Battling depression and anxiety is no easy task. It’s hard work that can take a long time to control. Having support in the form of friends and family can be a huge stepping stone. But it all comes down to the individual to make that step. Being aware of what you are feeling or what a loved one is experiencing, can be a huge help. Acknowledging that there needs to be improvement and guidance is what these 5 books are for. 


On Edge: A Journey through Anxiety by Andrea Petersen

5 books | Mental Health | Kiss and Tell

Andrea Petersen was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder at the age of twenty. However, she later realized she has had panic attacks since childhood. Every physical sensation overwhelmed her. The fear of going to the movies, the sound of highways, or licking envelopes were a nightmare. When she had a name for her diagnosis that was the beginning of her mastering control over it. Petersen’s personal story talks about the biology of anxiety and the research to highlight ways of a new treatment. The treatments include drugs and non-drug options. Petersen explores genetics and certain environments that play into mental illnesses, including family history.

Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig

5 books | Mental Health | Kiss and Tell

Haig describes his journey with depression by reading and writing. Day by day he would try to tackle the challenges with the love and support of his family and girlfriend (now his wife), Andrea. 

Matt’s tone is frank when explaining his experience with depression. It helps inspire those who are diagnosed and leaves readers illuminated by the journey. Using a present tone as if talking to himself, he goes further to show that there is a light at the end of the tunnel; small joys and moments bring happiness and are reminders that there is always a reason to live. 

Young Adult Fiction

How it Feels to Float by Helena Fox

5 books | Mental Health | Kiss and Tell

Biz knows how to float. Biz has her mom, the twins, and her friends. She has Grace. And her dad. Biz has a dad who loves her so much. Loves her to bits. But Biz doesn’t say anything, her dark thoughts linger. So, she keeps everything to herself. She keeps kissing Grace to herself, how her dad died when she was six. Biz is just floating like everything is fine. 

But what happens at the beach makes Biz feel undone. Dad disappears, including the comfort she felt. It might be easier to float completely all the way. Or stay longer, find her father, and somehow bring him back. But there is a possibility that there is another way Biz can’t seem to see yet. 

This heartfelt story about a daughter and father, with themes of depression and loss, will have you teary-eyed. 

How to be Happy (Or at Least Less Sad) by Lee Crutchley

5 books | Mental Health | Kiss and Tell

A creative workbook that has a series of engaging prompts. This writes it yourself notebook with blanks helps readers see things in a new light. The activities are surprising and supportive. To help rediscover the joys of every day and feel a little less sad. This workbook is an outlet for personal use, a secret diary, a place that is safe. Let this notebook guide you to a fulfilling life. (All Ages Welcome) 

You’ll Come Back to Yourself by Michaela Angemeer

5 books | Mental Health | Kiss and Tell

If you enjoy poetry from Rupi Kaur dive into this collection of poetry and prose. Many of the writing pieces are inspired by the modern way of dating and broken relationships. Themes of body image, depression, woman power, and lost love. In three sections: Holding On, Ouroboros, and Letting Go; this collection is a journey to self-discovery.

For those who need a better understanding of what a mental illness is and how to treat it; these memoirs and young adult fiction novels are recommended for better understanding what Anxiety, Depression, and other mental illnesses are and how each journey can lead to healing and acceptance.

Each of the books mentioned is beneficial to read if you or someone you love is dealing with mental health. Young adult fiction can be seen as doesn’t apply to me if you are older than 20 however we are positive that the books recommended are applicable to all ages.

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