The “D” Word – Divorce

Divorce9781931636766_p0_v1_s260x420The “D” Word

Julia Cook, author

Phillip W. Rodgers, illustrator

National Center for Youth Issues, Fiction, June 2011

Suitable for:  Ages 4 and up

Themes: Dealing with Divorce, Separation, Different Families

Opening/Synopsis“My name is Otis.  I used to be the happiest kid on the planet!  This is a picture of my family and me…the way it used to be…This is what my family looks like now.  My mom won’t even talk to my dad, and my dad won’t even talk to my mom.”   Otis is so upset that he can’t even say the “D” word — divorce.  His parents use Otis as their messenger and spy.   Otis tells Gram that he feels like “it’s all his fault.”  She wisely tells him he didn’t cause the divorce and he can’t control what is happening between his parents.   Gram says they’ll still be a family, just a different kind of family.  Otis finds a way to adjust to the divorce.

Why I like this book:  As many of you may have guessed, I am a huge fan of Julia Cook’s books.  Divorce is upsetting for children and they don’t know how to do deal with their feelings.  Cook has written a very helpful book for children,  families and educators.  Cook,  a former teacher and school guidance counselor, often heard students comment that they were the cause of the their parent’s divorce.  She came up with three reasons that are very reassuring for kids going through a life altering divorce.  This is an excellent book for children to understand that they aren’t the reason and what they can do to help themselves.  And it is a guide for parents on how to deal with divorce with their kids.  It’s a family book.  Phillip Rodger’s illustrations are priceless.  They are colorful, expressive and emotive.  They capture the tone of her story.

Resource:  The book  is a resource on how to successfully deal with divorce.  There is an introduction in the beginning from Julia Cook.  She has a list of three C’s of divorce that she uses with children:  I did not Cause it.  I cannot control it.  I’m going to have to learn to Cope with it.   She also offers survival tips for parents.  Visit Julia Cook’s website,  to view the many books she has written.

Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book.  To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Books.

About Patricia Tiltonhttps://childrensbooksheal.wordpress.comI want "Children's Books Heal" to be a resource for parents, grandparents, teachers and school counselors. My goal is to share books on a wide range of topics that have a healing impact on children who are facing challenges in their lives. If you are looking for good books on grief, autism, visual and hearing impairments, special needs, diversity, bullying, military families and social justice issues, you've come to the right place. I also share books that encourage art, imagination and creativity. I am always searching for those special gems to share with you. If you have a suggestion, please let me know.

32 thoughts on “The “D” Word – Divorce

    • I appreciate the comments Niamh. With so many children dealing with divorce, it is a helpful book. I love Julia Cook’s books. They are always great classroom books. My favorite is Tattle Tongue.


  1. The list of three C’s sounds like a useful, manageable tool for kids. Great resource for families needing to support their kids during a difficult time.


  2. So sad that there is a need for a book on this topic. But, such is life, and it’s good to find helpful resources for children in this difficult situation. Thanks for sharing this, Patricia!


    • I agree — should have looked at the statistics. It is so hard for kids, but they all have friends with divorced parents. It’s nice Julia tackled this subject. Great read for kids and for parents.


  3. Julia Cook has written a book that needed to be written. I applaud her style and kid friendliness. Even the dog on the cover looks miserable – 🙂 Parents need to know that they are not divorcing their kids – just their other half! They need to reassure children of their love – both of them. And using kids as spies and message carriers in a divorce should be a federal offense! Guess I feel strongly about this topic.

    FREE “Sneak Peek” inside 8x of my books


    • Diane, sometimes the books find me. But, I am a fan of Julia Cook’s books because she writes very simple books for young kids on important issues. And, there is usually a sense of humor. This book was more serious. I hope this book does reach the kids who are dealing with divorce, which is so painful as you know.


  4. Just last evening a mom came in with her little boy and asked “Do you have anything for his age about divorce?” The only book I had was for a bit older kids (What in the World Do You Do When Your Parents Divorce?). I’m so glad to learn about this book from you, Patricia, and will get into the shop right away.


    • Craig, I’m glad you spotted my review and the book. Julia Cook is among my favorite authors for books that are all centered around children’s issues, behavior etc. You might check her out and look at her titles.


  5. Thanks, Pat…as I mentioned in a comment to you, this book will be especially helpful right now…I’ve emailed this link to my daughter. We can always count on you to review wonderful books that address important and often sensitive issues.:) You are the best!


  6. The first lines made me so sad. It’s so great that this book addresses divorce in a way that can help a child through the difficult emotions. Pat, you just are wonderful at finding these books. I hope you know how helpful your website is!


    • Thank you. Julia Cook is a favorite author and she writes excellent books on special issues/needs. She’s a former guidance counselor and knows her material. Her books are exceptional. I’m lways searching for the niche books that aren’t in the mainstream publishing houses. Sometimes the books find me.


  7. Pingback: Children and Divorce, Something to Think About « CALIFORNIA FAMILY LAW PARALEGAL

  8. Thanks for shedding light on this, and the many other important and healing books you highlight! We just recently posted a list of children’s books dealing with divorce. Perhaps readers here might find it helpful:

    We also have links to many books and resources for step-parents and blended families, including our own book, “My Fairy Stepmother” – the first fairy tale with a GOOD stepmom!

    Thanks again for your wonderful blog.


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