10 Books for Teens and Young Adults to Support Mental Health

Did you know that reading books can improve your mental health? Not only can reading provide entertainment and an escape from daily stressors, but it can also have therapeutic effects. According to this article from Psychology Today, reading can help individuals develop resilience and subdue the effects of multiple mental health struggles, including depressive disorders. As numerous psychological studies have shown, reading fiction amplifies our ability to empathize and can prepare individuals for difficult experiences by exposing them to a simulated version of that experience. Similarly, reading memoirs about other people’s experiences with mental illness and their road to recovery can assist one’s own journey toward mental health. 

As essayist Thomas Macaulay wrote in 1835, “Literature has saved my life and my reason. Even now, I dare not, in the intervals of business, remain alone for a minute without a book in my hand.”


Life Inside My Mind by Jessica Burkhart 

Brave Face by Shaun David Hutchinson

Don’t Call Me Crazy: 33 Voices Start the Conversation about Mental Health edited by Kelly Jensen

Hope Nation: YA Authors Share Personal Moments of Inspiration edited by Rose Brock

The re­silien­t ­teen: 10 key skill­s ­to bounce back­ from set­back­s and ­turn stress in­to ­suc­cess by  Sheela Raja


Who Put This Song On by Morgan Parker

American Road Trip by Patrick Flores-Scott

Home Home by Lisa Allen-Agostini

Fiction available on Libby

My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram