Children’s books are mirrors, windows, and sliding doors. They offer a reflection of who we are, a view into the lives of others with different identities and experiences, and other worlds we aren’t familiar with. Here are some picture book recommendations to help children identify with and understand the immigrant and refugee experience.

Where Will I Live?where will I live cover by Rosemary McCarney introduces the idea that sometimes children need to leave home because they aren’t safe. Breathtaking photographs of refugee children from places like Hungary, Greece, and Myanmar help powerfully illustrate the experience of physical discomfort, uncertainty, isolation, and searching for a permanent home. The book concludes with a heartfelt sentiment: “After such a long journey, and such a long wait, I hope someone smiles and says “Welcome home…I hope that someone is you” This story promotes awareness and empathy for refugees worldwide. Ages 5+

Lost and Found Cat coverLost and Found Cat: The True Story of Kunkush’s Incredible Journey by Doug Kuntz and Amy Shrodes is the amazing story of a refugee family fleeing danger in Iraq. They lose their beloved pet cat Kunkush on the journey to Greece. Through a news website and worldwide effort, Kunkush is later discovered, cared for and reunited with his original Iraqi family. This book includes photographs of the family reuniting with their cat. Ages 4+

Check out more immigration stories for young kids recommended by our youth services staff.

View Mirrors, Windows, and Sliding Doors: a TedX Talk by Akhand Dugar (YouTube)