STAFF PICK: 'The Novel Cure: From Abandonment to Zestlessness: 751 Books to Cure What Ails You'

Published: Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 06:37 PM.

We read novels for entertainment, but we also read to learn about life and ourselves.

Here, at last, is a delightful, witty reference book that enables us to harness that power.

“The Novel Cure” is an apothecary of both contemporary and classic literary solutions for whatever troubles you. The authors have trawled 2,000 years of literature for novels that effectively promote happiness, health and sanity.

The book is arranged alphabetically so you can look up your ailment — be it anxiety, a stubbed toe or a midlife crisis — and find the best novel to read as an antidote to your suffering.

Whatever your condition, the prescription is simple: a novel (or two) to be read at regular intervals.

Most of all, The Guardian notes, it will “reaffirm literature’s ability to distract and transport, to resonate and reassure, to change the way we see the world and our place in it.”

Ailments and prescriptions include:

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