‘Make friends, banish fear, get rich, feel happy. BE BETTER!’ Scream the covers of a million self help books in bookshops, libraries and online. They promise the reader the ability to alter their own health, love, wealth and happiness. But are they beneficial or useless?
The self help industry has earned publishers in the U.K an estimated £60 million in the last five years, currently taking up 20% of the ebook market. Meanwhile, evidence has found that self-help reading can help people with mental health conditions get better, and self-help books have been available on prescription from the NHS since June 2013.
Viki Browne has been living by the book. Using both popular and prescribed titles including Men are from Mars Women are From Venus, Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, Self-Hypnosis and The Secret, Viki has applied each book to her life through a series of experiments*. She hopes to separate the good from the bad, the enlightening from the laughable. Will you encounter a fearless, rich, calm, happy woman come performance day? Will they make her better?
*experiments will not be scientifically verifiable .