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Mood-boosting reads chosen by young people

Young people in reading groups around the country have read and selected these mood-boosting books. There are some very surprising as well as inspiring choices. These are certainly not all cheerful stories, sometimes our spirits can be lifted by a giggle, sometimes we need to know we are not struggling alone.

Why not decide for yourself and try one?

Artichoke Hearts by Sita Brahmachari

Recommended by Rachel from South Tyneside: 'It is thoroughly enjoyable . . . hard to put down at some points as you want to know what is going to happen. A lot of people can relate to Mira, the main character, as it is a common situation... very nicely detailed so it is easy to picture yourself there in the story'.

Being Billy by Phil Earle

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'This is being written by an author who understands pain and hope . . . Before I read this book, I didn't really get people who were trying to help me. Now I give people more of a chance'.

Big Nate on a Roll by Lincoln Peirce

Recommended by Kirsten from South Tyneside: 'It brings you to the right mood'.

Boys Don't Cry by Malorie Blackman

Recommended by a reader from Wigan: 'Because even though it is not a 'happy' book, it shows that stressful times can be worked through'.

Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian

Recommended by Hannah from Calderdale: 'It took my mind off what I was doing and made me happy for others'.

Holes by Louis Sachar

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'I dare anyone in the world not to love this book. It's so original and gripping!'.

Just Listen by Sarah Dessen

Recommended by a reader from, Wiltshire: 'Just Listen is hilarious and emotionally intelligent with great dialogue!'.

Lia's Guide to Winning the Lottery by Keren David

Recommended by Bethany from South Tyneside: 'It's a funny book and it's easy to identify with the main character'.

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'I couldn't believe the author could write such short chapters that packed in so much action. I don't like long books but this one was kind of long but really easy to read and exciting. It also had characters like us'.

No Passengers Beyond This Point by Gennifer Choldenko

Recommended by a reader from South Tyneside: 'Because it has a happy ending. It's also thought-provoking about family relationships'.

Nobody's Girl by Sarra Manning

Recommended by Hannah from Calderdale: 'It was uplifting to see her gaining confidence and having fun for the first time in her life . . It absorbs the reader and helps you take your mind off your own life'.

Numbers by Rachel Ward

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'She totally understands disadvantaged young people who have problems and worries, and just reading Numbers helped me escape, even though it was so sad and tragic'.

The Recruit by Robert Muchamore

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'It was sheer escapism; you wish it was you. This is the best book I've ever read in my life!'.

The Secret Countess by Eva Ibbotson

Recommended by a reader from Derbyshire: 'The book has a positive feel throughout and you can almost forget your problems and be transported into Anna's world as a maid . . . you love her as a character'.

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Recommended by a reader from Wiltshire: 'The Sky is Everywhere deals with death and loss but it's still rich and romantic and has great characters'.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Recommended by Jacob from Calderdale: 'There are happy bits and interesting bits in this book, to make you think about life'.