The divorce rate in America peaked at around 50 percent in the 1980s and slowly has been trending downward. It is now slightly more than 40 percent. With so many divorced families, why are there more children’s books depicting single parents? Fruit & Veggie Mom (@Eatfruitnveggie3h) asked me on Twitter, “My question is – what about books for single moms? Everything is mommy and daddy!”
This list is for her! Can you please help me out by adding your favorite children’s books with single parents? Thanks so much!
New Not-To-Be Missed Books with Single Parents
The Secret Sheriff of Sixth Grade by Jordan Sonnenblick
What makes a true hero? Sonnenblick has always created heroes that spoke to me. They weren’t obviously heroic on the outside being puny or skinny but they carried an invisible burden gracefully that would have felled anyone else. They also have the super power to change those around them for the better. Maverick is carrying the weight of his mother’s alcoholism and the instability and poverty that it brings including food instability. His father died in Afghanistan when he was three. His mother has always attracted men who were physically abusive and Maverick’s shame is that he never stood up to them. As the story unfolds, Maverick decides to be that guy who protects the victims at school despite being scrawny. He finds out that people surprise you, especially himself. If you liked Wonder by R. J. Palacio or One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt, you will love this book too. [chapter book, for ages 8 and up]
Single Parent in Children’s Books
10. A Chair for My Mother by Vera Williams
I love this picture book about an African American multigenerational family who save up and then search for a special chair after a fire destroys their home. Though it is never explicitly stated, the family is depicted as a grandmother, a mother and her daughter. [picture book, ages 4 and up]