Books to Read in Recovery

For years, books have inspired the human race to overcome numerous obstacles and to pursue their dreams. Addiction recovery is no different. No matter what book you read, there’s a specific intent and purpose that the writer is trying to convey. You have to consider if that purpose is in line with what type of knowledge you’re trying to obtain. Whether it’s inspiration, information, or entertainment, books can prove truly valuable in the pursuit of sobriety. Other people’s stories can remind us that we’re not alone and that we’re truly capable of everything.

While in recovery, books can play a valuable role in helping a person feel inspired, hopeful, grounded, or simply educated. 

12-Step Programs: The Big Book

12-Step programs, in particular, have a specific book – The Big Book – that covers the 12-Steps and provides greater insights into the history of the 12-Step program. Additionally, it includes information for sponsors and/or those in recovery who wish to obtain a sponsor. Even those who’ve never attended these types of meetings before will be pleasantly surprised to find that the connections they make with others are enough to inspire them to continue pushing forth despite daily obstacles. The Big Book provides some incredible information for overcoming alcoholism and other addictions. It can be used as a “guidebook” for someone who wants more structure in their daily life. 

Why Reading is So Important

There are several excellent reasons why reading is so beneficial to a person in addiction recovery:


When we read books, we’re often able to imagine what the reader is saying as if it’s happening right in front of us. For books of inspiration, we can imagine a world of wonder right in our near future.


Previous research has shown that when we read stories, we can become so entrenched that it feels as though we’ve actually experienced it ourselves. It brings us a sense of knowledge and wisdom, which we can’t always obtain from merely hearing someone’s story in person. 

Enhanced Cognitive Abilities

When we read, our brain utilizes multiple complex cognitive functions, which cause our brain waves to perform these “exercises” that are actually quite healthy for us.


The sequence of events presented in stories can actually improve our attention span and ability to focus. Even if substance abuse has previously made this more challenging, reading can help us to restore it.

Changes in brain structure

The volume of white matter in the language area of the brain increases as we dive into reading. Over time, our brain structure can improve – which may even mitigate some of the effects of addiction.

 Exceptional Books for You to Read in Recovery

There are so many books that could positively influence you – and, of course, a little online research can help you determine what type of literature you’d like to read. Reading is a fantastic hobby to add to your daily life, not just because of the numerous physical and mental benefits, but also because of the many ways that books can contribute towards happiness in everyday living. If you’re currently on the lookout for some good books to read, consider these highly-rated reads:

  1.     The Easy Way to Control Alcohol by Allen Carr

For those who have ever experienced nerves when it comes to sobriety, this is the book for you!

  1.     Integral Recovery by John Dupoy

It’s always helpful to understand the beginnings of addiction and how it works in the brain and body – and this book can help you with just that.

  1.     Awakening the Brain by Charlotte A. Tomaino

For those interested in learning about relapse prevention as an aspect of the mind, body, and spirit, this could be the best book for you yet. Get inspired and informed about the recovery process with this one.

 Practicing Reading as an Act of Self-Care

Recovery asks that we begin to fill our lives with hobbies and activities that empower us rather than hold us back from the lives we’ve dreamed of living. Books provide us with the knowledge that we haven’t yet obtained on subjects that matter most to us. In short, reading is an act of self-care. By taking some time out of your day to read, you’re taking deliberate action towards bettering your mind, body, and spirit.

 Recovery is typically structured, but there are moments of personal time when a person can dive into books that inspire them. Who knows, by reading some books, you may find that you’re truly not alone in some of the issues you’ve faced before in life.

If you’re ready to seek help for addiction recovery, speak with a professional from Choice House today. Reading isn’t the only tool required in addiction recovery. In fact, most recovering people find that a tremendous amount of footwork is involved in getting sober – but reading some inspirational books can be an excellent start. It can also be a great way to improve brain function in early sobriety. If you’ve been reading into addiction recovery and are curious about how you can apply these tools in your daily life, Choice House can help you walk the walk. Choice House is a comprehensive treatment experience which includes everything you need at each stage of your recovery. Call us today at (720) 577-4422 to learn more.


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