This is the last time I’ll be posting about self help books…well, almost. I’ll post a link when the article I wrote about the genre is published in early January.

Obviously, I couldn’t write about and/or read every self help book on the market. It is, after all, a nearly $10 billion industry. But to give you an idea of what publishers think will sell — and what people probably will spend money on — below is a selection of what was in that stack I posted about earlier.

I also wanted to point out that this doesn’t mean that I hate all self help books. Some can be helpful. I know a few have helped me, but I think a lot of them are crap, especially the “it worked for me, so it will work for you, too” books written by people who don’t have any other qualifications outside their own personal stories.

Maybe it’s a matter of the right book finding the right person. As one person I interviewed for the article said, that first book on the list below will probably help someone who thinks that not being engaged by the age of 25 is a major problem. But it sure isn’t me.

Side Note: I watched It’s a Wonderful Life for the first time in a long time last week. Great movie. Deserves to be an American classic. Really makes a gal think. But is the worst thing that happen to Mary be that she ends up an ‘old maid’ in her twenties? And that she works in the library? And that she — oh the horror — WEARS GLASSES!?!?!?!?!?! OH THE HUMANITY!!!! End Side Note.

The Panic Years: A Guide to Surviving Smug Married Friends, Bad Taffeta, and Life on the Wrong Side of 25 without a Ring by Doree Lewak

Overwhelmed, 2nd Edition: Coping with Life’s Ups and Downs by Nancy K. Schlossberg

It’s All About You: Live the Life You Crave by Heather Reider and Mary Goulet

How Did I Get So Busy?: The 28-day Plan to Free Your Time, Reclaim Your Schedule, and Reconnect with What Matters Most by Valorie Burton

Don’t Get Lucky – Get Smart: Why Your Love Life Sucks-and What You Can Do About It by Alan Cohen

Don’t Gobble the Marshmallow Ever! by Joachim de Posada and Ellen Singer

Minding the Body, Mending the Mind by Joan Borysenko, Ph.D.

His Cold Feet: A Guide for the Woman Who Wants to Tie the Knot with the Guy Who Wants to Talk About It Later by Andrea Passman Candell

How to Be Happy, Dammit: A Cynic’s Guide to Spiritual Happiness by Karen Salmansohn

The Girl’s Guide to Kicking Your Career Into Gear: Valuable Lessons, True Stories, And Tips For Using What You’ve Got (A Brain!) To Make Your Worklife Work For You by Caitlin Friedman and Kimberly Yorio

Get Yours!: How to Have Everything You Ever Dreamed of and More by Amy DuBois Barnett

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Jen Miller

Jen Miller

Jen A. Miller is a an author and freelance writer. Her memoir, Running a Love Story, was a Philadelphia Inquirer best book of the year. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, SELF, Buzzfeed and the Guardian, among others.


  1. Chrissy on January 25, 2008 at 2:05 am

    A real good self-help book I’ve just read called I.M.Heart has seriously changed my life. I’ve been an alcoholic for years. I’ve tried rehab and that has helped, but while in rehab I was given a book. this book i mentioned (I.M.Heart) was the best gift (next to treatment) I could ever receive. I’ve learned to love myself and I really think this book should be used for all recovery.

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