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Step & Blended Families

Featured Books in this Category / Main Booklist

Featured Books

Active Parenting for Stepfamilies. Michael Popkin & Elizabeth Einstein, $18.95

For stepfamilies, getting married is the easy part! This encouraging guide will help couples work together to raise children in the challenging stepfamily environment. They will also learn how to use powerful communication and negotiation skills to strengthen marriage and family.


Blended Families. Sarah Schuette, $6.95 (ages 3-7)

Celebrate the diverse family groups that make up our world! Positive, clear text helps emergent readers understand different family relationships, while recognizing the bonds that all families share.


Blending Families Successfully: Helping Parents and Kids Navigate the Challenges So That Everyone Ends Up Happy. George Glass, $25.95

George Glass, MD, a board-certified psychiatrist, has designed a book to help parents understand the challenges of beginning new lives with blended families, and to help their children make the necessary adjustments. He explains how to approach unavoidable dilemmas when they occur and offers invaluable lessons about the link between divorce and issues of self-esteem, depression, substance abuse, and relationship failures that often result from the breakup of a family.

Gathered from his years in practice and his own personal experience as a member of a blended family, Glass provides practical solutions to everyday problems. Blending a family, Glass explains, is a process, which requires patience. It can take a long time to develop trust, acceptance, and a willingness to overlook transgressions that in the beginning can cause tension. Each chapter offers specific advice to help blended family members improve their communication skills and ease the transitions from separate households into a larger, combined community. Taken together with a steady dose of “Dos and Don’ts,” this book provides an inspiring toolkit for families in need.

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A Career Girl’s Guide to Becoming a Stepmom: Expert Advice from Other Stepmoms on How to Juggle Your Job, Your Marriage and Your New Stepkids. Jacquelyn Fletcher, $19.99

A Career Girl's Guide to Becoming a Stepmom is an interactive guide that combines tips from professional women who have already taken the stepfamily plunge with expert advice from academics and marriage and family therapists. Author Jacquelyn B. Fletcher is a stepdaughter and stepmother of three who knows why you married or moved in with that man and his kids. It's simple. Love and hope.


Do You Sing Twinkle?  Sandra Levins & Bryan Langdo, $13.95

A story about remarriage and new family for children ages 4-8.


Falling into Place. Stephanie Greene, $6.95 (novel, grades 5-8)

Margaret likes her family the way it is — just her, Dad and her grandparents. But then Dad remarries, and Margaret suddenly has three new sisters AND there’s a baby on the way!


A Glass. Etienne Delessert, $22.99

Children's author and illustrator Etienne Delessert tells the story of Eglantine Besson, the woman who became his mother, and of the glass that came to represent their relationship.

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Grandparenting the Blended Family: How to Succeed with Your Step or Adopted Grandchildren. Dene Low, $20.95

Ever wonder what other grandparents do to succeed with their grandchildren? GRANDPARENTING THE BLENDED FAMILY explores over 30 different grandparents and how they interact with their grandchildren — natural, step, and adopted.


Jigsaw Puzzle Family: the Stepkids' Guide to Fitting It All Together. Cynthia MacGregor, $18.95

Jigsaw Puzzle Family helps kids realize they’re not alone — many, many other kids are dealing with a new stepparent, new rules in the house, new stepbrothers and/or stepsisters, living somewhere new. Readers will find engaging stories of children facing the same issues, dozens of practical and helpful suggestions for making stepfamily life better, gentle guidance in understanding the mixed feelings that go with fitting into a blended (“jigsaw puzzle”) family, and lots of reassurance that time will help.


Keys to Successful Stepfathering. Carl Pickhardt, $10.99

Becoming a stepfather means new relationships, new struggles, and new joys. Here's a commonsense, practical guide tht helps stepfathers ease into their new role. The author emphasizes how stepfathers must replace wishful thinking with realistic expectations. Suggestions for getting along with stepchildren and building lasting relationships, managing conflict, establishing authority, and communicating in a positive way are all included to help men fully enjoy the rewards of being a stepfather.

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Making Adult Stepfamilies Work: Strategies for the Whole Family When a Parent Marries Later in Life. Grace Gabe & Jean Lipman-Blumen, $26.99

If you are among the growing number of families in which adults with grown children have remarried later in life, you are probably familiar with the conflicts and complicated emotional dynamics that can result. Parents expect that remarrying will be easier because the children are grown up. But the reality is that these remarriages can cause painful struggles between parents and their adult children. Based on in-depth research by a psychiatrist and a sociologist, Making Adult Stepfamilies Work trains a revealing lens on the sources of these conflicts and teaches the skills required to manage them.


My Father Married Your Mother: Dispatches from the Blended Family. Anne Burt, editor, $21.95

Eye-opening essays by esteemed writers about the rich and complicated lives of stepfamilies. These poignant, heartfelt, sometimes biting tales remind us of the outdated myth of the perfect nuclear family while shedding light on what it means to forge relationships with stepfamily members.


No One’s the Bitch: a Ten-Step Plan for the Mother and Stepmother Relationship. Jennifer Newcomb Marine & Carol Marine, $19.95

Ex-wife/stepmother team Jennifer Newcomb Marine and Carol Marine take the reader for a straight-talking, hand-holding walk through what is typically a very lonely minefield and show you how to create a strong, even friendly, relationship.

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The Remarriage Blueprint: How Remarried Couples and Their Families Succeed or Fail. Maggie Scarf, $18.99

Many remarrying couples set out with a sense of optimism, a belief that this marriage will usher in a life of happiness and family unity — but complicated family dynamics can often strain new partnerships to the breaking point. The challenges of remarriage are pervasive, but little guidance has existed until now. Based on more than a decade of candid, revela­tory interviews, The Remarriage Blueprint provides a crucial explanation of the obstacles to remarriage and the secrets to overcoming them. Maggie Scarf, a consummate relationship expert, plumbs the everyday workings of shared life to illuminate the emotional preconceptions, social pressures, and perpetuated fantasies that confound remarriage. Through cautionary tales and stories of hope, Scarf offers guidance for handling everything from children who reject the new family dynamic to the thorny issue of money. Loaded with practical wisdom and searing accounts, The Remarriage Blueprint is a definitive road map to a happy, thriving, inte­grated household.


Remarried with Children: Ten Secrets for Successfully Blending and Extending Your Family. Barbara LeBey, $19.00

It may not be the family you always dreamed of — but it’s your family now. This honest and hopeful book shows you the secrets at the heart of a happily blended family.


The Ring Bearer. Floyd Cooper, $22.99

Jackson’s mama is getting married, and he gets to be the ring bearer. But Jackson is worried... What if he trips? Or walks too slowly? Or drops the rings? And what about his new stepsister, Sophie? She’s supposed to be the flower girl, but Jackson’s not sure she’s taking her job as seriously as she should.

In a celebration of blended families, this heartwarming story, stunningly illustrated by the award-winning Floyd Cooper, is a perfect gift for any child who’s nervous to walk down the aisle at a wedding, and shows kids that they can handle life’s big changes.


7 Steps to Bonding with Your Stepchild. Suzen Ziegahn, $21.99

The success or failure of a stepparent to bond with stepchildren can make or break a new marriage. But this book has a refreshing message — it is possible to achieve long-lasting, rewarding relationships with your new children. Most stepparents feel caught in a bind because in order to connect with their stepchild, they have to reach out but not too much, too little, or too deliberately. And relationships with stepchildren are inherently different from those with biological children who love their parent unconditionally. But these seven basic steps will give you the essentials, from deciding what kind of stepparent you want to be to realizing that love comes later.

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The Single Girl’s Guide to Marrying a Man, His Kids, and His Ex-Wife: Becoming a Stepmother with Humor and Grace. Sally Bjornsen, $16.00

A funny, honest, and empathetic resource for the novice stepmother, which includes advice on:

  • The kids: Adjusting to suspicion, resentment, and biological-parent loyalties
  • The ex-wife: Living calmly alongside her, whether she's a psycho or the perfect mother
  • The holidays: Accommodating old family traditions and developing new ones
  • The sex: Keeping love alive through the kids' bed-wetting and nightmares.

Stepmonster: a New Look at Why Real Stepmothers Think, Feel and Act the Way They Do. Wednesday Martin, $36.00

Stepmonster illuminates the harrowing process of becoming a stepmother, considers the myths and realities of being married to a man with children, counteracts the cultural notion that stepmothers are solely responsible for the challenges they encounter, identifies the "Five Step-Dilemmas That Create Conflict," and considers the emotional and social challenges men with children face when they remarry.

Finally, in an unexpected twist, Martin shows why the myth of the Wicked Stepmother is our single best tool for understanding who real stepmothers are and how they feel.


Step Parenting and the Blended Family: Recognizing and Overcoming the Obstacles. Scott Wooding, $24.95

Despite the fact that more than 40 percent of Canadian marriages end in divorce each year, over 70 percent of divorced people eventually remarry and fail again — over 50 percent of the time. Among the many reasons for the failure of these second marriages between supposedly older and wiser participants, the problems stemming from step-parenting and the blending of the families ranks high, explains psychologist and author Scott Wooding in this comprehensive and groundbreaking look at the challenges faced by couples starting over again.

Starting with the break-up itself, and after outlining the pitfalls and hurdles surrounding the love which most adults assume will lead to new found happiness, Dr. Wooding presents a comprehensive roadmap, a one step-at-a-time guide to successful remarriage for parents and children alike.

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The Step-Parents' Parachute. Flora McEvedy, $18.95

In a society where 1 in 4 marriages now end in divorce, the traditional model of the nuclear family unit has radically changed. A startling 1 in 10 families in the UK (the statistics are double this in the US) grow up as part of a step family. Yet this phenomenon is still hopelessly unchartered territory, where the image of the wicked step-mother still presides.

Flora McEvedy could find nothing to help her when she became a step-mother at the age of 28 and the unique passion and energy of this book stems from her experiences. The Step-parents' Parachute will endow the reader with a body of instantly accumulated knowledge. Neatly organised, easy to use, practical and positive, this inspirational book will offer a path through a subject riven with negative assumptions and enable the transformation of the step-family into a happy, rewarding and stable family home.


Straight Talk about Divorce and Blended Families. Carrie Iorizzo, $13.95 (ages 10-14+)

Many young people find themselves dealing with issues surrounding divorce, remarriage, and blended families. This candid and informative book addresses the myriad of emotions young people may experience during a divorce and the unique challenges blended families face.


We Are All Made of Molecules. Susin Nielsen, $12.99 (novel, ages 12-14)

Thirteen-year-old Stewart Inkster is academically brilliant but "ungifted" socially. Fourteen-year-old Ashley Anderson is the undisputed "It" girl of grade nine, but her marks stink. Their worlds are about to collide when Stewart and his dad move in with Ashley and her mom. "The Brady Bunch" it isn't. Stewart is trying to be 89.9% happy about it, but Ashley is 110% horrified. She already has to hide the truth behind her parents' divorce; "Spewart" could further threaten her position at the top of the social ladder. They are complete opposites. And yet, no matter their differences, they share one thing in common: they, like the rest of us, are all made of molecules.

Written in alternating voices, Susin Nielsen deftly explores family tragedy and family ties; sibling rivalry and union; and adolescent confusion and revelation.

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Complete Booklist

Active Parenting for Stepfamilies. Michael Popkin & Elizabeth Einstein, $18.95

Blending Families Successfully: Helping Parents and Kids Navigate the Challenges So That Everyone Ends Up Happy. George Glass, $25.95

A Career Girl’s Guide to Becoming a Stepmom: Expert Advice from Other Stepmoms on How to Juggle Your Job, Your Marriage and Your New Stepkids. Jacquelyn Fletcher, $19.99

Grandparenting the Blended Family: How to Succeed with Your Step or Adopted Grandchildren. Dene Low, $20.95

Keys to Successful Stepfathering. Carl Pickhardt, $10.99

Making Adult Stepfamilies Work: Strategies for the Whole Family When a Parent Marries Later in Life. Grace Gabe & Jean Lipman-Blumen, $26.995

My Father Married Your Mother: Dispatches from the Blended Family. Anne Burt, editor, $21.95

No One’s the Bitch: a Ten-Step Plan for the Mother and Stepmother Relationship. Jennifer Newcomb Marine & Carol Marine, $19.95

The Remarriage Blueprint: How Remarried Couples and Their Families Succeed or Fail. Maggie Scarf, $18.99

Remarried with Children: Ten Secrets for Successfully Blending and Extending Your Family. Barbara LeBey, $19.00

7 Steps to Bonding with Your Stepchild. Suzen Ziegahn, $21.99

The Single Girl’s Guide to Marrying a Man, His Kids, and His Ex-Wife: Becoming a Stepmother with Humor and Grace. Sally Bjornsen, $16.00

Stepmonster: a New Look at Why Real Stepmothers Think, Feel and Act the Way They Do. Wednesday Martin, $36.00

Step Parenting and the Blended Family: Recognizing and Overcoming the Obstacles. Scott Wooding, $24.95

The Step-Parents' Parachute. Flora McEvedy, $18.95

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Books for Kids & Teens

Blended Families. Sarah Schuette, $8.95 (ages 3-7)

Do You Sing Twinkle? A Story about Remarriage and New Family. Sandra Levins & Bryan Langdo, $14.50 (ages 3-7)

Falling into Place. Stephanie Greene, $8.95 (novel, grades 5-8)

A Glass. Etienne Delessert, $22.99 (ages 5-8)

Jigsaw Puzzle Family: the Stepkids' Guide to Fitting It All Together. Cynthia MacGregor, $18.95 (ages 6-10)

The Ring Bearer. Floyd Cooper, $22.99

Straight Talk about Divorce and Blended Families. Carrie Iorizzo, $13.95 (ages 10-14+)

We Are All Made of Molecules. Susin Nielsen, $12.99 (novel, ages 12-14)

The Wonder of You: a Book for Celebrating Baby’s First Year. Nancy Tillman, $36.99 (all ages)

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