We Were Gonna Have a Baby, But We Had an Angel Instead
by Pat Schwiebert
Illustrations by Taylor Bills
ISBN: 0-97-242411-3
Grief Watch Paperback $7.95

From Publishers Weekly February 23, 2004
posted with permissions from GriefWatch

A small boy gazes into an empty bassinet on the cover of this psychologically astute book, which helps children cope with prenatal death or stillbirth. The narrator briefly recalls how he had looked forward to having a sibling, imagining the two of them "building a fort and playing tricks on our parents," and recalling how he had loved listening to the baby inside his mother. "But something happened," he reports, his trusty basset hound mirroring his sad, dejected expression. "The baby died. Our baby is not going to live with us." With admirable economy and sensitivity, Schwiebert (previously teamed with Bills on Tear Soup) touches on a broad range of feelings without intruding on those of readers in a similar position: at the end, the child says, "If this just happened to you, I'm sorry you got an angel instead of a baby. I think having a baby would have been more fun." There's no explicit discussion of angels or heaven, but, after the baby's death is mentioned, Bills's cartoon illustrations introduce the baby as a smiling, winged figure with a halo, invisible to the grief-stricken figures around him, the readers can interpret this as they choose. Most useful of all may be the endnotes for parents, which provide insightful and practical suggestions on aiding similarly bereaved children. Nobody wants to need this book, but those who do need it will be grateful to have it. Ages 2-up.

KotaPress Editor's Note: We here at KotaPress have been big fans of all the work done thru GriefWatch.com and the Tear Soup book. This is another awesome addition to a collection of support materials I wish none of us needed. But since many of us do need it, I'd like to thank everyone at GriefWatch.com for continuing to support so many in need!!

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