Reading Well

About the scheme

Reading Well helps you to understand and manage your health and wellbeing using recommended books available from your library.  The books provide information and advice for people with various physical and mental health conditions, their family, friends and carers. 

There are four different booklists:

Borrowing the Reading Well books

You can be recommended a title by a health professional, or you can visit your local library and borrow a book yourself.  You will need to be a library member to borrow a book.  Joining is easy and free and you can either join online or visit a library.  You just need one form of identification showing your name and address.

You can look to see which Reading Well books are available on the online catalogue or ask a member of library staff.  Books can be borrowed for up to three weeks and renewed four times (if no one else has requested them.) You can renew your book online or by calling Ask Inspire on 01623 677 200.

Further help

If you find the book you are reading is not helping, you should contact your GP or a health professional.  You can also visit

NHS Choices       Helpline: 111

Improving Access to Psychological Therapies

Further Information

There is a strong evidence that reading can improve your health and wellbeing.  Through annual evaluation of the scheme, as well as several case studies, the Reading Agency can show the positive impact of Reading Well on individuals.

The books have been recommended by health professionals, using guidelines and quality standards from NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) and have been tried and tested by people with experience of the conditions covered.  

Reading Well is delivered by The Reading Agency in partnership with Libraries Connected (formerly the Society of Chief Librarians) as part of their Universal  Health Offer.. It is funded by Arts Council England and Wellcome.  The programme is supported by a wide range of professional health bodies including Public Health England, NHS England and The Royal College of GPs. Visit the Reading Well website to see all supporting health partners.