Mental Health Awareness Month is coming up in May, and it serves as the perfect reminder for how essential it is to address and amplify concepts like self-care, therapy, and looking out for your mental wellbeing. Novels, television shows, and magazine articles can all play a part in spreading awareness about mental health in a positive way.
Which brings us to QUEENIE, a newly published work of fiction by debut author Candice Carty-Williams. The book has caught our attention with its authentic perspective on mental health through the lens of the novel’s main character, Queenie Jenkins. A Jamaican British woman in her mid-twenties, Queenie is struggling to get a handle on both her romantic and professional life. And honestly, who hasn’t been there before? In the book, Carty-Williams details Queenie’s journey of self-discovery and illustrates how fragile mental health can be, especially when you’re a young adult still figuring out your place in the world.
Queenie runs up against various roadblocks and has to confront many emotional demons that affect her ability to move forward with her life. From being burned by a number of men to dealing with casual racism, Queenie struggles to find self-love and acceptance. This is something that many of us can relate to, whether you’re 25 or 65. The good news, though, is that Queenie decides to seek help from her friends, family, and a therapist, thereby reminding us that it’s okay to ask for help too. After all, everyone needs support and a soft place to land from time to time. In this way, we can all say: #IAmQueenie.
So in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month and our love for QUEENIE, we’ve put together a list of 7 books that raise awareness about mental health. These are some books that you might want to pick up when you’re feeling down and need some positivity and strength. We like to think Queenie would have found comfort in these insightful reads, and we think you might too…
P.S. Curious about QUEENIE? Learn more here!
Read up more on QUEENIE at Get Lit: Meet Queenie: A Millennial Struggling with Adulting (Like All of Us)
Photo by Tolani Osan. Find her on Instagram at @TolaniHerShelf