Books about Families of all different stripes


Celebrating All Families

E Anholt – Catherine and Laurence Anholt’s Big Book of Families.
Poems, letters, and illustrations celebrate the entire family, including grandmothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers.

E Hoberman – All Kinds of Families.
Rhyming text and illustrations explore the ways people, animals, and even objects can form families.

E Hoffman -- The Great Big Book of Families.
This fun and fascinating treasury features all kinds of families and their lives together.

E Parr – The Family Book.
Represents a variety of families, some big and some small, some with only one parent and some with two moms or dads, some quiet and some noisy, but all alike in some ways and special no matter what.

E Pellegrini -- Families are Different.
An adopted Korean girl discovers that her classmates have different types of families.

E Simon – All Families are Special.
Students in Mrs. Mack's class describe their families--big or small, living together or apart, with two moms or none--and learn why every family is special and important.

J 306.85/Hau – Celebrating Families.
Presents brief descriptions of many different kinds of families, both traditional and non-traditional.

J 306.85/Kuk – Families.
Children from diverse families share thoughts about their families and photographs.



E Bunting – Jin Woo.
Davey is dubious about having a new adopted brother from Korea, but when he finds out that his parents still love him, he decides that having a baby brother will be fine.

E Carlson – My Family is Forever.
A young girl recounts how she came to be part of an adoptive family.

E Caseley – Sisters.
When Melissa's parents adopt Kika from another country, the two girls learn about being sisters.

E Curtis – Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born.
A young girl asks her parents to tell her again the cherished family story of her birth and adoption.

E Fowler – When Joel Comes Home.
A little girl describes all the things she and her parents are planning to welcome home friends and their newly-adopted son.

E Gray – Our Twitchy.
A little bunny named Twitchy discovers that there's something special about his family: he was adopted by a cow and a horse.

E Keller – Horace.
Horace, an adopted child, realizes that being part of a family depends on how you feel and not how you look.

E Rosenberg – We Wanted You.
Parents tell how they waited and prepared for the child that they wanted so much.

E Sugarman – Rebecca’s Journey Home.
Mr. and Mrs. Stein and their young sons Gabe and Jacob adopt a baby girl from Vietnam.

E Young – My Mei Mei.
Antonia gets her wish when her parents return to China to bring home a Mei Mei, or younger sister, for her.

J 362.734/Gir – We Adopted You, Benjamin Koo.
Nine-year-old Benjamin Koo Andrews, adopted from Korea as an infant, describes what it's like to grow up adopted from another country.

J 362.734/McC – Happy Adoption Day.
Parents celebrate the day on which they adopted their child and continue to reassure the new addition to their family that it is wanted, loved, and very special.

J 362.734/Rog – Adoption.
Discusses what it means to be part of a family and examines some feelings that adopted children may have.

J 362.734/Say – Allison.
When Allison realizes that she looks more like her favorite doll than like her parents, she comes to terms with this unwelcome discovery through the help of a stray cat.

Parent Shelf, J 306.85/Kro – Beginnings: How Families Come to Be.
Parents and children discuss how their families came to be, covering birth families, adoptive families, two-parent families, and single-parent families.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Blo – A Family for Jamie: An Adoption Story.
Although Dan and Molly can make cookies and birdhouses, they cannot make a baby, so they adopt Jamie and share with him their life and love.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Col – How I Was Adopted: Samantha’s Story.
A young girl tells the story of how she came to be her parents' child through adoption.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Cos – Finding Joy.
Shu-li, an infant girl who had to be sent away by her family in China, is adopted by an American family and renamed Joy.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Heo – Ten Days and Nine Nights: An Adoption Story.
A young girl eagerly awaits the arrival of her newly-adopted sister from Korea, while her whole family prepares.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Kat – Over the Moon: An Adoption Tale.
A loving couple dream of a baby born far away and know that this is the baby they have been waiting to adopt.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Lea – Megan’s Birthday Tree: A Story About Open Adoption.
Every year on Megan's birthday, her birth mother, Kendra, sends a picture of the tree she planted the day Megan was born, so when Kendra decides to get married and move to a new house, Megan worries that she will be forgotten.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Lew -- Every Year on Your Birthday.
Each year on the birthday of her adopted Chinese daughter, a mother recalls the moments they have shared, from the first toy to the friends left behind in China.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Lew – I Love You Like Crazy Cakes.
A woman describes how she went to China to adopt a special baby girl. Based on the author's own experiences.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Lif – Tell Me a Real Adoption Story.
A parent tells an adopted child about coming to the family.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/McM – Just Add One Chinese Sister.
Claire and her mother are working together on a scrapbook as they relive their first days and hours together following Claire's arrival from her birth home in China.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Oki – The White Swan Express: A Story About Adoption.
Across North America, people in four different homes prepare for a special trip to China, while four baby girls in China await their new adoptive parents.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Par - We Belong Together: A Book About Adoption and Families.
Explores the ways that people can choose to come together to make a family, and approaches this challenging subject with humor and sensitivity through bold and colorful illustrations.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Pea – Mommy Far, Mommy Near: An Adoption Story.
Elizabeth, who was born in China, describes the family who has adopted her and tries to sort out her feelings for her unknown mother.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Xin – Motherbridge of Love.
A poem to explain birth parents and adoptive parents to an adopted child.



J 306.89/Mur – Divorce and Separation.
Includes the following chapters:  Separation and divorce : why does it happen? -- Separation -- Getting divorced -- Living apart -- Is it my fault? -- Do my parents still love me? -- How does it feel when your parents divorce? -- Sadness and anger -- Feeling all alone -- Getting help -- Accepting change -- New family members -- New beginnings -- Tips to get through your parents' separation or divorce.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Ada – On the Day His Daddy Left.
On the day his father moves out of the house, Danny's teacher, friends, and family reassure him that his parents' divorce is not his fault.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Aub – There for You.
Rhyming text explores the issue of divorce.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Bro – Dinosaurs Divorce.
Text and illustrations of dinosaur characters introduce aspects of divorce such as its causes and effects, living with a single parent, spending holidays in two separate households, and adjusting to a stepparent.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Bun – The Days of Summer.
As summer ends and they get ready to go back to school, two young girls try to deal with the news that the grandparents they love are getting a divorce.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Coc – My Parents are Divorced, My Elbows Have Nicknames, and Other Facts about Me.
While describing his not-so-weird life with his divorced parents, a young boy also describes some other things about himself that could be considered weird.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Col – My Parents’ Divorce.
Discusses why divorce happens, how to cope with it, and how to deal with difficult feelings as well as friends whose parents are divorced.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Gir – At Daddy’s on Saturdays.
Although her parents' divorce causes her to feel anger, concern, and sadness, Katie discovers that she can keep a loving relationship with her father even though he lives apart from her.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Hig – Weekends with Dad: What to Expect When Your Parents Divorce.
Gender neutral animal characters and inviting illustrations gently explore difficult situations, allowing children going through tough times to find comfort in characters with whom they can relate. Sidebars offer important and empowering coping tips.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Lan – It’s Not Your Fault, Koko Bear.
KoKo Bear learns what divorce means, how to deal with changes, how to recognize and deal with feelings, and that divorce is not KoKo's fault. Each page includes tips for parents.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Lev – Was It the Chocolate Pudding? A Story for Little Kids about Divorce.
A young narrator living with his single father and brother explains divorce from a kid's point-of-view. Special emphasis is placed on the fact that divorce is not the child's fault, that it is a grown-up problem.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Moo – When My Parents Forgot How to be Friends.
A girl describes her feelings about her family problems.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Ran -- I Don't Want to Talk About It.
After reluctantly talking with her parents about their upcoming divorce, a young girl discovers that there will be some big changes but that their love for her will remain the same. Includes an afterword for parents on helping children through such a change.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Rog – Divorce.
In his gentle, reassuring tone, Fred Rogers explains that amidst the upsetting changes caused by divorce, the most important thing is for children to know that all of their feelings are real and acceptable, whatever they might be.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Spe -- Mama and Daddy Bear’s Divorce.
Dinah Bear feels sad and scared when her parents say they are going to divorce.


Foster Families

E Polacco – Welcome Comfort.
Welcome Comfort, a lonely foster child, is assured by his friend the school custodian that there is a Santa Claus, but he does not discover the truth until one wondrous and surprising Christmas Eve.

J 362.733/Mac – Mama One, Mama Two.
A young child lives with a foster family until her own mother is well enough to care for her.

J 362.734/Ban – A Forever Family.
Eight-year-old Jennifer Jordan-Wong describes her adoption by a family after four years of living as a foster child with many different families.


Gay and Lesbian Parents and Relatives

E Polacco – In Our Mothers’ House.
Three young children experience the joys and challenges of being raised by two mothers.

E Richardson – And Tango Makes Three
At New York City's Central Park Zoo, two male penguins fall in love and start a family by taking turns sitting on an abandoned egg until it hatches.

J 306.874 – Zack’s Story.
 An eleven-year-old boy describes life as part of a family made up of himself, his mother and her lesbian partner.

Parent Shelf, J 306.8/Wil – Daddy’s Roommate.
A young boy discusses his divorced father's new living situation, in which the father and his gay roommate share eating, doing chores, playing, loving, and living.

Parent Shelf, J 306.84/Bra – Uncle Bobby’s Wedding.
Chloë is jealous and sad when her favorite uncle announces that he will be getting married, but as she gets to know Jamie better and becomes involved in planning the wedding, she discovers that she will always be special to Uncle Bobby--and to Uncle Jamie, too.

Parent Shelf, J 306.85/Gar – Molly’s Family.
When Molly draws a picture of her family for Open School Night, one of her classmates makes her feel bad because he says she cannot have a mommy and a mama.

Parent Shelf, J 306.85/New – Heather Has Two Mommies.
When Heather goes to playgroup, at first she feels bad because she has two mothers and no father, but then she learns that there are lots of different kinds of families and the most important thing is that all the people love each other.

Parent Shelf, J 306/85/Oel -- A Tale of Two Daddies.
A little boy named Lincoln talks with a little girl who has two dads.

Parent Shelf, J 306/85/Oel -- A Tale of Two Mommies.
A young boy describes to two other children how his two mommies help him with all his needs.


Parents Living Apart

E Bernhard – To & Fro, Fast & Slow.
A girl who is shuttled between the homes of her divorced parents observes such opposites as "over, under," "rainy, sunny," and "full & empty."

E Coffelt – Fred Stays with Me.
A child describes how she lives sometimes with her mother and sometimes with her father, but her dog is her constant companion.

E Coy – Two Old Potatoes and Me.
After a young girl finds two old potatoes at her father's house, they plant and tend them to see if they will have new potatoes in September.

E Grindley – A New Room for William.
When William and his mother move, he is unhappy about having a new room, but he changes his mind after he gets dinosaur wallpaper and makes a new friend.

E Masurel – Two Homes.
A young boy named Alex enjoys the homes of both of his parents who live apart but love Alex very much.

E Schotter – Missing Rabbit.
As Kara divides her time between Papa's house and Mama's house, she is comforted by the presence of her toy Rabbit.

E Winthrop -- As the Crow Flies.
A second-grader describes how he feels when his father comes all the way from Delaware to Arizona to spend a week with him.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Bal – Gracie.
Gracie describes life in her two separate homes, one with her mother and one with her father.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Chr – My Mother’s House, My Father’s House.
A child describes having two different houses in which to live, "my mother's house" and "my father's house," and what it is like to travel back and forth between them.


Racially Mixed Families

E Adoff – Black is Brown is Tan.
Describes in verse a family with a brown-skinned mother, white-skinned father, two children, and their various relatives.

E Davol – Black, White, Just Right.
A girl explains how her parents are different in color, tastes in art and food, and pet preferences, and how she herself is different too but just right.

E Graham – Oscar’s Half Birthday.
To celebrate his half birthday, Oscar, his parents, and his sister go out for a picnic.

E Monk – Hope.
During a visit with her great-aunt, a young girl learns the story behind her name and learns to feel proud of her biracial heritage.

E Senisi – For My Family, Love Allie.
Allie, whose father is black and mother is white, decides to make special food as a present for her relatives when they come for a big family party.


Single-Parent Families

E Charlip – A Perfect Day.
A father and child spend perfect day together, from sunrise to nightfall.

E Schotter – Mama I’ll Give You the World.
At Walter's World of Beauty, Luisa's secret plans are underway to create a very special birthday celebration for her hard-working, single mother who is employed there as a stylist.

E Thomas – The Red Blanket.
Tells the story of a single woman who goes to China to adopt a baby.

E Williams – A Chair for My Mother.
A child, her waitress mother, and her grandmother save dimes to buy a comfortable armchair after all their furniture is lost in a fire.

Parent Shelf, J 306.89/Sma – Father’s Day Blues: What Do You Do About Father’s Day When All You Have Are Mothers?
With humor and grace, the author takes us on one child’s journey towards the realization that being part of a single parent family can still be wonderful.

Parent Shelf, J 362.734/Zis – The Best Single Mom in the World: How I was Adopted.
A girl tells how her mother decided to become a single parent and traveled overseas to adopt her and describes their happy life as a family.



E Bennett -- Dad and Pop.
A little girl celebrates her two fathers, who are very different except in one very important way.

E Boyd – Sam is My Half-Brother.
A young girl, fearful that her newborn half brother will get all the attention, is reassured of her father's love.

E Hines – When We Married Gary.
Beth still remembers the daddy who went away, although her younger sibling does not, but both of them accept Gary and call him Papa.

E Hoffman – Boundless Grace.
Grace is invited for a visit with her father and his new family in Africa.

E Hutchins – There’s Only One of Me!
A young girl describes her relationship to the various members of her family, including her stepfamily, as they all gather to celebrate her birthday.

E Schotter – Room for Rabbit.
Now that Papa is remarried, his house seems very crowded, and Kara wonders if there is still enough room there for her and her toy Rabbit.

J 306.87/Dre – My Mother’s Getting Married.
Katy is not looking forward to the changes that her mother's marriage will bring.

J 306.874/Joh – Our Stepfamily.
Includes the following chapters: What are stepfamilies? -- Stepparents -- Stepbrothers and -sisters -- Getting used to change -- Being a family -- Don't forget -- Find out more.

J 306.874/Rog – Stepfamilies.
Discusses the changes involved in becoming part of a stepfamily and ways to deal with the new situation.


Prepared by:  Nancy Tegeler, Children’s Librarian
Bedford Free Public Library
March, 2012