Experts Tell Us the Best Children’s Books About Cancer

Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplas
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This article showcases our top picks for the Best Children’s Books About Cancer. We reached out to industry leaders and experts who have contributed the suggestions within this article (they have been credited for their contributions below). We are keen to hear your feedback on all of our content and our comment section is a moderated space to express your thoughts and feelings related (or not) to this article This list is in no particular order.

Table of Contents

What Happens When Someone I Love Has Cancer? by Sara Olsher

This product was recommended by Sara Olsher from Mighty + Bright

This is a fantastic book for kids to help them understand the science of cancer and how a loved one’s diagnosis might affect the child’s day-to-day life. It doesn’t talk down to kids but isn’t scary at all. Good for all types of cancer including solid tumors and blood cancers.

What Happens When a Kid Has Cancer by Sara Olsher

This product was recommended by Sara Olsher from Mighty + Bright

This brand-new book explains the science of cancer to kids with a diagnosis of pediatric cancer in a totally non-scary way. Covers all the types of treatments a child might encounter and makes sense of what a child can expect.

When a Kid Like Me Fights Cancer by Catherine Stier

This product was recommended by Kelly Wilson from Kellys Class Room Online

I like this book because it does a really good job of explaining something as huge and scary as cancer in a way the children who have cancer can understand. My favorite quote from the book: I learn that cancer is not my fault. It’s no one’s fault… It’s just that sometimes something goes wrong inside the body. Then a good kid has to deal with a bad disease.

Cancer Party by Sara S. Olsher

This product was recommended by Kelly Wilson from Kellys Class Room Online

I like this book because it also does a good job of explaining what cancer is in a way children can understand. Whereas my first book choice was written with children who have cancer, this book is written for all children who want to learn what cancer is. Children with a friend or relative who has cancer may be interested in this one. Book #1 deals more with the emotional aspect of having cancer. Book #2 deals more with the scientific aspect of where cancer comes from.

Fritzy Finds a Hat by Scott Hamilton

This product was recommended by Kelly Wilson from Kellys Class Room Online

This one I haven’t read yet, but I want to. I just learned about it while collecting the website links for the other two. This one is written by Scott Hamilton the ice skater and the proceeds go to CARES Foundation and at Moffitt Cancer Center and Moffitt’s Families First Program. That’s pretty cool.

When Mommy Had a Mastectomy by Nancy Reuben Greenfield

This product was recommended by Mary Cristine from Chic Cancer Couture

Some experts say it’s best to be honest with your children about a cancer diagnosis. When Mommy Had a Mastectomy is well thought out with kid-friendly illustrations, to explain a cancer diagnosis, a mastectomy, the treatment, and the healing process. It’s always great when parents get a little help delivering tough news.

Your the best medicine by Julie Aigner

This product was recommended by Dave Pedley from Your Cub

Talking to children can be a sensitive issue, especially if one of their parents is sick. However, this book helps make it easier for children to understand how to take care of their mum/dad at such times. This book takes children through a journey that gives them directions on how to take care of their parents; the same way parents take care of them when sick.

A Kids Book About Cancer by Dr. Kelsie Storm

This product was recommended by Liane Paonessa from Green Room Agency

The books present the topic in simple and basic terminology to help kids feel informed and empowered. This is a great resource for parents who want to introduce the conversation about cancer with their kids.

The Puddle Jumper’s Guide to Kicking Cancer by Elizabeth A. Billups

This product was recommended by Jennifer Willy from Etia

A true story about a spunky puddle jumper and her dog who give readers an honest, hopeful, and even funny look at what it’s really like to kick cancer.

How Do You Care for a Very Sick Bear? by Vanessa Bayer

This product was recommended by Jennifer Willy from Etia

How Do You Care for a Very Sick Bear? by Vanessa Bayer is a sweet picture book with advice for children―and adults―for dealing with a sick friend. The actor Vanessa Bayer experienced this firsthand when she was treated for childhood leukemia.

Written by Eve O'Rourke

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