Recommended Literature on Cancer



The Fault in Our Stars (Fiction) by John Green




When Breath Becomes Air (Memoir) by Paul Kalanithi 


Thirsty-six-year-old neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi, was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. His memoir, When Breath Becomes Air, discusses his journey from medical student, to doctor, patient and fatherhood. He passed away while working on the book, yet it guides us on a journey of life – how we make the most of being alive whilst our mortality comes to an end and how what life means to us dramatically changes. He navigates us through his multiple identities, and how even in the face of death so much meaning can be drawn from what we are to others and how we relate to others. 


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A big hello and thank you for reading! Passionate about literature, psychology, and life I launched Book Therapy as an alternative form of therapy using the power of literature. I train mental health professionals, librarians, teachers as well as readers on using bibliotherapy in their own work through our online Bibliotherapy, Literature and Mental Health course. We also curate reading lists/personalised book prescriptions for clients based on their individual needs. This is our signature personalised reading service.

You can also check out Book Therapy’s other free reading lists and A- Z of book prescriptions (covering both fiction and non-fiction). These suggest books based on your existing life situation (e.g. anxiety, job change, relationship heartache) as well as interests (e.g memoir, historical fiction, non-fiction, crime etc). There’s also a Children’s A — Z of Book Prescriptions. Feel free to check out the blog for more literary gems. There’s also a post on my personal story of how I entered the world of bibliotherapy and book curation.

In this role, I have had the opportunity to publish a book called The Happiness Mindset, and write various literary essays and pieces for newspapers and magazines. I have undertaken bibliotherapy workshops for The United Nations, various libraries in New York and corporate organisations in the UK and US. My book recommendations have featured in the Guardian, Marie Claire, NBC News, Asian Voice, New York Observer, Sydney Telegraph and various other publications. If you are a parent you might enjoy a podcast I’ve recorded with speech and language therapist Sunita Shah on Raising A Reader & Storyteller. And if you’d like to connect, email me at or

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