Adoption is a beautiful gift for both parents and children. For an adopted child, learning about adoption early on is important. Reading books with an adoption theme to your little one is a wonderful way to help them understand adoption and the love you have for them.
Here are 20 of the best children’s books on adoption to get you started. These children’s adoption books for parents are full of easy-to-understand lessons in family dynamics, touching stories of love, and adorable characters to help kids understand what it means to be adopted.
by Leah Campbell
In this warm-hearted tale about a little squirrel who was adopted as a baby, we join Sammy as Mom and Dad Rabbit take him to meet his first family. This storybook is ideal for reading aloud to children age three to five. Open adoption is joyful, but it can also be complex.
This story opens the door for kids to talk honestly about their experiences and feelings. You’ll can also find a list of books and online resources offering research and healthy perspectives around adoption.
by Sharlie Zinniger
This rhyming verse takes you through an adoption journey from start to finish from a child’s point of view. Yes, I’m Adopted! is perfect for anyone whose life has been blessed by adoption. This brightly colored children’s book illustrates how adoption comes from love.
by Jamie Lee Curtis
illustrated by Laura Cornell
This heart-warming tale of a little girl’s favorite bedtime story expresses the desire of all children to know where they come from while describing the indisputible love of an adoptive family.
With the phrase, “tell me again how you couldn’t grow a baby in your tummy,” this girl’s birth story and adoption story combine into one. This is a great book for adopted children who are starting to ask questions about where they come from.
In this unique adoption book, the story tells of the desire that hopeful adoptive parents feel to complete their family. It’s a great tool to share with your child about the amazing love that comes from adoption. You can personalize I Wished for You with your child’s name and photo. So instead of a story about adoption in general, this book puts your little one front and center in a sweet tale of building a family. You can purchase this book at PutMeInTheStory.com.
by Keiko Kasza
A classic in the realm of children’s books on adoption, a bird named Choco continually wants a mother. He looks all over, but never finds anyone who looks quite like him. Choco never considers that Mrs. Bear, someone who does all the things a mommy might do, could be his mother. After seeing that her other children include a piglet and an alligator, Choco realizes that families don’t have to look exactly alike to be a perfect family.
by Hoda Kotb
Illustrated by Suzie Mason
Now a New York Times #1 bestseller, I’ve Loved You Forever is a triumphant, imaginative testimony of the endless love felt between a parent and their child.
Inspired by Hoda Kotb’s heartwarming adoption of her daughter Haley Joy, your child will love this beautiful picture book!
by Tiarra Nazario
A more recent addition to the genre of children’s books on adoption, this sweet story celebrates diversity in both family appearance but also in family size. It tells kids that moms are wonderful, no matter who they are or what they look like because moms love you and take care of you no matter what.
by Cindy Walker
In this gorgeously written and illustrated children’s book, the reader is guided through the story of a birth mother as she prayerfully chooses adoption for her child and searches for loving adoptive parents.
by Todd Parr
This book explains the ways that people can choose to come together to form a family in a kid-friendly accessible way.
With an understanding of how unique each adoption is, and that not everyone comes to it in the same way, Todd Parr’s colorful artwork explores the definition of family.
by Carole Livingston
This picture book handles some of the most frequently asked questions children have about adoption. The answers provided are intended to strengthen feelings of love and self-esteem.
by Dr Marc A Nemiroff Ph. D and Jane Annunziata Psy.D.
Written for an older child who already understands the concept of adoption, this book provides a more extensive understanding of how the adoption process works. It also shares the various feelings that many children have about being adopted. Topics included in All About Adoption include why adoptive couples wish to adopt, and why children are placed for adoption.
by Kelly DiBenedetto, Katie Gorczyca and Jennifer Eckert
This book’s narrator, Charlie, welcomes readers to view the adoption journey from the viewpoint of a child adoptee. This illustrated book is a great tool for families touched by foster care and older child adoption. Adoption is Lifelong Journey grants insight into the emotions and thoughts an adoptee or foster child might face. It also equips parents and caregivers with appropriate responses and resources.
14. Wolfie the Bunny
by Ame Dyckman, illustrated by Zachariah OHora
The Bunny family has adopted a new son, who just happens to be a wolf! Their daughter, Dot, is the only one who realizes Wolfie might eat them all up, and she’s not too excited to have a new brother. She soon realizes that adding to her family isn’t so bad, and having a brother can even be kind of fun! This children’s book is perfect for families to introduce new siblings who join the family through adoption.
by John McCutheon
John McCutcheon’s lyrics coupled with Julie Paschkis’s colorful art celebrate diversity in families in this adoption picture book. Children will have fun hearing and learning rhyming structure and singing along to this joyful tale. It’s a playful way to introduce children to a wide variety of families on a celebratory day!
by Susana Lopez, illustrated by Ulises Wensell
This picture book is geared for older children, and it stars Carlotta, who will be adopted tomorrow. As she falls asleep, she dreams about her new family. Will they be astronauts pirates, adventurers, or bakers? She soon comes to discover that her new family is the best family in the world.
by Uma Krishnaswami, illustrated by Jamel Akib
Arun’s family will soon celebrate Rakhi, the Hindu holiday to celebrate brothers and sisters. He wants someone to share the holiday with, and his biggest wish is for a little sister. This wish comes true when his parents travel to India to adopt Asha and welcome their new baby girl into the family. This book is ideal for young children excitedly awaiting a new sibling as the family experiences their international adoption journey together.
by Cheramy Hassen, illustrated by Sergio Drumond
The Star That Was You is a gentle and loving way to introduce a very young adopted child to the story of how she or he came into the family. The artwork is full-page, colorful, and beautiful. This book is especially valuable to children with adoptive parents who seek early, yet gentle ways to introduce them to their adoption story, and to help them to be comfortable with it.
by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell, illustrated by Henry Cole
In this heartwarming true story, two penguins create a nontraditional family. At the Central Park Zoo, two penguins named Roy and Silo wanted a family. And with the assistance of a kind zookeeper, Roy and Silo got the chance to welcome a baby penguin of their very own. This charming little book is fun for readers of all ages.
by Mary Huron Hunter and Avery Hunter, illustrated by Danielle Duer
This one-of-a-kind adoption storybook was created for young readers and is meant to reinforce the birth mother’s presence in their life. It’s based on the true story of a birth mother’s courageous and difficult choice of adoption.
The book gives adoptive parents the opportunity to have open conversations with their child as he or she grows into a deeper understanding of complex life experiences. It also makes a great keepsake gift to birth mothers who lovingly choose adoptive parents for their children.