Caring for a loved one

Book recommendations for those caring for a loved one.

Caring for a loved one can be both rewarding and challenging. It can be a labour of love, but it can also be physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting.

On one hand, it can bring a sense of purpose and fulfillment in knowing that you are helping someone in need. On the other hand, it can be stressful, especially if the person you are caring for has a chronic illness or disability that requires round-the-clock attention. It can also lead to feelings of isolation, as caring for someone can take up a lot of time and energy, leaving little time for self-care and socializing.

Caring for a loved one can also be emotionally challenging, especially if the person you are caring for is in pain or suffering. It can be difficult to see someone you love go through a difficult time, and it can be a struggle to know how to help them. Additionally, caring for someone can also be a financial burden, as it may require hiring help or purchasing necessary equipment or supplies.

In conclusion, caring for a loved one can be a complex and challenging experience, but it can also bring great joy and fulfillment. It is important to take care of yourself and seek support from others when needed.

You might also find it helpful to explore the very complex feelings that arise when you're caring for a loved one in a bibliotherapy session or complete our online Bibliotherapy, Literature and Mental Health course.


The Last Act of Love (Memoir) by Cathy Rentzenbrink

The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink is a story about a family's struggle and survival after a life-altering event. In the summer of 1990, Cathy's brother Matty was hit by a car, putting him in a coma for eight years. The story is about the heart-wrenching journey Cathy and her family go through as they try to keep Matty alive and make difficult decisions about his care. It's a story of love, loss, and survival and is meant for anyone who has experienced pain and loss in their lives. The book is a touching tribute to the power of love and family, and the sacrifices they make in the face of tragedy.


An Extra Pair of Hands (Non-fiction) by Kate Mosse


In An Extra Pair of Hands, Kate Mosse tells her personal story about her experiences as a carer in middle age. She shares her journey of caring for her father through Parkinson's, supporting her mother after her father's death, and helping her 90-year-old mother-in-law. The book is a tribute to the gentle heroism of carers, highlighting the small acts of tenderness and love that they provide every day. Mosse shares her struggles with balancing priorities, dealing with repetitive tasks, and navigating feelings of guilt and powerlessness. The book is also about finding joy in difficult times, the solace of nature, and the importance of celebrating and valuing older people. At its core, "An Extra Pair of Hands" is a story about love and the sacrifices we make for those we care about.


Related recommended reading lists:



Caring for someone with cancer

Consolation in times of sorrow

Feeling lonely

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder



Looking for something more specific? Get something more tailored with our personalised book prescriptions within 48 hours. 

You might also find it helpful to explore these feelings in a bibliotherapy session or learn some bibliotherapy techniques to help you process these feelings by completing our online Bibliotherapy, Literature and Mental Health course or our book Bibliotherapy: The Healing Power of Reading.

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 two books called Bibliotherapy: The Healing Power of Reading and 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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