Books can help us face our biggest fears and deepest grief.  The following titles are some of my favorite books dealing with illness and death.
BOOKS FOR CHILDREN
Now One Foot, Now the OtherNow One Foot, Now the Other
by Tomie dePaola, G. P. Putnam’s Sons.
After his grandfather suffers a stroke, Bobby teaches him to walk again—just like his grandfather once taught him.
Ida B. and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the WorldIda B. and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World
by Katherine Hannigan, Greenwillow Books.
The feisty Ida B. struggles to deal with her mother’s cancer and the changes it brings to her idyllic life.
A Pillow for my MomA Pillow for my Mom
by Charissa Sgouros, illustrated by Christine Ross, Houghton Mifflin Company.
A girl misses her mother, who is sick and in the hospital.
The Hope Tree: Kids Talk about Breast CancerThe Hope Tree: 
Kids Talk about Breast Cancer

by Laura Numeroff and Wendy S. Harpham, M.D., illustrated by David McPhail, Simon and Schuster.
A group of children (depicted as animals) work through the emotions and difficulties they face when a parent has cancer.
Kids Write Through It: Essays from Kids who have Triumphed Over TroubleKids Write Through It: Essays from Kids who have Triumphed Over Trouble
Fairview Press.
Children share personal essays about their struggles through difficult times—from social struggles at school to the serious illness or death of a family member.
Remembering MamaRemembering Mama by Dara Dokas, illustrated by Angela L. Chostner, Augsburg Fortress Publishers.
A daughter works through her grief by remembering special details about her mother.
Dog HeavenDog Heaven by Cynthia Rylant, Blue Sky Press.
In Dog Heaven, God gives dogs fields for running, along with biscuits in funny shapes and fluffy cloud beds.
Blackberry StewBlackberry Stew by Isabell Monk, illustrated by Janice Lee Porter, Carolrhoda Books. Inc.
A young girl overcomes her reluctance to attend her grandpa’s funeral by talking about memories of their time together.
Jim’s Dog, MuffinsJim’s Dog, Muffins by Miriam Cohen, illustrated by Ronald Himler, Star Bright Books.
Jim’s classmates struggle to help him feel better after the death of his dog Muffins.
Nana Upstairs & Nana DownstairsNana Upstairs & Nana Downstairs
by Tomie dePaola, Penguin Putnam Books.
A young boy must say goodbye to his beloved great-grandmother.
I’ll Always Love YouI’ll Always Love You by Hans Wilhelm
Crown Publishers, Inc.
A young boy deals with the death of his dog—the “best dog in the whole world.”
BOOKS FOR ADULTS
Helping Children Cope with the Loss of a Loved One: A Guide for GrownupsHelping Children Cope with the Loss of a Loved One: A Guide for Grownups by William C. Kroen, Ph.D., LMHC, Free Spirit Publishing.
Living with Grief: Children and AdolescentsLiving with Grief: Children and Adolescents
Edited by Kenneth J. Doka and Amy S. Tucci, Hospice Foundation of America
Click on the following links for additional resources on helping children deal with illness and death. If you have found some other useful resources, please contact me.
 
Children’s Literature Network
Books about Parents and Serious Health Challenges

Best-Childrens-Books.com
Children’s books about death. This list was gathered from several bibliotherapy lists.