10 YA books dealing with anxiety

I don’t and won’t talk about it a lot, because it is just the kind of person I am and, if you don’t ask, I won’t tell, but for the sake of this blog post, I’m going to say it again: I have anxiety.Β 

I’m always seeking books with great mental health representation, as it is a topic that matters a great deal to me and, when I find this or these books that I can really, deeply relate to, well I’m thrilled and happy and, even if sometimes it’s intense and hard to read, it’s also so, so rewarding to find parts of yourself in the pages of a book.

I’m having flashbacks of Camp Rock and Jonas Brothers at the moment for a number of reasons you might be aware of okay excuse me while I quietly sob in a corner okay

Today, I thought I’d share some recommendations of young adult books I’ve read with anxiety representation. Obviously, these are personal thoughts and, if I related to these books and the way they portrayed mental health, this might not be the case for everyone. I hope you’ll enjoy this little list and please, please feel free to recommend more books to me in comments, if you have some. Always, always looking to make my TBR grow (even if it makes me have a bookish existential crisis afterwards, oooops).

πŸ“ Related blog posts : You can check out all of the blog posts in the Shattering Stigmas Event I hosted last October, if you’re interested in mental health, mental health books and more.

You can click on the covers to go to goodreads, if you want to make your TBR grow!

Eliza and Her Monsters, Francesca Zappia

πŸ“‹Β Status : Read | Rating : 5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž I have a special relationship with Eliza and Her Monsters, because it’s the first book I could really, really see myself into, a book that really, got me, somehow. This book has such an amazing main character, I adored the story, the characters, how realistic it all was and JUST READ THIS OKAY.

πŸ“– Read my full review of Eliza and Her Monsters

How To Disappear, Sharon Huss Roat

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž This book isn’t really hyped, but if you ask me, it should be? I really found the social anxiety portrayal relatable and interesting, liked the story SO much and its characters, too and it almost made me cry. Definitely recommend.

πŸ“– Read my full review of How To Disappear

Starfish, Akemi Dawn Bowman

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4,5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž Starfish has been recommended to me many, many times and naturally, I was very nervous to read it. I’m SO happy that I did, because damn, what a book. The main character Kiko deals with social anxiety and I could relate to her so, so much. Moreover, this was a beautiful book to read with great writing, childhood friends and ugh I loved this.

πŸ“– Read my full review of Starfish.

You Asked For Perfect, Laura Silverman

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Žthis is a new 2019 favorite book and, if you ever struggled/struggle with overachievement and anxiety and academic-related anxiety, I 300% recommend that book. Even if you’re not. This is a stunningly good book with such great representation and I will be screaming about it for the end of times okay.

πŸ“– Read my full review of You Asked For Perfect.Β 

I Was Born For This, Alice Oseman

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”ŽOkay, I’m far from being an international star from a boys band, buuuuuuut… one of the main characters in this incredible book, Jimmy, deals with anxiety and panic attacks and I could relate so badly it hurted sometimes. SUCH a brilliant book, friends. Also, boys band and fangirling books are so my thing.

πŸ“– Read my full review of I Was Born For This.

Under Rose-Tainted Skies, Louise Gornall

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4,5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž I already mentioned this book recently, but I found the way it tackles mental illness absolutely brilliant. It deals with anxiety, agoraphobia and OCD in such a realistic, engrossing, heartbreaking way, I loved it SO much. It can be an intense and triggering read, but it’s really, really good.

Queens of Geek, Jen Wilde

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4,5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž I love Jen Wilde’s books SO much. Queens of Geek was my very first book by her and I fell in love with these characters. Taylor, one of the main characters, has anxiety and I could relate to her a whole lot and also I adored her. This was such a sweet, heartwarming book.

πŸ“– Read my full review of Queens of Geek.

Final Draft, Riley Redgate

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”Ž Another slightly underrated, but really amazing book here, friends. I really liked everything this author wrote and Final Draft was no exception. This book has a main character dealing with anxiety, especially when it comes to her writing and hello me and this also had the cutest f/f romance and diverse characters and such a good book!!

πŸ“– Read my full review of Final Draft.

Emergency Contact, Mary H.K.Choi

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”ŽThis book has a texting romance and college-aged characters and the softest romance and ughhhhhhhhhh AND it has anxiety rep, too and it is one of my favorite books of all times and I don’t know how to talk about this without screaming so read this.

πŸ“– Read my full review of Emergency Contact.

Am I Normal Yet?, Holly Bourne

πŸ“‹ Status : Read | Rating : 4,5 🌟

My thoughts πŸ”ŽTHIS!BOOK!SO!GOOD!!! The main character deals with OCD and Generalized Anxiety Disorder and, well… this was not an easy book to read, at times, but it was such a good, important read and a great portrayal of mental health, too. Definitely recommending it to everyone.

πŸ“– Read my full review of Am I Normal Yet?

πŸ“š Some YA books with anxiety rep that I haven’t had a chance to read just yet

Did you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them, or do you want to read some of them?

What are some books with mental health rep – especially anxiety – you’ve read and loved? I would love some recommendations, so let me know in comments!



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Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. πŸ“š |🌍 | πŸ’ž Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

147 thoughts on “10 YA books dealing with anxiety

  1. Wonderful list! I also struggle with anxiety (and panic attacks), so I really like seeing it represented in books. I’ve only read Am I Normal Yet? from this list and agreed, IT’S AMAZING. Underwater by Marisa Reichardt also has great anxiety representation!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Kyra, I’m glad you liked Am I Normal Yet and I hope you’ll give these other books a try πŸ˜€
      Ohhh that’s good to know, I haven’t heard about this one, will check it out πŸ˜€ Thank you! ❀


  2. This is such a lovely and important post! I really enjoyed Emergency Contact as well and I think that it does do a fantastic job of discussing anxiety. There are so many here that I have yet to read, so thank you for adding to my growing list! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh wow, you have anxiety and were able to read these? Girl, I wish I was as brave! In my case, they act as triggers, unfortunately… I’m still hoping to read one that will be relatable and comforting rather than upsetting! I might give some of these a go sometime, I mean, based on your post they sound really good πŸ™‚
    Thanks so much for sharing, Marie ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was, though I’m not going to like, with taking a lot of care, some of these books were a little triggering, at times. I’m glad I could read them, but I definitely recommend caution if you tend to be triggered by these themes ❀
      I hope that you'll give these one a try someday when you're feeling like it, they really were all amazing and I adored them so much, they were so relatable, too ❀
      Thank you so much, Sophie ❀ ❀


  4. This is such an amazing list and I agree that good representation is sooo important. I have anxiety too and reading about these characters and being able to relate is so important. I LOVED Eliza and her Monsters, I Was Born For This, Queens of Geek, and I really, really really want ot get to Emergency Contact soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I AM SO HERE FOR THIS POST. Thank you for all the amazing rec’s! I also have anxiety and finding books that represent that feels so important and also helpful. Also, anxiety can affect people in so many different ways so I feel like I ALWAYS learn something new with these kind of books!

    Definitely adding a few of these to my wishlist. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Why hello Marie πŸ˜‰
    I haven’t checked out these books yet, the other one I know which is more Middle Grade I suppose is Finding Audrey. I always want to read more YA books with Anxiety rep but it kind of triggers me as well so I have to be careful. I definitely am adding a bunch of these to my TBR though!

    Fab post xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. HANNAH LOVE ❀ It's been too long, I miss you, it's so good to see you here, I hope you've been well ❀
      I get that – some of these books can be quite triggering, not going to lie, definitely take care of yourself and read them when you feel ready! ❀
      Thank you so, so much love! ❀ Sending you tons of love xx


  7. This is a fantastic list that I especially like because it shows the huge difference in anxiety experiences as well as the variety of ways it can impact lives. I highly recommend The Upside of Unrequited Love – Albertini is amazing and anxiety isn’t really as big a part of the story as it is normalized through conversations between characters.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you, so happy you enjoyed it! πŸ™‚ You’re so right, every experience is different and it’s so important to showcast mental health in books, too. ❀
      I haven't read that book, thank you SO, so much for recommending it, I'll have to check it out! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Great post! I’m always on the look out for more books with anxiety. My personal favourite is 10 things I can see from here by Carrie Mac , i definitely related to that one!

    Liked by 1 person

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