100 books like Furiously Happy

By Jenny Lawson,

Here are 100 books that Furiously Happy fans have personally recommended if you like Furiously Happy. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Haunted

Jason McGathey Author Of The Doom Statues

From my list on horror featuring a cursed location.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been a lifelong horror reader, really since first stumbling onto Stephen King in the 9th grade. There’s something about that genre that has held a particular fascination for me through the years, probably because the best works are some combination of suspenseful, well-written, and cathartic, as they really get your mind racing as to what you might do yourself in a given situation. If you’re lucky, they might even have something to say about the human condition as a whole. But given this prolonged interest and exposure to horror, it’s only natural I would eventually progress to giving it a stab myself.

Jason's book list on horror featuring a cursed location

Jason McGathey Why did Jason love this book?

This is a unique entry in that the cursed place is a framing device, for this collection of mostly disturbing tales. For his first-ever collection of short stories, Palahniuk brings his wretched cast of characters to a haunted house, where each in turn offers his or her own demented tale. They don’t all work, but a number of the stories really stick with you, and this spooky old house at the center of it ratchets the intensity up another level—it’s not a static situation they are in, there, so the plot progresses to its own warped conclusion on this front as well. 

By Chuck Palahniuk,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Haunted as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Haunted" is a novel made up of stories: twenty-three of them to be precise. Twenty-three of the most horrifying, hilarious, mind-blowing, stomach-churning tales you'll ever encounter - sometimes all at once. They are told by the people who have all answered the ad headlined 'Artists Retreat: Abandon your life for three months'. They are led to believe that here they will leave behind all the distractions of 'real life' that are keeping them from creating the masterpiece that is in them. But 'here' turns out to be a cavernous and ornate old theatre where they are utterly isolated from the…


Book cover of Looking for Alaska

Kristina Parro Author Of Lucky: A Novel

From my list on if you love Taylor Swift.

Why am I passionate about this?

Kristina Parro is a long-time Taylor Swift fan who dove deep into the stories and lyrics of folklore to help her overcome the tumultuous period she spent as a front-line healthcare worker during the pandemic. She discovered layers of deep meaning and surprising connections in the album, as well as throughout Taylor’s entire collection, that led her down a rabbit hole of her own. A quest that brought her to a more enlightened state of being. Lucky is Parro’s first novel. She's currently working on another adult-fiction manuscript. You can also find her hosting a live, weekly show on Instagram, during which she has insightful conversations with authors, artists, thinkers, creatives, and Taylor Swift fans! 

Kristina's book list on if you love Taylor Swift

Kristina Parro Why did Kristina love this book?

My long-time favorite writer, John Green, is another Swiftie! In 2014, after he posted on social media about her 1989 album, Taylor Swift took to Tumblr to proclaim that John Green was (also) her favorite author. While John is most well-known for The Fault in Our Stars (or more recently, his TikTok), Looking for Alaska, his debut, is always my recommendation. Looking For Alaska is packed with teenage nostalgia that hits you like a gut punch. "Sad, Beautiful, Tragic" for bookworms. I read it early on in high school and it sparked a literary awakening within me. I realized that books can hold deeper, philosophical meaning; that by diving deep and soaking it all in, I could learn more about myself and this crazy thing we call reality. 

By John Green,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Looking for Alaska as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

The award-winning, genre-defining debut from John Green, the #1 bestselling author of The Anthropocene Reviewed and The Fault in Our Stars

Winner of the Michael L. Printz Award • A Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist • A New York Times Bestseller • A USA Today Bestseller • NPR’s Top Ten Best-Ever Teen Novels • TIME magazine’s 100 Best Young Adult Novels of All Time • A PBS Great American Read Selection • Millions of copies sold!

First drink. First prank. First friend. First love.

Last words.

Miles Halter is fascinated by famous last words—and tired of his safe life…


Book cover of Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

Michelle L. Teichman Author Of The Space Between

From my list on young adult books for women of all ages.

Why am I passionate about this?

At heart, I’m still just a girl. I don’t think I’ll ever grow out of wanting to experience the excitement of first kisses, first loves, and of coming out, when everything was new and exciting, and the world was full of promise. That’s why we return to YA even as adults. To feel the butterflies of a first crush, the fluttering of first love, and the agony of first loss. Those transformative books, the ones that change the trajectory of our lives, are usually young adult novels. I wrote The Space Between to give readers a story to fall in love with and take with them the rest of their lives.

Michelle's book list on young adult books for women of all ages

Michelle L. Teichman Why did Michelle love this book?

This book will make you question everything you’ve ever thought about your sanity.

The incredible true story of Susannah Cahalan took the world by storm when it topped the charts to #1 New York Times Bestseller and was made into a film. Cahalan’s intense journey from New York Post investigative reporter to psychiatric lockdown patient spans only one month, a month that nearly ended her life.

A reader once described my books as ‘unputdownable,’ and I’m happy to share that label with Brain on Fire. Riveting, frightening, and incredibly moving, I couldn’t read quickly enough as Susannah fought to reclaim her sanity and her life.

Based on her article “The Month of Madness,” this book is one of the best about a young woman’s struggle to find and reclaim herself.

By Susannah Cahalan,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Brain on Fire as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Brain on Fire is the stunning debut from journalist and author Susannah Cahalan, recounting the real-life horror story of how a sudden and mysterious illness put her on descent into a madness for which there seemed to be no cure

'My first serious blackout marked the line between sanity and insanity. Though I would have moments of lucidity over the coming days and weeks, I would never again be the same person ...'

Susannah Cahalan was a happy, clever, healthy twenty-four-year old. Then one day she woke up in hospital, with no memory of what had happened or how she…


Book cover of #Girlboss

Mary Ramsey Author Of Dakota Son

From my list on LGBTQ superheroes.

Why am I passionate about this?

During my time on this earth, I have done everything and nothing. I’ve traveled the world during my time in the military, but all that made me want to do was work a normal retail job, with normal scheduled hours. Now that I reside in a limbo where there is a creature inside me that can only exist via my writing and art. And I’m certain I’m not alone. I want to inspire retail warriors, minimum wage heroes; anyone who spends their days rattling around in their own head, I dare you to turn the salt shaker and release the superhero inside.  

Mary's book list on LGBTQ superheroes

Mary Ramsey Why did Mary love this book?

When life brings lemons make lemonade, when life dumps a load of garbage sell it on eBay. I can relate to protagonist Sophia, as a former eBay seller and a San Francisco native lost in her own existence. This book reads like a fairy tale; a girl given every opportunity in one of the most expensive cities in the world, but she’s stuck in a filthy apartment filled with thrifted clothes and day-old pizza. Then one day she discovers her passion. Slowly the pieces fall into place allowing her to create the brand, Nasty Gal. 

This book is a must-read for anyone trapped in a daydream; the finish line is out there just waiting for you to find it.

By Sophia Amoruso,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

*#GIRLBOSS NETFLIX ORIGINAL OUT NOW*

In this New York Times bestselling sensation, founder and Executive Chairman of Nasty Gal Sophia Amoruso shares her story and inspires women everywhere to join the #GIRLBOSS movement.

'#GIRLBOSS is more than a book . . . #GIRLBOSS is a movement' Lena Dunham

'A millennial alternative to Lean In' New York Magazine

'A compellingly motivational read' The Telegraph

'The book you need in your life' Marie Claire

*Winner of the 2014 Goodreads Choice Award for Best Business Book*

In the space of ten years, Sophia Amoruso has gone from high-school dropout to founder and Executive…


Book cover of The No-Bullshit Guide to Depression

JoEllen Notte Author Of In It Together: Navigating Depression with Partners, Friends, and Family

From my list on helping you talk about mental health.

Why am I passionate about this?

According to my mother, my first words were, “what’s that?” and I believe that’s indicative of the level of curiosity with which I try to approach life. That curiosity led me to write books about how we can better love ourselves and each other when depression is gumming up the works. Talking about mental illness is hard, and I aim to make it easier. I’m not a doctor or therapist. I am best described as a “sex writer with a theatre degree” and I like to say my work focuses on sex, mental health, and how none of us are broken.  

JoEllen's book list on helping you talk about mental health

JoEllen Notte Why did JoEllen love this book?

We've reached the only actual “how to do mental illness” book on this list and it’s an all time favorite of mine.

Skoczen is not a doctor or a therapist and isn’t afraid to drop a couple of f-bombs when talking about mental health… so, yeah, he’s a lot like me, which may be part of why I love this book so much.

Engaging, reassuring, and full of concrete strategies for navigating depression both as someone with it and as someone who loves someone with it, I have recommended this book for years. 

By Steven Skoczen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The No-Bullshit Guide to Depression as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Probably the best self-help book on depression I’ve ever read." — Joe Rhinewine, Director and Psychologist, Portland Mindfulness Therapy

Funny, insightful, and relentlessly honest, The No-Bullshit Guide to Depression is the manual for life with depression that everyone should have been given. It's the toolbox you need to build a life you love.

The No-Bullshit Guide to Depression covers day-to-day truths like how food, sleep, and sex get weird and practical insights like how to handle social relationships. It delves into the deep dark places and talks about how to survive the suicidal thoughts that can come with the worst…


Book cover of Rising Strong: The Reckoning. the Rumble. the Revolution.

JoEllen Notte Author Of In It Together: Navigating Depression with Partners, Friends, and Family

From my list on helping you talk about mental health.

Why am I passionate about this?

According to my mother, my first words were, “what’s that?” and I believe that’s indicative of the level of curiosity with which I try to approach life. That curiosity led me to write books about how we can better love ourselves and each other when depression is gumming up the works. Talking about mental illness is hard, and I aim to make it easier. I’m not a doctor or therapist. I am best described as a “sex writer with a theatre degree” and I like to say my work focuses on sex, mental health, and how none of us are broken.  

JoEllen's book list on helping you talk about mental health

JoEllen Notte Why did JoEllen love this book?

Shame is a big piece of the mental illness puzzle; it can be both a symptom and what keeps us from reaching out when we struggle. I didn’t really understand that until I read Brené Brown’s extensive work on the subject of shame. 

I recommend Rising Strong specifically because in addition to helping to understand the shame piece, it gave me a useful tool. Brown talks about the stories we tell ourselves that are often rooted in our fears. For me that resonated because when my depression gets worse my brain tells me darker and darker stories about everything.

This book helped me see that and communicate it. Learning to say “the story I'm telling myself right now is” was a relationship game changer, especially during dark times.

By Brené Brown,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Rising Strong as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Outstanding condition, great copy! Order from the best! We strive to be the best on Amazon with respect to Customer Service, Product Description, and Timely Shipping. Thanks for choosing Big B's Multimedia Worldwide for your media needs. Check out our other great products here on Amazon.com!


Book cover of Brilliant Bylines: a Biographical Anthology of Notable Newspaperwomen in America

Silvia Pettem Author Of In Search of the Blonde Tigress: The Untold Story of Eleanor Jarman

From my list on mysterious and intriguing women in history.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been writing for decades, as one genre evolved into another. Local Colorado history led to the identification of "Boulder Jane Doe," a murder victim. During that journey I learned a lot about criminal investigations and forensics. I devoured old movies (especially film noir), and I focused on social history including mysterious and intriguing women. Midwest Book Review (see author book links) credits In Search of the Blonde Tigress as "rescuing" Eleanor Jarman "from obscurity." So true! Despite Eleanor's notoriety as "the most dangerous woman alive," she actually was a very ordinary woman. I've now found my niche pulling mysterious and intriguing women out of the shadows.

Silvia's book list on mysterious and intriguing women in history

Silvia Pettem Why did Silvia love this book?

Brilliant Bylines is more than a historical narrative of women in journalism, as it also includes samples of the women's writings.

My favorite is Elizabeth Cochrane Seaman, better known as "Nellie Bly." She was not unknown, but she was mysterious in her own way and certainly was intriguing. Not only did she travel around the world in 1890, but she also feigned mental illness in order to get the inside scoop on an insane asylum. I named another cat after her, as well.

By Barbara Belford,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Examines the lives and careers of 24 American female journalists from the 1840's to the 1980's and provides examples of their work


Book cover of Eight Key Brain Areas of Mental Health and Illness

Sharon L. Cohen Author Of Disaster Mental Health Community Planning: A Manual for Trauma-Informed Collaboration

From my list on helping individuals respond to traumatic events.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sometimes you need to search for the next roads to take in your life; other times these roads approach you. I was looking for new ways to use my long-term communication and mental health advocacy skills and then, sadly, the Sandy Hook shooting occurred. I immediately wanted to help community members ease their pain and assist cities nationwide to greatly improve their disaster mental health response. I never expected a pandemic would arrive only two months after I published, making my book all the more important. Now climate change is exacerbating our already stressful times, and we must act to stem mental health issues before they become out of hand.  

Sharon's book list on helping individuals respond to traumatic events

Sharon L. Cohen Why did Sharon love this book?

We are continually learning how the brain works through the work of neuroscientists. Dr. Sweeton uses her knowledge in the field to give readers a view into our brain and what we know at the present time about its functioning, how it is affected by mental illness, and what changes can occur through brain-based therapy. We have made great strides in helping individuals with such illnesses as schizophrenia and bipolar and learning how disorders such as PTSD occur and impact the brain. The book’s information is reader-friendly. The more we know about this fascinating area of the body, the better treatments that can be developed to help those who suffer from trauma-impacting events become more resilient and whole. 

By Jennifer Sweeton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Eight Key Brain Areas of Mental Health and Illness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Recent advances in affective neuroscience reveal long-held secrets of mental health and illness in the brain. However, the gap between brain science and clinical practice is wide, and many clinicians find neuroscience to be tedious, overly technical and laborious to learn. Eight Key Brain Areas of Mental Health and Illness bridges this gap, providing key information about the neuroscience of mental illness so clinicians can apply it in their work.

In this handbook, clinical psychologist and best-selling author Jennifer Sweeton details the eight main areas of the brain affected by mental illness, how brain changes show up in the therapy…


Book cover of Mad Girl

Lottie Phillips Author Of Sunshine at Daisy's Guesthouse

From my list on to make you laugh and cry at the same time.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love romantic comedies with an emphasis on comedy. I’m not in love with sugary-sweet romance because I don’t think it’s true to life. I know that I laugh daily because my life is very 'Bridget Jones'. You know a book genre is strong when you can describe yourself as a character written in the late nineties. My own books are full of awkward moments, endearing observations, and humour that pushes the boundaries. Why? Because what are we if we are not fallible and vulnerable to whatever life throws at us?

Lottie's book list on to make you laugh and cry at the same time

Lottie Phillips Why did Lottie love this book?

I picked this book up as I suffer with OCD and welcomed a genuine account of the effects it has on day-to-day life.

This, however, was just that but also gloriously uplifting and funny. I both cried and laughed, and sometimes a mixture! So, although this is non-fiction it follows Bryony’s journey as if following a protagonist in a novel, making it compelling and heart-wrenching.

By Bryony Gordon,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A new Sunday Times bestseller from Bryony Gordon, Telegraph columnist and author of the bestselling The Wrong Knickers. For readers who enjoyed Matt Haig's Reasons to Stay Alive and Ruby Wax's Sane New World, Mad Girl is a shocking, funny, unpredictable, heart-wrenching, raw and jaw-droppingly truthful celebration of life with mental illness.

'I loved it. A brilliant fast and funny and frank look at something that absolutely needs to be talked about in this way' Matt Haig

Bryony Gordon has OCD.

It's the snake in her brain that has told her ever since she was a teenager that her world…


Book cover of The Last Asylum: A Memoir of Madness in Our Times

Frazer Lee Author Of Greyfriars Reformatory

From my list on making you the inmate of a sinister institution.

Why am I passionate about this?

A lifelong horror fan, I have always been fascinated by haunted landscapes and creepy buildings. My childhood in the Midlands of England prepared me for my career as a horror writer and filmmaker with its abundance of spooky ruins and foggy canal paths. I have since explored ancient sites all across the U.K. and Europe and my novels are inspired by these field trips into the uncanny, where the contemporary every day rubs shoulders with the ancient and occult. Places become characters in their own right in my work and I think this list of books celebrates that. I hope you find them as disturbing and thought-provoking as I have.

Frazer's book list on making you the inmate of a sinister institution

Frazer Lee Why did Frazer love this book?

I once worked on a film shoot at the infamous Friern Barnet Asylum in London, an imposing building that boasts the longest corridor in Europe at over a third of a mile long. It was my job to lock up after filming was over each night, and to do so, I had to walk the long corridor with just a flashlight for company… and the ghosts rumoured to haunt the building! I have never forgotten the feeling of dread and despair in that place, and my heart went out to the patients who were isolated in the creepy basement wards. Barbara Taylor gives an inside perspective on this fearsome institution in her book, which is both an achingly honest account of mental illness and addiction, and a critique of community care.

By Barbara Taylor,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Last Asylum as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Last Asylum is Barbara Taylor's haunting memoir of her journey through the UK mental health system.

A RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK

SHORTLISTED FOR THE RBC TAYLOR PRIZE

In July 1988, Barbara Taylor, then an acclaimed young historian, was admitted to what had once been England's largest psychiatric institution: Colney Hatch Lunatic Asylum, later known as Friern Hospital.

This searingly honest, thought-provoking and beautifully written memoir is the story of the author's madness years, set inside the wider story of the death of the asylum system in the twentieth century. It is a meditation on her own experience…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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