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New at Peter White Public Library

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year. Peter White Public Library has a wide array of titles exploring the topic of Anxiety that are appropriate for both adults and children.

One of the problems of researching anxiety while impared by anxiety is that an anxious brain isn’t the best state for absorbing new information. In recent years, the graphic novel has proved a popular format for presenting difficult topics and has been used by several authors writing about anxiety. Gentle humor cuts through some of the tension, and the use of visuals clarifies the science. Check out these four recent purchases by PWPL to see if this approach works for you or someone you care about.

“In Anxiety is Really Strange” by Steve Haines and illustrated by Sophie Standing (the most technical title in this group), the science behind anxiety is explained in an engaging and highly original graphic medicine book, with in-depth analysis of where anxiety comes from, what it means for your body, and how to turn it into something positive. The artwork simply and humorously depicts how to alleviate anxiety and take control of its negative symptoms.

“Thin Slices of Anxiety: Observations and Advice to Ease A Worried Mind” by Catherine Lepage is a clever antidote to everyday angst. This illustrated book captures universal truths and comforting revelations about being human. Artist Catherine Lepage uses her wry humor to help us see that “thinly sliced and illustrated, emotions are much easier to digest.” The art is beautiful, and the captions are funny and cut to the heart of what anxiety actually is like to live with.

“Kind of Coping” by Maureen “Marzi” Wilson is a collection cartoons steeped in empathy. Marzi is no stranger to anxiety and invites the reader into her world as she (kind of) copes with her own anxiety from day to day, finding the humor in her condition in encouraging, and supportive comics that show you the best you can do sometimes is just kind of cope — and that’s OK! Whether it’s a panic attack or an awkward social snafu, Marzi knows what it’s like. With this collection contains over 150 full-color doodles that deliver hope and inspiration, unconditional support, and big laughs.

“Just Peachy” by Holly Chisholm explores what the day-to-day is like with depression and/or anxiety. The all-too-real cartoon protagonist gives readers a character to empathize with, and helps explain some of the not often talked about consequences and symptoms of having depression. The comics also explore the themes of heartbreak, finding love, dealing with stress, and capturing the magical moments in life that keep us going. Through dark humor and cute illustrations, the subject matter becomes a bit more bearable, allowing for honest discussion about things like treatment and getting through anxiety attacks, and providing some comfort in times of struggle. Simply put, this is an encouraging collection of comics about being just OK sometimes.

By Ellen Moore-Sarjeant

Cataloging Librarian