Minds and Mindfulness | Health Series Nonfiction

This season’s health-focused titles take a deep dive into emotional intelligence, physical and mental illness, healthy habits and more.


This season, we take a look at titles that draw the eye inward into the health and keeping of ourselves. Younger readers can learn about emotional intelligence and discover practices to manage myriad feelings. Older readers can learn about different diagnoses, both physical and mental, and learn what living with them can mean. Positive practices are spread throughout, and series take neutral positions on topics like eating and expression of emotions. While some of the health issues addressed can be tough, each selected series takes readers another step forward in understanding both the health topic at hand and their connection to the topic in the real world.



An, Priscilla. Mindfulness and Nature.ISBN 9781503869653.
––––. Mindfulness and Pets.ISBN 9781503869677.
––––. Mindfulness and Technology.ISBN 9781503869646.
––––. Mindfulness for Falling Asleep.ISBN 9781503869660.
––––. Mindfulness in the Classroom.ISBN 9781503869578.
––––. Mindfulness on the Playground.ISBN 9781503869585.
––––. Mindfulness While Eating.ISBN 9781503869592.
––––. Mindfulness While Playing Music.ISBN 9781503869639.
––––. Mindfulness While Playing Sports.ISBN 9781503869622.
––––. Mindfulness While Running Errands.ISBN 9781503869684.
––––. Mindfulness With Family.ISBN 9781503869615.
––––. Mindfulness With Friends.ISBN 9781503869608.
ea vol: 24p. (Everyday Mindfulness). The Child’s World/Wonder Bks. Aug. 2023. Tr $32.79.
Gr 1-4–Using situations and role-play through stories, these titles take readers on a journey with the families inside each book as they demonstrate mindfulness concepts in common situations such as dinners or shopping trips together. While typical topics, like nature mindfulness and mindful eating, are covered, plenty of new areas like mindfulness in music and sports keep the interest of those familiar with these concepts. Some of the key concepts in these titles look at teaching age-appropriate responsibility, empathy, and self-regulation through routines and healthy habits. VERDICT Libraries looking to develop their use of meditation and mindfulness practices in programming can use these to visualize how easily mindfulness can be woven into diverse activities.

Earley, Christina. I Live with a Learning Disability.ISBN 9798887353463.
––––. I Live with ADHD.ISBN 9798887353432.
––––. I Live with Autism.ISBN 9798887353449.
––––. I Live with Cancer.ISBN 9798887353487.
––––. I Live with Diabetes.ISBN 9798887353470.
––––. I Live with Down Syndrome.ISBN 9798887353456.
ea vol: illus. by Amanda Hudson. 24p. (I Live With). Seahorse Publishing/Starfish. Nov. 2023. Tr $27.93.
K-Gr 2–Smoothly illustrated main characters are highlighted with muted backgrounds to personify and explain diagnoses that children live with. A strong focus on positive engagement and empathy exudes from each page through the likable characters presented, who are shown to be well-rounded and more than their medical conditions. Each diagnosis is explained in simple terms with helpful illustrations. More than teaching children about others, it can also teach them about themselves as it covers common conditions like ADHD. There is no stigmatization present; the children featured simply live with their conditions. There is a center on the humanity of each child that is delightfully out of step with a historically condition-first area of children’s literature. VERDICT A welcome addition to school classrooms for teachers looking for ways to introduce medical diversity to young readers.

Harvey, Sarah. Grief.ISBN 9781778781407.
––––. Guilt.ISBN 9781778781605.
––––. Love.ISBN 9781778781551.
––––. Worry.ISBN 9781778781506.
Jones, Kari. Gratitude.ISBN 9781778781452.
ea vol: 32p. (Emotions and Feelings, Level 2). Engage Bks. Aug. 2023. Tr $24.99.
K-Gr 3–A balanced take on emotional intelligence for children that goes into the discussion of a variety of everyday feelings that children experience, using a neutral perspective. The author uses the leveled reader format in a creative way by breaking up the ideas into concrete questions rather than abstract ideas for the chapter headings. The author aims to address the common questions that readers might have about such feelings as gratitude and worry directly by asking what it is and answering it through those question-styled chapters. The best feature by far is the diverse photographs of real children experiencing each titular emotion. VERDICT These are the perfect addition to classrooms looking to build their emotional intelligence books for emerging readers.

Lake, Theia. Feeling Amused.ISBN 9781978533318.
––––. Feeling Embarrassed.ISBN 9781978533349.
––––. Feeling Excited.ISBN 9781978533370.
––––. Feeling Frustrated.ISBN 9781978533400.
––––. Feeling Happy.ISBN 9781978533431.
––––. Feeling Sad.ISBN 9781978533462.
ea vol: 24p. (My Emotions Through Emojis). Enslow. Aug. 2023. Tr $24.27.
K-Gr 2–Emojis are a familiar staple of chat conversations between people of all ages. These fun, vibrant pixels are the vehicle for exploring emotional intelligence and regulation here. Readers are given short stories in simple sentences with emojis peppered along the pages to help guide them to finding out more about how others feel and how to identify which emotions they themselves are experiencing. Each title explores the explanation of each emotion in a way that does not apply morality to them, while also teaching healthy ways to express how one feels to others and oneself. VERDICT Librarians looking to add materials related to emotional intelligence and trauma-informed care can rely on these playful choices and their chosen familiar medium of emojis.

McAneney, Caitie. I Can Breathe.ISBN 9781642824896.
––––. I Can Create.ISBN 9781642824957.
––––. I Can Move.ISBN 9781642824926.
––––. I Can Rest.ISBN 9781642824988.
––––. I Can Talk.ISBN 9781642825015.
ea vol: 24p. (My Calm-Down Books). Rosen/PowerKids Pr. Aug. 2023. Tr $25.27.
PreS-Gr 1–Positively affirming what children can do when they have strong feelings, these titles teach readers how they can take control of themselves. Sentences are short with sight words and limited, repeated vocabulary used. Between these short sentences, there are big, colorful pages of pictures showing the actions and feelings. The children in the photographs throughout are shown first experiencing sadness or frustration and then demonstrating breathing in deep or running in nature to show what is possible for young readers with big feelings — that they too can take control of themselves and their feelings! VERDICT These titles can be easily integrated into classrooms and used to direct activities that encourage calming down in the selected manner.

Schuh, Mari. My Life with Diabetes.ISBN 9781645494904.
––––. My Life with Epilepsy.ISBN 9781645494911.
––––. My Life with Leukemia.ISBN 9781645494928.
––––. My Life with Tourette Syndrome.ISBN 9781645494898.
ea vol: illus. by Ana Sebastián. 24p. (My Life With . . .). Amicus/Illustrated. Jul. 2023. Tr $35.70.
K-Gr 2–Charmingly illustrated, these titles feature children going about their lives while living with various medical conditions. A combination of varied social settings and first-person language allows for each narrator to connect with the reader’s empathy and understanding of health situations children might encounter like Tourette syndrome and epilepsy. In addition to this, the representation of children’s experiences of prolonged stays in the hospital in the Leukemia title shines a light on a lesser-seen childhood experience in a warm, friendly way. Layered between the explanations are the diverse interests and experiences of each child’s story. This is followed by uplifting back matter about the real-life child featured in each story. VERDICT A welcome addition to libraries looking to increase medical diversity in their picture books and story times.


Upper Elementary to Middle School

Kehoe, Rachel. Detecting Brain Disorders.ISBN 9781637396223.
––––. Detecting Heart Disease.ISBN 9781637396254.
Lilley, Matt. Detecting Cancer.ISBN 9781637396230.
––––. Detecting Infectious Disease.ISBN 9781637396261.
Mattern, Joanne. Detecting Injury.ISBN 9781637396278.
Morris, Rebecca. Detecting Chronic Disease.ISBN 9781637396247.
ea vol: 32p. (Medical Detecting). North Star Eds./Focus Readers. Aug. 2023. Tr $31.35.
Gr 5-8–Getting sick can be a scary experience, so these titles are here to demystify detection methods for serious issues in a visual, easy to understand way. The procedures and tests used in discovering illnesses are broken down in jargon-free language that reveals what each one is and what they are used for. Photographs of doctors, patients, equipment, and medical material are shown to provide transparency around each process. Information boxes are peppered throughout to pique interest around topics as well as to give a break in the text for readers. VERDICT Pulling back the curtain on medical terms and tests that can be scary, these titles will fit right into classrooms covering biology and physical health.


Upper Middle School to High School

Brezina, Corona. Eating Disorders.ISBN 9781499469011.
Haynes, Danielle. ADHD.ISBN 9781499469073.
Klatte, Kathleen A. PTSD.ISBN 9781499469318.
––––. School Violence.ISBN 9781499469349.
Uhl, Xina M. Self-Harm and Cutting.ISBN 9781499469370.
––––. Suicide.ISBN 9781499469431.
ea vol: 48p. (@RosenTeenTalk). Rosen/Young Adult. Aug. 2023. Tr $33.47.
Gr 8 Up–Teens today are living with a variety of issues that are directly connected to serious mental health conditions, and they can be difficult to address. While these titles do address heavy topics, each approaches the topic at hand with care and open explanations. Sections with definitions are broken up by pictures of teens throughout the series and followed up with scenarios to help provide relatable examples. Going beyond talking about the issues at hand, the authors take the time to address resources and how teens can reach out for help with things like school violence. The subject matter is reflective of the experiences and concerns teens experience today. VERDICT Valuable resources for school libraries to better support mental health questions of students.

Clayborne, Leigh. Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet.ISBN 9781422248249.
––––. Eating Whole Foods, Minimally Processed.ISBN 9781422248263.
––––. Nuts and Seeds for Health. ISBN 9781422248324.
Lozzi, Tony. Eating in Moderation and Intermittent Fasting. ISBN 9781422248300.
Radley, Laura D. Foods for Peak Fitness.ISBN 9781422248270.
––––. Fruits and Vegetables for Health.ISBN 9781422248287.
––––. Lean Protein for Health.ISBN 9781422248317.
Waldygo, Patricia. Eating Healthier as a Family.ISBN 9781422248256.
––––. How to Eat a Balanced Diet.ISBN 9781422248294.
––––. What’s in a Label?ISBN 9781422248331.
ea vol: 96p. (Food for Life). National Highlights/Mason Crest. Sept. 2023. Tr $37.27.
Gr 9 Up–Diving into the hot topics of food for teens, these titles explore nutrition from farm to digestion and help explain everything along the way. They provide a refreshing look at evidence-based, reliable information on important ideas like supplements and plant-based diets. Those subjects in focus do a great job of keeping the readers on the track of healthy diets and habits while avoiding the pitfalls of disordered eating and exercise behaviors. While the text is lengthy, the affirmative knowledge broken down in a no-nonsense way paired with scientific diagrams and illustrations help make the content much more accessible. VERDICT An indispensable selection for high school libraries that addresses topics around dieting and healthy eating in an age appropriate, healthy way for young adults.

Gagne, Tammy. Living with Bipolar Disorder.ISBN 9781678206642.
Kehoe, Rachel. Living with Gender Dysphoria.ISBN 9781678206680.
Normandeau, Sheryl. Living with Anxiety.ISBN 9781678206628.
Spalding, Maddie. Living with Psychotic Disorders.ISBN 9781678206703.
Wroble, Susan. Living with Depression.ISBN 9781678206666.
ea vol: 64p. (Mental Health Support). ReferencePoint Pr./BrightPoint. Aug. 2023. Tr $32.95.
Gr 8 Up–Addressing serious topics in a hi-lo format, these titles look at crucial issues that are facing teens’ mental health today. The text is broken into bulleted sections or smaller sections for ease of access, and there are several images and photographs used throughout to provide additional context to readers. The authors also mix in examples teens might experience themselves when dealing with things like anxiety or depression. There is an emphasis on not only knowing about one’s mental health, but living with that knowledge and thriving with support. VERDICT Having access to hi-lo options in nonfiction is so valuable for health materials in high school and public libraries serving teens.


As promised, we have looked at some exciting titles that help readers of all ages get to know more about mental and physical health. A standout this season is “I Live With” (Seahorse), which uses positive visuals like the ASAN-accepted infinity symbol to approach the topic of neurodivergence. Also of particular note is “My Calm-Down Books” (Rosen), which uses kind, autonomous language to teach ways to regulate emotions effectively. Both of these series help younger readers take control of their experiences and learn more about themselves and others. With health information, knowledge is a door and empathy is the key to unlocking it.



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