat Schwiebert

An excellent coping tool for young children, the book starts off with a small boy looking into an empty bassinet where his newborn sibling was meant to sleep.

The picture book initially validates the boy's feelings that all siblings have as they await the birth of their new brother or sister, through reminding us how much the boy was looked forward to having a sibling, and had already drummed up scenarios of the two of them playing together and building a fort. 

"But something happened," he reports, his trusty basset hound mirroring his sad, dejected expression. "The baby died. Our baby is not going to live with us."

With great sensitivity, Schwiebert, acknowledges the complicated feelings of the young reader from sadness and fear, whilst introducing the baby as an angel through a beautiful illustration of the baby with the halo.

The author has also thoughtfully included some tools and techniques for parents at the end on helping children grieve and understand loss.


The Invisible String (Picture Book) by Patrice Karst

Not directly linked to miscarriage or stillbirth, The Invisible String is a really well-thought out book on helping little children cope with any kind of loss, grief or separation anxiety. 

In the book, the mother introduces 'the invisible string' through which the whole family is connected. You can't see it but it's still there. An invisible string made of love, that is not visible to the naked eye but one that feel with your heart as you are always connected to your loved ones through this.

This heart-warming and gorgeous book opens up many questions about love, family and lost relationships that we can still treasure.

A must-read, its been advocated by therapists, educators and social workers everywhere. Highly recommended.


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You might also find it helpful to explore these feelings in a bibliotherapy session or learn some bibliotherapy techniques to help you process these feelings by completing our online Bibliotherapy, Literature and Mental Health course, Children's Bibliotherapy Skills Online Course or our book Bibliotherapy: The Healing Power of Reading.

A big hello and thank you for reading! Passionate about literature, psychology, and life I launched Book Therapy as an alternative form of therapy using the power of literature. I train mental health professionals, librarians, teachers as well as readers on using bibliotherapy in their own work through our online Bibliotherapy, Literature and Mental Health course. We also curate reading lists/personalised book prescriptions for clients based on their individual needs. This is our signature personalised reading service.

You can also check out Book Therapy’s other free reading lists and A- Z of book prescriptions (covering both fiction and non-fiction). These suggest books based on your existing life situation (e.g. anxiety, job change, relationship heartache) as well as interests (e.g memoir, historical fiction, non-fiction, crime etc). There’s also a Children’s A — Z of Book Prescriptions. Feel free to check out the blog for more literary gems. There’s also a post on my personal story of how I entered the world of bibliotherapy and book curation.

In this role, I have had the opportunity to publish two books called Bibliotherapy: The Healing Power of Reading and The Happiness Mindset, and write various literary essays and pieces for newspapers and magazines. I have undertaken bibliotherapy workshops for The United Nations, various libraries in New York and corporate organisations in the UK and US. My book recommendations have featured in the Guardian, Marie Claire, NBC News, Asian Voice, New York Observer, Sydney Telegraph and various other publications. If you are a parent you might enjoy a podcast I’ve recorded with speech and language therapist Sunita Shah on Raising A Reader & Storyteller. And if you’d like to connect, email me at or

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