If you read books, you can learn about everything that happens in your life, even if you don’t like what you read. These books about depression show how hard it is for people to get out of despair, no matter how heartbreaking or funny they are. If you’re struggling with mental illness, this mix of moving novels, compelling memoirs, and nonfiction might help you understand what you’re going through a little better. It might also inspire you or bring some lightheartedness to a hard subject. These books are worth your time.
Fiction Books About Depression
The Bell Jar
They will have a lot to talk about in this Sylvia Plath book. There are many things that make Esther Greenwood a smart and successful young woman. She is also in the middle of a mental break down. The Bell Jar isn’t just important because it’s well-written, but also because Plath herself was depressed and died in 1963.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
When you read The Perks of Being a Wallflower in high school, you learn a lot about how to be an adult. It’s been a New York Times bestseller for many years now. Over the death of a friend, Charlie is struggling to find his place in a world of new friends, dating, family problems, and a trauma from his past. The popular young adult book was made into a movie in 2012 with Logan Lerman and Emma Watson in the lead roles.
It’s Kind of a Funny Story
That means those of us who understand the pressures to do well will connect with Craig in this young adult book set in New York. Craig has a hard time competing with his classmates after he moves to an elite high school. He soon turns to drugs and depression. A twist of fate led him to the adult unit of a psychiatric hospital, where he found a new goal in life.
Thirteen Reasons Why
A lot of people know this beautiful book by Jay Asher from its Netflix adaptation, but the original book is still worth reading. The story is weird and can’t be put down: Hannah killed herself two weeks ago, but Clay found out that she left him a series of tapes to explain why. When Clay goes on the morbid scavenger hunt Hannah has set up for him, what will he find?
Looking for Alaska
Fans of John Green won’t want to miss this 2005 book, which won the Michael L. Printz Award in 2005. Leaving home for boarding school in Alabama, Miles meets a new group of people. Among them is Alaska, a smart girl who also likes to drink and do drugs. But Miles and his friends won’t be able to live life to the fullest this year.
Silver Linings Playbook
The movie Silver Linings Playbook won an Oscar for best picture. If you liked that movie, you should read Matthew Quick’s original 2008 book of the same name. In Pat, a man with a mental health disorder, it’s hard to accept that he’s no longer with his ex-wife. His life changes when he becomes friends with a young widow and she asks him to join her in a dance competition. He doesn’t know what to expect.
In Impulse, a story of three young adults told in verse, people who like unconventional stories will find a lot to like about it. Vanessa, Tony, and Connor go to a psychiatric hospital after they try to kill themselves. As they get better, the troubled teenagers think about what led them to their lowest point, as well as how they can help each other.
Veronika Decides to Die
He is best known for writing The Alchemist, but he also wrote this story about Veronika, a young woman who tries to kill herself. Following her suicide attempt, Veronika ended up in a hospital. She is told that she has only a few more days to live because of the suicide attempt. Will her death sentence make her value life? He was inspired to write this book after his parents sent him to a mental institution when he was a child.
Virginia Woolf wrote this book in 1925, and it’s a classic for a reason. As the title says: It’s the simple story of an old woman, Mrs. Dalloway, who is about to throw her own party. But as she makes plans, she thinks about the bigger picture of life. A book written by Michael Cunningham was inspired by this Woolf novel. Cunningham said Woolf found “the enormous in the everyday.” This is what he said. It hasn’t been the same since.
My Heart and Other Black Holes
My Heart and Other Black Holes has already made us cry. Aysel hasn’t wanted to live since her father did something bad years ago. But on a website, she meets Roman, a young man with his own painful past, who is willing to help her die. There is a pact that Aysel isn’t sure if she wants to keep.
By the Time You Read This I’ll Be Dead
Julie Anne Peters
She talks about bullying in this book that is both heavy and soft. After trying to kill herself a few times, Daelyn is still sure that she wants to die. When she’s been bullied for a long time, she can’t stand it any longer. But when a kind boy comes up to her at school, she finds a sweetness she’s never known. Is it enough?
Playlist for the Dead
As a fan of music, you should read this Michelle Falkoff book. It’s hard for Sam to come to terms with the fact that his friend Hayden killed himself after they had a fight the night before. He also left Sam a playlist with his suicide note. If the teenager listens hard enough to the music, he might be able to figure out what happened to his friend, but that’s not very likely.