Books to read when you are grieving

Books to read when you are grieving

We know that when a young person is grieving, it can be helpful to read books that they can relate to. Whether it is a help-style book that gives you advice and guidance on how to manage your grief or a novel that tells the story of a character in a similar situation to yours, there are a number of books out there that could be useful.

The Grieving Teen: A Guide for Teenagers and their Friends (Helen Fitzgerald)

In this unique and compassionate guide, renowned grief counsellor Helen Fitzgerald turns her attention to the special needs of adolescents struggling with loss and gives them the tools they need to work through their pain and grief.

When a Friend Dies: A book for Teens about Grieving and Healing (Marilyn E Gotman)

This thoughtful and helpful book answers questions about grieving that teenagers often have, like ‘How should I be acting?’ and ‘Is it wrong to go to parties and have fun?’

Teacher’s Dead (Benjamin Zephaniah)

Benjamin Zephaniah has chosen a topical and hard-hitting subject and he deals with it in his own uniquely empathetic and edgy way.


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Michael Rosen’s Sad book (Michael Rosen)

This book has won several awards for its honest and sensitive look at sadness, how it feels, and what to do to cope with the feelings.

The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud (Ben Sherwood)

This book tells the story of a young man who narrowly survives a terrible car wreck that kills his little brother.

The Wish List (Eoin Colfer)

Meg Finn is in trouble, unearthly trouble. Cast out of her own home by her stepfather after her mother’s death, Meg is a wanderer, a troublemaker.

On Eagles Wings (Sue Mayfield)

Tony’s mother is dying. There’s nothing he can do about it and he can’t always put a brave face on things.


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Up On Cloud Nine (Anne Fine)

Strolly has always been so alive, so inspiring, taking risks, hiding nothing, notorious for being the school’s most imaginative liar. But now he’s lying in a hospital bed and Ian, his best friend who’s as close as a brother, is watching, waiting and remembering.

Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers: How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love (Earl A. Grollman)

This book was written after the author spoke to thousands of teenagers and found they often felt forgotten after someone has died. It covers feelings, different types of death and the future, reassuring you that grief is normal.

The Lost Boys’ Appreciation Society (Alan Gibbons)

Teenage life is difficult enough for Gary and John, but when their Mum dies in a car accident, things get steadily worse. John struggles to keep the peace as Gary goes off the rails. This book explores relationships and how different people react to life events.

A Fault in our Stars (John Green)

This is a moving and funny book about a teenage girl, Hazel, who has been diagnosed with lung cancer and attends a cancer support group where she meets Augustus. The couple embark on a rollercoaster of emotions, while searching for the author of their favourite book.


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Useful links for grieving young people

How to look after your mental health when grieving