14th to 20th May is Mental Health Awareness Week and at this time of year when many of our students are working hard revising for external exams it seems a good opportunity to remind everyone of our Shelf Help Collection of books.

As well as factual books on coping with stress, anxiety, self-esteem or enhancing wellbeing, fiction can be helpful.

The Reading Agency website explains: ‘It’s not just self-help books that British teens are turning to for support with mental health conditions and difficult life experiences. Young people between the ages of 13 and 18 are cracking the spines of well-known novels such as ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time’ and ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’. Also proving popular were non-fiction titles including ‘Mind your Head’ by Juno Dawson and ‘The Reason I Jump: One Boy’s Voice from the Silence of Autism’, by Naoki Higashida.

The top ten most popular books from the list, according to Public Lending Right data, include:

  1. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon
  2. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
  3. Every Day by David Levithan
  4. The Reason I Jump: One Boy’s Voice from the Silence of Autism by Naoki Higashida
  5. Quiet the Mind by Matthew Johnstone
  6. The Teenage Guide to Stress by Nicola Morgan
  7. Blame My Brain: The Amazing Teenage Brain Revealed by Nicola Morgan
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
  9. Mind Your Head by Juno Dawson
  10. Stuff that Sucks by Ben Sedley

A really useful recent addition to library stock is TV and Radio presenter Katie Thistleton’s ‘Dear Katie’ with advice on real-life problems and expert tips. Written in an ‘Agony Aunt’ style this accessible book offers sound advice in a friendly style from someone who has experienced emotional struggles growing up.

For more reading lists and a list of top Mood Boosting Books chosen by young people last year visit the library blog