The 7 Best Books for New Big Sisters

Pecan Pie Baby

Preparing for a new sibling can be an exciting time. But it can also be a time of confusion, doubt, and questions. Lots and lots of questions. Then the new baby arrives, and, well, there’s just no getting around the fact that life is different. As a parent, the trick is convincing the older sibling that life is different in a good way. Here are seven books featuring new big sisters:

Once Upon A Baby Brother, by Sarah Sullivan and Tricia Tusa
Lizzie has always loved to tell stories, and up until recently, everyone has loved to listen. But now there’s her new baby brother Marvin stealing the show, and suddenly nobody has time for Lizzie, or her stories, anymore. A kindhearted teacher presents Lizzie with a new story challenge, and she is thrilled. Finally! Somebody who listens. But suddenly Lizzie finds herself with no ideas. What’s worse than a storyteller with no stories?

Best-Ever Big Sister, by Karen Katz
This board book for the littlest of the soon-to-be big sibling recognizes that with a new baby comes sibling jealousy. Sometimes those older siblings need a little reminder of the ways that they too are special. After all, only big kids get to eat ice cream. Or ride a tricycle. Or eat with a fork. The language in this book is simple, the message complete. And as always, Katz’s illustrations are cheerful, and perfect for the smallest readers.

Maple, by Lori Nichols
The whimsical, free-spirited Maple has a special relationship with the tree she was named after, a tree that was planted at her birth. She sings to it, dances around it, and delights as it changes from season to season. Still, there’s a part of Maple that longs for a playmate. And then comes the day a new sapling appears next to the maple, and a new sister appears in Maple’s home. This book is sweet, and gentle, and lovely, as are the two others that follow it, Maple and Willow Together, and Maple and Willow Apart.

Little Miss, Big Sis, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Peter H. Reynolds
I just love this author and illustrator duo, and this book is no exception. With minimal text and engaging illustrations, this is the story of how Little Miss learns to become a Big Sis. At first, it’s nothing but eat, sleep, change, repeat. Then there’s the hair-pulling and toy-stealing stage. Not exactly fun. But along the way, big sisters learn how to teach new baby brothers games and songs, and how to be a best friend.

Pecan Pie Baby, by Jacqueline Woodson and Sophie Blackall
It’s always been just Gia and her mom, and they’ve gotten along just fine, thank you very much. Now the “ding-dang baby” is coming and  Mama, the extended family, even Gia’s teacher and classmates talk about the baby like it’s something special. Only Gia understands the truth: this baby will ruin her life. Filled with very real feelings of jealousy and anxiety, this story concludes with the reassurance that even a new baby can’t change a Mama’s love for the older sibling.

Wolfie the Bunny, by Ame Dyckman and Zachariah OHora
Children who become older siblings through adoption will appreciate the acknowledgment that the transition is tough no matter how it happens. The Bunny family open the door one day to find a wolf cub on their front step. Being the loving family they are, they immediately take him and love on him as one of their own. Everybody thinks Wolfie is the greatest thing to happen since organic carrots. Only big sister Dot seems to realize the truth…that one day Wolfie is going to EAT THEM ALL. After all, that’s what wolves do to bunnies.  Right?

Penny and Her Song, by Kevin Henkes
This early reader captures another common problem for new siblings: “Shh! The baby is sleeping!”  Penny comes home from school excited to share a song she has created. But first  Mama quiets her, and then Papa. She tries singing in the mirror, but that’s no fun. And when she tries again at dinner, she’s reminded of the no singing at the table rule. Penny becomes more and more impatient, until finally she has her moment in the spotlight and it turns out that it’s the perfect time.

What stories do you recommend for big-sisters-to-be?

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