The most recommended books about worry

Who picked these books? Meet our 13 experts.

13 authors created a book list connected to worry, and here are their favorite worry books.
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What type of worry book?


Book cover of How to Stop Worrying and Start Living

Erik Qualman Author Of The Focus Project: The Not So Simple Art of Doing Less

From the list on self improvement and staying focused.

Who am I?

I’ve been in the digital space for 30 years and my breakthrough book was Socialnomics. In this book, I encouraged individuals and organizations to lean into social media and digital, both personally and professionally; emphasizing that this shift wasn’t just for teenagers, that it would change the world more than anything in our lifetime. That it would become a powerful force around business, politics, gaming, and beyond. And, unfortunately, it did. It was even more powerful than I could have imagined. What I didn’t comprehend was that we would lean in too much. I realized I needed to give the anti-venom to Socialnomics. We needed as a society to return to focusing on what matters most.

Erik's book list on self improvement and staying focused

Why did Erik love this book?

One of the greatest days of my professional career was when a media outlet called me a “Digital Dale Carnegie.” They had no idea what a fan I am of Carnegie's work. Carnegie passed away (1955) long before I was born but he continues to have a profound impact on my life. My grandfather, and father have both taken Dale Carnegie Courses. While Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People is wonderful and is one of the best-selling books of all time, my favorite is How to Stop Worrying and Start Living

In our modern world, worry is almost a certainty. We worry as parents, business owners, employees— we never seem to run out of things to worry about. Dale Carnegie’s How to Stop Worrying and Start Living reframed my perspective on the cost of worrying. Eliminating the fear of the unknown is often the first step…

By Dale Carnegie,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The first trade paperback edition of the classic guide to conquering the fears and worries that prevent individuals from living full and happy lives offers practical advice on how to eliminate business and financial anxieties, turn criticism into an advantage, avoid fatigue, and more. Reprint. 25,00

What to Do When You Worry Too Much

By Dawn Huebner, Bonnie Matthews (illustrator),

Book cover of What to Do When You Worry Too Much: A Kid's Guide to Overcoming Anxiety

Brenda Ponnay Author Of It's Not About You, Little Hoo!

From the list on for littles with anxiety.

Who am I?

I'm not really an expert on anxiety other than being an adult who suffers from it. I thought I was normal and everyone felt the way I did until I started looking for books to help my daughter with her panic attacks and I realized I have it too! I've since been diagnosed and lead a pretty great life with the help of therapy and medication. What parents share with their children during nightly story reading or on the couch to read a few books is very bonding and intimate. I think that's the best time for kids to ask their parents questions and share their emotions. My goal is to help those conversations happen.

Brenda's book list on for littles with anxiety

Why did Brenda love this book?

This workbook has a wealth of helpful tips on how to deal with overwhelming anxiety. It’s written simply with great illustrations that really help littles figure out the scary world that surrounds them. I love the example of worries growing like tomato plants. If we want the worries to stop growing, we stop watering them! At the time my daughter was four and we had a huge over-producing tomato garden so this was a perfect illustration for both of us. We set up a time to talk about worries and we kept to that time limit. It helped both of us go through the anxiety instead of getting overwhelmed by it. There is no cure for anxiety and medication is not really an option for small children so dealing with it head-on was the only way that worked for us. This book really gave us both tools. It’s practical and…

By Dawn Huebner, Bonnie Matthews (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked What to Do When You Worry Too Much as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What to Do When You Worry Too Much is an interactive self-help book designed to guide 6-12 year olds and their parents through the cognitive-behavioral techniques most often used in the treatment of generalised anxiety. Engaging, encouraging, and easy to follow, this book educates, motivates, and empowers children to work towards change.

It includes a note to parents by psychologist and author Dawn Huebner, PhD.

The Noisy Classroom

By Angela Shante, Alison Hawkins (illustrator),

Book cover of The Noisy Classroom

Pierce Freelon Author Of Daddy & Me, Side by Side

From the list on children's reads by Black women from North Carolina.

Who am I?

I was born and raised in Durham, North Carolina where I was loved, nurtured, and mentored by several brilliant, creative, and powerful Black women. One of those women was Dr. Maya Angelou, who was close with my Grandmother, Queen Mother Frances Pierce, and was my mom's God-Mother. She and the other authors on this list are all women who I respect professionally and love dearly. I am a picture book author, a Grammy-nominated children's musician, and a father of two. I have read these stories to my children and am so proud to live in the great state of North Carolina with so many talented, genuine, and inspirational Black women.

Pierce's book list on children's reads by Black women from North Carolina

Why did Pierce love this book?

I fell in love with Alison's work when I first saw her Instagram profile: "@bunny_fart". Not only did I laugh out loud at the name on her profile, I was also blown away by her wonderfully creative illustrations and animation.

I love her award-winning collabo with author Angela Shante: The Noisy Classroom which follows a young girl who is nervous on her first day of school and her fun-loving, sing-songy teacher. It’s a charming glimpse into a relatable subject: that awkward feeling you get adjusting to an unfamiliar environment. Perfect for any family struggling to embrace a new change. 

By Angela Shante, Alison Hawkins (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Noisy Classroom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Silver Medalist, 2020 Wishing Shelf Book Awards: Books for 6-8 Year Olds
Winner, 2020 American Fiction Awards for Best Cover Design: Children's Books
Finalist, 2020 American Fiction Awards for Children's Fiction

The first day of school is coming... and I'm going to be in the noisy class. Any class but the noisy class will do!

A young girl is about to enter the third grade, but this year she's put into Ms. Johnson's noisy class. Everything about the noisy class is odd. While all the other classes are quiet, Ms. Johnson sings and the kids chatter all day. The door…

Am I Overthinking This?

By Michelle Rial,

Book cover of Am I Overthinking This?: Over-Answering Life's Questions in 101 Charts

Ben Orlin Author Of Math Games with Bad Drawings: 75 1/4 Simple, Challenging, Go-Anywhere Games--And Why They Matter

From the list on math books with genuinely good drawings.

Who am I?

Explaining math demands great visuals. I should know: I explain math for a living, and I cannot draw. Like, at all. The LA Times art director once compared my cartoons to the work of children and institutionalized patients. (He printed them anyway.) In the nerdier corners of the internet, I’m known as the “Math with Bad Drawings” guy, and as a purveyor of artless art, I’ve developed an eye for the good stuff: striking visuals that bring mathematical concepts to life. Here are five books that blow my stick figures out of the water. (But please buy my book anyway, if for no deeper reason than pity.)

Ben's book list on math books with genuinely good drawings

Why did Ben love this book?

I adore these images. Each is like a tiny memoir wrapped in a graph. Even beyond the puzzle-like pleasure of decoding them, I love Rial’s playful use of real objects. Coffee rings form a Venn diagram about coffee addiction. Floss traces a line graph on dental hygiene. Half-eaten cheese sticks become the bars on a chart of cheese consumption. A delicious book, in every sense!

By Michelle Rial,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Am I Overthinking This? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Am I overthinking this? Probably.

This is a book of questions with answers, over-answers, and many charts: Did I screw up? How do I achieve work-life balance? Am I eating too much cheese? Do I have too many plants? Like a conversation with your non-judgmental best friend, Michelle Rial delivers a playful take on the little dilemmas that loom large in the mind of every adult through artful charts and funny, insightful questions.

* Building on her popular Instagram account @michellerial, Am I Overthinking This? brings whimsical charm to topics big and small
* Offers solidarity for the stressed, answers…

The Worry Cure

By Robert L. Leahy,

Book cover of The Worry Cure: Seven Steps to Stop Worry from Stopping You

Mark E. Crawford Author Of The Obsessive Compulsive Trap: Real Help for a Real Struggle

From the list on obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Who am I?

I’ve been a practicing clinical psychologist for over thirty years. I’ve seen many patients who have suffered from OCD – some to the point of being debilitated by their symptoms. Few things are as gratifying as helping someone overcome OCD and live a normal life. While the disorder can be confusing, once people understand what OCD is and how to treat it, they can literally change their lives for the better. This is why I went into this field to begin with, and after thirty years, I still feel privileged and grateful when I can help someone escape the prison of OCD symptoms. 

Mark's book list on obsessive-compulsive disorder

Why did Mark love this book?

Most people who suffer from OCD also suffer from anxiety in general. Anxiety is the most common mental health disorder that we see. This book is a great resource to help you understand the nature of anxiety. It also offers practical and well-researched techniques and tools to help you manage anxiety more effectively in order to help you minimize the impact of anxiety and worry on your life. 

By Robert L. Leahy,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Worry Cure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Do you worry that you'll say the wrong thing, wear the wrong outfit, or look out of place? Or maybe that you'll make a mistake at work, disappoint your partner, or overlook a serious health problem? Or perhaps you just worry too much - constantly running what-if scenarios through your head? Of course you do - we all do. Worry is a central issue in many people's lives; 38% of people say they worry every day. In this groundbreaking book, Dr Robert Leahy offers new insight, advice and practical techniques for everyone who has ever had a sleepless night. Using…

Ruby Finds a Worry

By Tom Percival,

Book cover of Ruby Finds a Worry

Lisa Katzenberger Author Of It Will Be OK: A Story of Empathy, Kindness, and Friendship

From the list on facing your fears.

Who am I?

I’m a picture book writer who struggles with anxiety. Some things that seem like no big deal to most people can become a very big worry for me (like Giraffe worries about Spider in It Will Be OK). I found that identifying and naming our emotions—in this case fear—makes it easier to address our feelings and work through them. I want to share my experience of being fearful of things, both big and small, with children to let them know they are not alone and they can have power over scary emotions.

Lisa's book list on facing your fears

Why did Lisa love this book?

As an expert worrier, I really related to this book about a spunky girl named Ruby who one day discovers a worry. What I love about this book is that the worry is illustrated, so we can see its intimidating facial expression and watch it grow in size. The worry follows Ruby to all her favorite places—the school bus, the swing set, the movies—and it prevents her from doing what she loves. But it’s not until she spots another worry sitting with a boy that she is able to face her fear about the worry and do the best thing ever – talk about it. I love how this story shows children that talking about our feelings gives us power and strength to work through them.

By Tom Percival,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Ruby Finds a Worry as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The beloved picture book about what to do when a worry won't leave you at alone -- perfect for reassuring young readers in times of stress.

Meet Ruby -- a happy, curious, imaginative young girl. But one day, she finds something unexpected: a Worry. It's not such a big Worry, at first. But every day, it grows a little bigger . . . and a little bigger . . . . Until eventually, the Worry is ENORMOUS and is all she can think about.

But when Ruby befriends a young boy, she discovers that everyone has worries, and not only…

Wemberly Worried

By Kevin Henkes,

Book cover of Wemberly Worried

Carolyn Crimi Author Of There Might Be Lobsters

From the list on children overcoming fears.

Who am I?

I love this letter that I received from a child reader: Ahoy Ms. Crimi! Your book Henry and the Crazed Chicken Pirates made me think of myself because the character Henry is really shy and cowardly, kind of like me sometimes. But I put all that aside and come around in the most sincere moments. Like this young reader, I, too, have my cowardly moments. I was definitely Piglet in Winnie the Pooh! Perhaps this is why so many of my books involve fearful characters. It’s a character trait that I relate to all too easily. Writing about my fears gives me some insight to them and, hopefully, it helps my readers as well.

Carolyn's book list on children overcoming fears

Why did Carolyn love this book?

Anxiety is a tricky thing, and Wemberly Worried illustrates all its various peculiarities. For instance, Wemberly, a world-class worrier, worries that there will be too many butterflies in the neighborhood parade. But then, when it turns out she’s the only butterfly in the neighborhood parade, she worries about that. The only thing that seems to steady her nerves is her adorable toy rabbit, Petal. When Wemberly shows up on her first day of school, her worries lessen when she meets another little girl mouse who has a toy just like Petal. 

While Wemberly is a mouse, this story is very relatable for little boy and girl worriers everywhere. It’s absolutely perfect for those first day of school jitters.

By Kevin Henkes,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A back-to-school favorite Wemberly worried about spilling her juice, about shrinking in the bathtub, even about snakes in the radiator. She worried morning, noon, and night. "Worry, worry, worry," her family said. "Too much worry." And Wemberly worried about one thing most of all: her first day of school. But when she meets a fellow worrywart in her class, Wemberly realizes that school is too much fun to waste time worrying!

Worry Says What?

By Allison Edwards, Ayesha Rubio (illustrator),

Book cover of Worry Says What?

Noel Foy Author Of ABC Worry Free

From the list on showing anxiety who’s boss.

Who am I?

From personal experience living with an anxiety disorder, I’ve discovered that once you learn about anxiety and how it works, it’s not so frightening! I’ve applied this knowledge and background to my roles as a mom, award-winning children’s author, and former teacher who transformed into a neuroeducation consultant. I specialize in workshops and one-on-one coaching for schools, families, organizations, and corporations on anxiety, stress management, executive function, and growth mindset. My books are inspired by my desire to engage kids and adults in fun, playful, and empowering stories. My passion to equip others with practical problem-solving tools to decrease stress, promote healthy change and maximize their unique potential is boundless! 

Noel's book list on showing anxiety who’s boss

Why did Noel love this book?

I love this picture book’s simple, playful approach to common worries and what happens when we believe them to be true. Edward’s main character perceives Worry as an imposing monster that camps out in her mind. Worry’s voice is loud and bossy at times and affects how she feels in her body. Even worse, Worry inhibits her ability to enjoy life and face challenges—until she learns how to talk back to it!

Every time I read this book I’m enchanted by its delightful illustrations and reminders to stand up to Worry. Just as the main character silences Worry’s voice by flipping anxious thoughts into brave affirmations and powerful reminders of all she’s capable of doing, so can the readers!

By Allison Edwards, Ayesha Rubio (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Worry Says What? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Help Children Learn to Quiet Anxious Thoughts

Allison Edwards, author of the best-selling book Why Smart Kids Worry, gives a glimpse into the ways worry whispers to young minds, and offers a powerful tool all children can use to silence those fears.

"Worry's songs tie my tummy up in knots, and the things he says make my heart beat very fast. Sometimes he speaks in a whisper, and other times his voice gets so loud I can't hear anything else."

Worry and anxiety are currently the top mental health issues among children and teens. Children have a number of worries…

The Lost Whale

By Hannah Gold,

Book cover of The Lost Whale

Andrea Stryer Author Of Reef Raiders: An Environmental Mystery

From the list on inspiring kids to protect our world.

Who am I?

I have been privileged to see a penguin chick running to its parent for a meal, a blue-footed booby couple doing a mating dance, a cheetah racing across the savannah, and a whale spouting out at sea. I am committed to do what I can to preserve natural habitats and limit the effect humans have on the environment. As a teacher, librarian, and author, I encourage and laud kids who want to protect our world. It is a joy to be involved with books that are models for enthusiastic youngsters. 

Andrea's book list on inspiring kids to protect our world

Why did Andrea love this book?

With my fascination for whales, I was taken by Gold's book.

Rio, who lives in London, is sent to California to be with his grandmother, while his violinist mother recovers from a breakdown. Everything is alien to Rio. Gradually, he begins to notice the migrating gray whales.

With his new friend, Marina, and her father, who runs a tourist boat, Rio becomes intrigued with one whale in particular, White Beak. They track White Beak, until suddenly, there's no trace of her. Rio and Marina, concerned that she has gotten entangled in fishing nets, are determined to locate her.

Their strong resolve leads them further out to sea and into a deep involvement with White Beak. 

By Hannah Gold,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Lost Whale is the enchanting second novel from the author of The Last Bear: the bestselling debut hardback of 2021 and The Times Children's Book of the Week, winner of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize and the Blue Peter Award and shortlisted for the British Book Awards and the Indie Book Awards 2022

'Unforgettable highly accomplished animal adventure about the connection between a boy and a whale, with strong ecological themes' The Bookseller, Editor's Choice

What if you could communicate with a whale?

Rio has been sent to live with a grandmother he barely knows in California, while his…

Running Scared

By Edward T. Welch,

Book cover of Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the God of Rest

Pierce Taylor Hibbs Author Of Struck Down but Not Destroyed

From the list on anxiety and faith.

Who am I?

Pierce Taylor Hibbs (MAR, ThM Westminster Theological Seminary) has lived with an anxiety disorder for over fourteen years and offers a unique perspective on how anxiety and faith are interconnected. He is the award-winning Christian author of many books, including Struck Down but Not Destroyed: Living Faithfully with Anxiety. Other books he's written on anxiety include Still, Silent, and Strong: Meditations for the Anxious Heart and Finding Hope in Hard Things: A Positive Take on Suffering

Pierce's book list on anxiety and faith

Why did Pierce love this book?

I found this book when I was at the end of my rope with anxiety, and the book was uplifting, to say the least! Though it didn’t address all my concerns as someone with an anxiety disorder, it did walk through Scripture and show me how God had an encouraging, fatherly response to our anxieties. It also reminded me that God is the only place of true rest for restless minds. If you’re looking for a biblically rooted resource for common anxieties, this book was just that.

By Edward T. Welch,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In his new release, Running Scared, Edward T. Welch investigates the roots of fear in the human soul and the ramifications of living in the grips of anxiety, worry, and dread. Welch encourages readers to discover for themselves that the Bible is full of beautiful words of comfort for fearful people (and that every single person is afraid of something). Within the framework of thirty topical meditations, Welch offers sound biblical theology and moment-by-moment, thoughtful encouragement for life-saving rescue in the midst of the heart and mind battlefield of rampant panic-stricken responses.

This comprehensive primer on the topic of fear,…