For Kids

Few books, groups, or other resources are available for the children of mothers with cancer. Here are some of the ones we have found.



  • Nowhere Hair, by Sue Glader, Pink Power Mom 2011; Gold Medal in Health category at 2011 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards – by a landslide! – vetted and loved by 100+ cancer programs, this comes highly recommended!
  • What’s Up With Bridget’s Mom? Medikidz explain breast cancer is a way cool graphic novel for elementary-age kids that explains cancer, radiation, and chemotherapy at an age-appropriate level.   My kids think it’s awesome, and so do I!  Buy this book and shop for others at the American Cancer Society Bookstore;
  • Hope the Bear, by Lynette Wilhardt and distributed by Kids Konnected;
  • In Mommy’s Garden, by Neyal Ammary, MPH; illustrated by Christopher Risch;
  • Kemo Shark (coloring book), by H. Elizabeth King and distributed by Kidscope;
  • The Paper Chain, by Claire Blake, Eliza Blanchard, and Kathy Parkinson;
  • Our Mom has Cancer, written by real-life kids, has real-life coping strategies; and
  • Mommy and Me… taking care of each other, is a 34 page book that provides words to help explain cancer to children which is included with the purchase of every Kimmie Cares doll.  The Kimmie Cares dolls also comes with two different removable wigs and a scarf so children can model their doll to ‘look just like Mommy’ before , during and after treatment.



  • Kids Konnected A site dedicated to the support and education of children who have a parent with cancer or who have lost one.


  • Google Answers has a good list as well.  We haven’t tried them all, but you may find something helpful there.

In addition, The Wellness Community and local hospitals often offer support groups or special events for caregivers, spouses, and/or children of cancer patients. Call your local medical facility to find out more.


It is so important to know your family health history. This can start in childhood by not hiding an illness or calling it something else (like the flu).  Too many of us come from families with cancer histories that were unacknowledged or vague at best. One sure way to beat cancer is to be one step ahead and look for it before it’s arrival. Toward that end, the U.S. Surgeon General has created this site to record and update your family’s health history. Please take advantage of it today.

16 Responses to For Kids

  1. mod*mom says: is a fun + non-scarey way for children + moms to learn about people + procedures in a hospital. it really helped me with my 2-year old, so she wasn’t as scared when she went to the chemo office + saw where i’d be all day, then when i had to go to the hospital + had the drain tubes in my breast when i can home

  2. Amy@UWM says:

    The American Cancer Society has a few really good books for kids, including Our Mom Has Cancer, a book written by kids for kids.

    Here’s a link to the ACS Bookstore:

  3. Brian S says:

    Camp Kesem is a summer camp for children between the ages of 6 and 13 whose parents have been affected by cancer. We are currently at over 20 colleges around the nation and we are constantly looking for families to help. Our summer camp is FREE because we fund raise over the entire year to pay for the camp. The camp is not a therapy session, but a camp where we let the kids forget about their problems around other kids in the exact same situation. I am the president of the camp at the University of Florida and would encourage anyone to look into us if we can help you. Thank you.

  4. […] The Wellness Community, CancerCare for Kids, and KidsKonnected to help me find out where to go and what to do to help my kids weather the stormy days as I adjust to the new treatment and recover from the surgery and its […]

  5. Nanci Hersh, mother of 2, award winning artist, and two-time cancer survivor has illustrated a beautiful book for children titled, Butterfly Kisses and Wishes on Wings – When someone you love has cancer… a hopeful, helpful book for kids. Learn more about this heartwarming, uplifting story at, or call 303-589-2099 for details.

  6. Sheila Knight says:

    My name is Sheila, and I am a nursing student at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona, through Arizona State University. I chose to do my vulnerable population project on children of Oncology patients. Do you think you could help me with information/advice for nurses as they care for and interact with these families?
    Sheila Knight

    • Hi Shelia,

      As the author of Butterfly Kisses and Wishes on Wings – I think you will find our book to be a very valuable resource. Our book is not cutesy or poetic – but it is very real. Text is simple and clear and the images (created about a cancer survivor) are deeply real. Please feel free to visit our website at and write to me or call me. I would love to get you a copy. We also have it in Spanish.
      Warm wishes,
      Ellen McVicker

      P.S. Thanks for all you do for families.

  7. Hi there! This article could not be written much better!
    Reading through this article reminds me of my
    previous roommate! He continually kept talking about this.
    I will forward this article to him. Fairly certain
    he’ll have a great read. Thanks for sharing!

  8. SB says:


    Thank you, I was diagnosed while pregnant and the mother of a toddler and both baby and I are ok now, two years later. I found this list very useful then, thank you very much for having made it available.

    I recently wrote and illustrated Princess Bella’s Special Summer. This book tells the story of a special princess, recalling a summer when her mother had cancer. This book does not explain cancer or treatment. Instead, this story focuses on the memorable moments shared between a family, cherishing the moments while struggling through an illness that touches many lives. Just another idea for those looking for children’s books.

    Best wishes for all.

  9. […] Mothers with Cancer, a website created by 20 mothers, provides a comprehensive list of books for children and teens. […]

  10. Charlotte Stiverson says:

    As a breast cancer survivor and a teacher who taught during the chemotherapy treatments, I searched for a picture book to read to my students. Without finding the right book to read, an oncology nurse suggested writing one, which I did – Nellie’s Walk. This book was published this summer by the Oncology Nursing Society. Nellie’s Walk involves a mother and daughter taking a walk and comparing the body changes of chemotherapy with the seasonal changes in nature. I would love to have this book added to your children’s book list in order for others going through this process to have a resource to use when explaining how the body adapts during chemotherapy. For more information, the book is listed and available on Amazon and at‘s-walk. Thank you.

  11. […] Mothers with Cancer, a website created by 20 mothers, provides a comprehensive list of books for children and teens. […]

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