HomeRecommendations & reviewsYoung adult → Look after yourself this Libraries Week with our top YA wellbeing picks

Look after yourself this Libraries Week with our top YA wellbeing picks

Written by · Published Oct 8, 2018

Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes? The Rest of Us Just Live Here, It's All In Your Head

Libraries Week runs from 8 - 13 October 2018. As this year’s theme is wellbeing, we’ve put together a list of our favourite comforting and nurturing YA books.

See also:

Wonder, by R. J. Palacio

“‘My name is August. I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.’

“Auggie wants to be an ordinary 10-year-old. He does ordinary things - eating ice cream, playing on his Xbox. He feels ordinary - inside. But ordinary kids don’t make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds. Ordinary kids aren’t stared at wherever they go.

“Born with a terrible facial abnormality, Auggie has been home-schooled by his parents his whole life. Now, for the first time, he’s being sent to a real school. All he wants is to be accepted. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, underneath it all?”

Mind Your Head, by Juno Dawson, Olivia Hewitt & Gemma Correll

“We all have a mind, so we all need to take care of our mental health as much as we need to take care of our physical health. And the first step is being able to talk about our mental health.

“Juno Dawson leads the way with this frank, factual and funny book, with added information and support from clinical psychologist Dr Olivia Hewitt. Covering topics from anxiety and depression to addiction, self-harm and personality disorders, James and Olivia talk clearly and supportively about a range of issues facing young people’s mental health - whether fleeting or long-term - and how to manage them, with real-life stories from young people around the world.”

Open Your Mind: learn to deal with the big stuff in life, by Gemma Cairney & Aurelia Lange

“Full of honest and practical advice from Gemma Cairney and a whole host of trained professionals and real people, Open Your Mind is the best friend of a book everyone needs. From stress, trauma, and anxiety, to your place in the world and everything in between. It includes chapters on anxiety, depression, addiction, politics, our natural world, and feminism.”

Open Your Heart: learn to love your life and love yourself, by Gemma Cairney & Aurelia Lange

“Full of honest and practical advice from The Surgery agony aunt Gemma Cairney and a whole host of trained professionals and real people, Open Your Heart is a best friend in a book. From heartbreak and heartache to body image and everything in between, it will help you learn to love your body, your friends and your family, and tell you what to do if things go wrong.”

The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky

“Charlie is a shy and introspective boy, a wallflower always standing on the edge of the action. We learn about him through the letters he writes to someone of an undisclosed name, age and gender.”

Positively Teenage: a positively brilliant guide to teenage well-being, by Nicola Morgan

Positively Teenage gives you tools to approach your teenage years with optimism and understanding and to develop real wellbeing for life. The media so often portray adolescence negatively but this book shows you how to approach these years far more positively so that you can really flourish and be in control.

“You’ll find simple strategies to develop a positive attitude, growth mindset, self-understanding, determination and resilience and you’ll see how those strengths will help you cope with any challenges, enjoy life and achieve your potential.

“Full of practical, proven strategies for physical and mental health, Positively Teenage will show you lots of ways to flourish physically and mentally allowing you to take control of many areas of your life. With these new strengths and skills, you can survive any storms and thrive on the challenges of your exciting life.”

Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes?, by Holly Bourne

“Welcome to Camp Reset, a summer camp with a difference. A place offering a shot at ‘normality’ for Olive, a girl on the edge, and for the new friends she never expected to make - who each have their own reasons for being there. Luckily Olive has a plan to solve all their problems. But how do you fix the world when you can’t fix yourself?”

It’s All In Your Head, by Rae Earl

“What I hope you take away from this book: good Mexican food deserves to go viral; good underwear never features the word ‘string’; good mental health is the single most important thing you need to live a happy life.

“I don’t have a psychology degree - in fact, I once tried to throw a typewriter at a child psychiatrist (this was in the days before MacBook pros) - but I do have experience, understanding and coping mechanisms to help you get your sh*t together.

“From anxiety and eating disorders to OCD and psychosis, I want to help break down taboos surrounding mental health conditions (which directly affect 1 in 4 of us each year - you are NOT alone) and help you come out the other side happier and healthier.”

The Rest of Us Just Live Here, by Patrick Ness

“This bold, irreverent novel powerfully asks what if you weren’t the ‘chosen one’? The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death? What if you were like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up his high school. Again.

“Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life. Even if your best friend might just be the God of mountain lions!”

Looking After Your Mental Health, by Alice James, Louie Stowell, Nancy Leschnikoff & Freya Harrison

“The mental of health of children and teenagers hits the headlines on a regular basis, with more and more young people reporting mental health difficulties. This book provides a gentle guide to good mental health, with input from experts in both psychology and psychiatry.”

Sophie Green

Sophie Green

I work for the Suffolk Libraries stock team. I also write children’s fiction, short stories and comedy. Visit my website.