In the October Random House release No Cure for Being Human, Kate Bowler writes of living within the confines of an illness. Hilary Redmon, v-p and executive editor at Random House, says the book’s insights have wide application in the current moment. “The things that we take for granted can all be gone, and that’s what happened to all of us suddenly,” she notes. “Kate articulates these feelings we’re having, and the frustration of being suddenly limited.”

Bowler’s book is one among several forthcoming titles whose personal narratives offer timely lessons in emotional health and wellness.

The Comfort Book

Matt Haig. Penguin Life, July

The author follows 2020’s The Midnight Library (331,000 print copies sold, per BookScan) with a collection of short meditations that began as uplifting letters to his future self, incorporating insights from international cultures, history, and science.


Adam Stern. HMH, July

Stern, a psychiatrist, highlights his arduous residency at Harvard Medical School, and describes what he and his classmates learned from one another, their teachers, and the patients they cared for. (See our q&a with Stern, "Seeking Help Is a Sign of Strength.")


The Light Streamed Beneath It

Shawn Hitchins. ECW, Oct.

A Canadian comedian and the author of the 2017 essay collection A Brief History of Oversharing recounts losing his partner in an accident and his ex, who died by suicide, within five months. The book elaborates on love and sexuality, and explores trauma and modes of healing from a queer perspective.

Living Brave

Shannon Dingle. HarperOne, July

Disability activist, freelance writer, and sex trafficking survivor Dingle chronicles her grief in the aftermath of her husband’s death in a freak accident, and, through a combination of self-compassion and faith, offers others a road map for coming out on the other side. PW’s review called the book “a raw, affecting examination of what it takes to heal.”


No Cure for Being Human

Kate Bowler. Random House, Oct.

Bowler, an associate professor at Duke Divinity School, confronts what to do with the time she has left after a stage IV colon cancer diagnosis. Described by Glennon Doyle as “a Christian Joan Didion,” Bowler attempts to create meaning through a series of absurd and painful episodes. The book builds on her 2018 memoir, Everything Happens for a Reason (106,000 print copies sold, per BookScan), which PW’s starred review praised for the way the author “pierces platitudes to showcase her resilience in the face of impending death.” (See our q&a with Bowler, "Counting Her Minutes.")

Running Is a Kind of Dreaming

J.M. Thompson. HarperOne, Oct.

When the author was committed to a psychiatric ward in his 20s, he found solace in running. Now a clinical psychologist, he credits physical activity with saving his life. In his memoir, he recounts the genetics, early trauma, and medication that contributed to his illness, and the steps that facilitated his healing.



Duff McDonald. Harper, Oct.

McDonald, whose previous books cover business, finance, and capitalism, writes about the habits and hobbies that he cultivated during the pandemic. He leans on a variety of sources—Buddha, Bob Dylan—to illustrate what it means to be present, and how to bring joy to every moment.    

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