New Year… New mindset? Need some 'shelf help'?

New Year… New mindset? Need some 'shelf help'?

A blog post created by Amanda from Central Library, to help you get through January.

This New Year, our libraries have lots to offer, whatever your resolutions.

Below are some of our favourite ‘shelf help’ books all free from your local library to borrow. Digital versions may also be available via Libby or BorrowBox.


Need to break some bad habits or create good ones?

Whether it’s quitting a bad habit or creating positive new ones, we have you covered!

View these self help books or search on Libby for the eBook versions. Other titles are available.

Perhaps this year you’d like to learn a new skill or improve upon existing skills? We have a fantastic selection of crafting, cookbooks, coding, art and sport books available across our branches, we also have a great collection of digital magazines across a wide range of topics.

See more about our library apps and websites.

As well as Libby which has some great eBooks and eAudiobooks, we also have BorrowBox which has hundreds of eAudiobooks. Perhaps you fancy learning a new language or brushing up on a language, Borrowbox has you covered, below are just some of what’s available along with a fantastic selection of nonfiction and fiction titles…


My personal recommendations


Ten Arguments For Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier

Described by Zadie Smith as 'A blisteringly good, urgent, essential read' it’s a very thin book and one that I have read before, but definitely worth a reread. It addresses how we use social media and the effect it has on us and what we can do to lessen its impact.


The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Having read the book, I can’t recommend it enough, I found it really uplifting even if at times the book itself is quite sad and leaves you at moments feeling hopeless… but by the end of the book just like at the end of a puzzle, it comes together beautifully and is incredibly life affirming. The plot follows Nora who is having a hard time and doesn’t feel like she has much to live for or that she has accomplished much, full of regrets about how her life might have been, the midnight library guided by a much loved school librarian allows her to glimpse other possibilities. I shan’t say too much more for fear of spoiling the book. This January, I shall be listening to the eAudiobook instead of rereading it, whilst on the go (my favourite thing about eAudiobooks is the freedom to listen to a fantastic story).


The No Spend Year: How You Can Spend Less And Live More by Michelle McGagh

This was a good read when I read it a couple of years ago and still relevant given the current social economic situation many of us find ourselves in. Whilst I didn’t have a ‘no spend year’, I certainly picked up some fantastic tips to be more frugal and strict with myself. Michelle sets out her parameters for the year, there are non-negotiable spends such as household bills and a whole section devoted to grocery shopping. Despite the frugality of the book, it’s surprisingly optimistic and upbeat, I’m not sure even Michelle would recommend taking up the challenge but there are loads of takeaways (or rather none! Excuse the pun!) And the breakdown of money saved is staggering.


My Morning Routine by Benjamin Spall and Michael Xander

Neatly packaged into several chapters, each with a specific focus from sleep, parenting, meditation, health, working out, and so many more. The book is filled with first-hand accounts from successful people from all industries, CEO’s of large corporate companies, authors, film makers, young entrepreneurs, engineers… all sharing their morning routines. As a nosey person and someone who is constantly striving for a more organised and less chaotic morning household, it was fascinating reading how other people manage their mornings and I now have lots of ideas to help create a new morning routine for 2023.

- Blog post written by Amanda from Central Library.