The best books for psychology fans to curl up with after a busy day

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a South African author and avid miner of trivia nuggets. Psychology has always fascinated me and for the past decade, I’ve been lucky enough to make a living writing about the odd and the puzzling, most notably at Listverse.com. I love sharing the most jaw-dropping facts about the human mind, plainly to change the notion that psychology is a dry academic topic. I hope you’ll enjoy the books I’ve suggested - there is something for everyone; from fiction, trivia, and well-being, to a book that puts Batman on the therapy couch!


I wrote...

How to Kill an Earworm: And 500+ Other Psychology Facts You Need to Know

By Jana Louise Smit,

Book cover of How to Kill an Earworm: And 500+ Other Psychology Facts You Need to Know

What is my book about?

Discover why you were always afraid of a monster under your childhood bed and how to recognize “moonwalking,” a little-known form of gaslighting. Covering six branches of psychology, this book is packed with hundreds of unusual facts guaranteed to give you a new perspective on your own mind through entertaining trivia and challenging quiz questions!

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Psych 101: Psychology Facts, Basics, Statistics, Tests, and More!

Jana Louise Smit Why did I love this book?

I chose this book for a trip because it’s compact (easy to pack) and brimming with psychology facts.

Instead of staring at the plane’s ceiling for hours, I disappeared into a fun refresher course on the core ideas of psychology. It’s a great read for anyone who wants to brush up on their foundational concepts in a way that feels natural and entertaining.

By Paul Kleinman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Psych 101 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A hands-on approach to exploring the human mind

Too often, textbooks turn the noteworthy theories, principles, and experiments of psychology into tedious discourse that even Freud would want to repress. Psych 101 cuts out the boring details and statistics, and instead, gives you a lesson in psychology that keeps you engaged - and your synapses firing.

From personality quizzes and the Rorschach Blot Test to B.F. Skinner and the stages of development, this primer for human behavior is packed with hundreds of entertaining psychology basics and quizzes you can't get anywhere else.

So whether you're looking to unravel the intricacies…


Book cover of How to Hygge: The Nordic Secrets to a Happy Life

Jana Louise Smit Why did I love this book?

What sets this book apart from others on the topic is that the author doesn’t drown you in background information.

She focuses on practical steps which even helped a lazy individual like myself (a natural hygge person?) to stick to habits that consistently bring more joy and positivity into my life. 

By Signe Johansen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked How to Hygge as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The “Danish coziness” philosophy is fast becoming the new “French living” in terms of aspirational lifestyle books and blogs. There are countless viral articles comparing the happiness levels of Americans versus Danes. Their homes are more homey; their people are more cheerful. It’s an attitude that defies definition, but there is a name for this slow-moving, stress-free mindset: hygge (pronounced “hoo-ga”). Hygge values the idea of cherishing yourself: candlelight, bakeries, and dinner with friends; a celebration of experiences over possessions, as well as being kind to yourself and treasuring a sense of community.

How to Hygge by chef and author…


Book cover of Paper Ghosts: A Novel of Suspense

Jana Louise Smit Why did I love this book?

As a hardcore fan of psychological thrillers, I’m familiar with all the recurring themes of this genre. But this book was a surprise.

Masterfully written, the author took to my nerves with pliers and kept me hooked with great twists and suspense-craft. I definitely recommend Paper Ghosts to well-read thriller fans who want something fresh and most of all; an unforgettable plot. 

Book cover of Mensa Mind Benders: 100 Logic Games and Puzzles to Improve Your Memory, Exercise Your Brain, and Keep Your Mind Sharp

Jana Louise Smit Why did I love this book?

On some evenings, I like to curl up in bed with a brain-squeezing puzzle.

What I appreciated about this activity book are the various game genres and degrees of difficulty. This allowed me to select a puzzle based on my interest and focus level of the moment.

Overall, it’s a hearty collection of challenges for anyone who loves getting lost in riddles, mazes, and numbers.

By David Millar,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mensa Mind Benders as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Mensa is a huge international organization with hundreds of thousands of members worldwide; it is the oldest and largest High-IQ society, and very well-respected. We have the exclusive right to publish these books with American Mensa. Each of our books will be branded with Mensa's name and logo, and they will help promote the books. This new series will be upbeat, fun, and more attractive than older Mensa publications, along the lines of Mental Floss' series.


Book cover of Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight

Jana Louise Smit Why did I love this book?

The idea of analyzing Batman's mind as if he were a real person intrigued me enough to get this book.

I expected a tongue-in-cheek read but it turned out to be a stunningly well-researched piece of work. What surprised me, even more, was how much I learned about psychology as the author dove deeply into the minds of Batman, his enemies, and his fans.

You might also like...

Thorn City

By Pamela Statz,

Book cover of Thorn City

Pamela Statz

New book alert!

What is my book about?

Dressed to kill and ready to make rent, best friends Lisa and Jamie work as “paid to party” girls at the Rose City Ripe for Disruption gala, a gathering of Portland's elite.

Their evening is derailed when Lisa stumbles across Ellen, a ruthless politician and Lisa’s estranged mother. And to make matters worse, Lisa’s boyfriend, Patrick, crashes the party to meet his new boss, Portland's food cart drug kingpin. Lisa makes a fateful choice that traps her, Jamie, and Patrick in Ellen’s web. In this gripping thriller, Lisa must reconcile a painful past and perilous present.

Thorn City

By Pamela Statz,

What is this book about?

Suspected murder, eclectic food trucks, and artisanal cocaine: just another day in Thorn City.

It’s the night of the Rose City Ripe for Disruption gala—a gathering of Portland’s elite. Dressed to kill in sparkling minidresses, best friends Lisa and Jamie attend as “paid to party” girls. They plan an evening of fake flirtations, karaoke playlists, and of course, grazing the catering.

Past and present collide when Lisa stumbles across Ellen, a ruthless politician who also happens to be Lisa’s estranged mother. Awkward . . . When Lisa was sixteen, Ellen had her kidnapped and taken to the Lost Lake Academy—a…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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