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The web Directory of Information Materials for People Affected by Cancer is regularly updated and currently has details of over 1,900 booklets, leaflets, books and audiovisual materials for people affected by cancer. Most have been published in the last five years but we have included some older ones that are still useful.

Results: 467

Cover image of 'Out of the blue. Making memories last when someone died'

Out of the blue. Making memories last when someone died (2006)

Winston's Wish

This book has been written and designed specifically for teenagers with aim of supporting them through their bereavement using a range of activities. Narrated throughout by teenagers' words and stories, the book talks openly about the real feelings they may struggle with when someone important in their life dies.  The activities in the book allow those feelings to be worked through and safely explored.  Each character in the book reinforces the message that "I'm not alone". "Out of the blue" can be completed by a teenager on their own or with the help of a family member or appropriate professional. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The enduring melody'

The enduring melody (2006)

Darton, Longman and Todd

A moving and tender meditation on loving, living and dying by one of the greatest Anglican spiritual writers. Michael Mayne, author of three of the best-selling spirituality titles of recent years, Learning to Dance, Pray, Love, Remember, and A Year Lost And Found, set out to complete a final book that would tackle the linked questions of what is the solid ground of a belief which for him has proved authentic and survived into old age, and how ageing may affect us physically, mentally and spiritually. On completing it, he discovered that he was suffering from cancer of the jaw, and in a nine-month journal he reflects (among much else) on whether his faith stands firm, and where God may be found in the challenging country of cancer. The Enduring Melody is a moving and tender meditation on loving, living and dying by one of the greatest living Anglican spiritual writers. Michael Mayne is the former head of religious programmes at the BBC and Dean Emeritus of Westminster. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Why mum? A small child dealing with a big problem'

Why mum? A small child dealing with a big problem (2005)


'Why Mum?' is a children's picture book exploring the serious illness of parent through the eyes of seven-year-old Matthew. It works chronologically through the illness and deals with the different feelings and questions the child experiences as they arise. It also shows how life changes for him and the family and how he adapts to this. Beautifully illustrated by the author's son, this book is about one mother's illness and her family’s experience. It would be useful in any situation where a serious illness affects family life and especially where young children have to deal with difficult situations. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'After someone dies. A leaflet about death, bereavement and grief for young people'

After someone dies. A leaflet about death, bereavement and grief for young people (2004)

Cruse Bereavement Care

Leaflet with support and advice for young people who have been bereaved. It covers the following issues: What is bereavement?; What might I feel?; How can I cope with it all?; I feel so alone; What can help?; How long will it take?

Cover image of 'Michael Rosen's sad book'

Michael Rosen's sad book (2004)

Walker Books

Very occasionally the term non-fiction has to stretch itself to accommodate a book that fits into no category at all. Michael Rosen's Sad Book is such a book. It chronicles Michael's grief at the death of his son Eddie from meningitis at the age of 19. A moving combination of sincerity and simplicity, it acknowledges that sadness is not always avoidable or reasonable and perfects the art of making complicated feelings plain. It wasn't made like any other book either; Michael Rosen said of the text, "I wrote it at a moment of extreme feeling and it went straight down onto the page ... Quentin didn't illustrate it, he 'realised' it. He turned the text into a book and as a result showed me back to myself. No writer could ask and get more than that." And Quentin Blake says that the picture of Michael "being sad but trying to look happy" is the most difficult drawing he's ever done... "a moving experience." (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Gentle willow. A story for children about dying'

Gentle willow. A story for children about dying (2003)

Magination Press

Written for children who may not survive their illness or for the children who know them, the second edition of this tender and touching tale helps address feelings of disbelief, anger, and sadness, along with love and compassion. (Publishers)

Cover image of 'Because... someone I love has cancer: Kids' activity book'

Because... someone I love has cancer: Kids' activity book (2003)

American Cancer Society

Designed for children between the ages of 6 and 12 who have a loved one with cancer, this activity book allows children to work through and express unfamiliar feelings in well-paced activities that progressively teach coping skills. Includes five crayons.  

Cover image of 'Granpa'

Granpa (2003)

Red Fox (Random House)

Granpa nurses his granddaughter's dolls, mistakes her strawberry-flavoured pretend ice-cream for chocolate, takes her tobogganing in the snow, and falls in with her imaginary plans to captain a ship to Africa, like all good Granpas should. It is a friendship that children who read this book will long remember. (Publishers)

Cover image of 'The day the sea went out and never came back'

The day the sea went out and never came back (2003)

Speechmark Publishing Ltd

"The day the sea went out and never came back" is a story for children who have lost someone they love. Eric is a sand dragon who loves the sea very much. Each day, he watches it going out and coming back. His sea is beautiful indeed to him. But one day, the sea goes out and does not come back. Eric waits and waits, but it does not come back. So he falls on the sand in terrible pain. It feels to him as if he has lost everything. After many bleak days, Eric sees a little wild flower. It is dying. Eric knows he must save it. He finds water. More and more flowers appear and so Eric starts to make a beautiful rock pool garden. And as he does, he finds the courage to feel the full pain of his loss, instead of closing his heart. He realises that his memories of his precious sea are like a special kind of treasure in his mind, a treasure he will never lose. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Milly's bug-nut'

Milly's bug-nut (2002)

Winston's Wish

Milly's Bug Nut is the story of a family finding their way through bereavement and of Milly who finds an unexpected answer to her heart's desire. Jill Janney, the author of Milly's Bug Nut, wrote this story for her own children after the death of their father.

Cover image of 'Getting on with cancer'

Getting on with cancer (2002)

Books Beyond Words

"Books beyond words" is a series of picture books that has been developed for people who have difficulty reading and who can understand pictures better than words, and to enable discussion about difficult topics. Supporting text and guidelines are also provided for carers, supporters and professionals. When Veronica's doctor told her she had cancer, she was confused and terrified. Then he told her some cancers can be cured. `Getting on with cancer' tells the story of Veronica, a woman with Down's Syndrome, who has cancer. She has surgery and also radiotherapy and chemotherapy. The book deals honestly with the unpleasant side of treatment. It is designed to be used as a counselling tool by anyone working with people who have both learning disabilities and cancer. It will also be valuable for other client groups, for example, people with chronic mental health problems. The book ends on a positive note. Included in the book is Veronica Donaghey's story 'It's not all bad news', written in her own words. There are also guidelines for carers/supporters and for healthcare professionals, and information on relevant resources and helpful organisations. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Muddles, puddles and sunshine'

Muddles, puddles and sunshine (2000)

Winston's Wish

This activity book offers invaluable practical and sensitive support for bereaved younger children. Beautifully illustrated, it suggests a helpful series of activities and exercises accompanied by the friendly characters of Bee and Bear. The book offers a structure and an outlet for the many difficult feelings which inevitably follow when someone dies. It aims to help children make sense of their experience by reflecting on the different aspects of their grief. At the same time, the book manages to find a balance between remembering the person who has died and having fun. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Two weeks with the Queen'

Two weeks with the Queen (1999)


Colin Mudford is on a quest. His brother Luke has cancer and the doctors in Australia don't seem able to cure him. Sent to London to stay with his Aunty Iris, Colin reckons it's up to him to find the best doctor in the world - and he starts by asking none other than the Queen to help... (This edition aimed at children 8-12 years old, there is another edition for younger children.) (Publisher) Also available as an audiotape.

Cover image of 'C. Because cowards get cancer too...'

C. Because cowards get cancer too... (1999)

Vermilion (Random House)

Shortly before his 44th birthday, John Diamond received a call from the doctor who had removed a lump from his neck. Having been assured for the previous two years that this was a benign cyst, Diamond was told that it was, in fact, cancerous. Suddenly, this man who'd until this point been one of the world's greatest hypochondriacs, was genuinely faced with mortality. And what he saw scared the wits out of him. Out of necessity, he wrote about his feelings in his TIMES column and the response was staggering. Mailbag followed Diamond's story of life with, and without, a lump - the humiliations, the ridiculous bits, the funny bits, the tearful bits. It's compelling, profound, and witty. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'When dinosaurs die. A guide to understanding death'

When dinosaurs die. A guide to understanding death (1998)

Little Brown and Company

No one can really understand death but to children, the passing away of a loved one can be especially perplexing and troublesome. This is true whether the loss is a classmate, friend, family member or pet. Here to offer advice and reassurance are some very wise dinosaurs. This succinct and thorough guide helps dispel the mystery and negative connotations associated with death, providing answers to some of the most-often asked questions and also explores the feelings we may have regarding the death of a loved one and the ways to remember someone after he or she has died. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Water bugs and dragonflies'

Water bugs and dragonflies (1997)

The Pilgrim Press

Talking to children about death can be hard, but it doesn't need to be. Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children can help you to answer their questions. Doris Stickney tells the story of a small colony of water bugs living happily below the surface of a very quiet pond. Every so often one of them climbs up a lily stalk and disappears from sight, never to return. Those left behind are faced with the mystery of what has become of them. The answer to death lies in the questioning. Stickney invites you and your children into the question. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Badger's parting gifts'

Badger's parting gifts (1984)

Andersen Press

Badger is so old that he knows he will soon die. He tries to prepare his friends for this event, but he does die, they are still grief-stricken. Gradually they come to terms with their grief by remembering all the practical things Badger taught them, and so Badger lives on in his friends' memories of him. (Publisher)

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