Wellbeing and leisure resources

While the majority of our collection supports your academic studies or research needs, we know everyone needs a break sometimes. Resources such as our Welfare Collection and General Collection are available to help you relax, provide you with information and fulfil all of your non-academic needs.

Welfare Collection

 It's okay not to be okay, and here in the Library we've been working with the college's Welfare Team for the past few years to curate a collection of books to help you through any tough times you might have while you're at Queens'. The books can be found at classmark QW on the first floor of the Library, and cover a range of subjects including depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, eating disorders, procrastination, dealing with grief, sleep problems and much, much more. We are happy to lend these to you on top of the 10 books you need for your studies, so if you find you've maxed out your loans just send us an email or speak to a member of library staff so we can help.

 If you're away from Cambridge and find you want access to some welfare material, the University Library's Accessibility team have curated a great list of wellbeing ebooks. We're happy to take suggestions to increase our collection of welfare books so if you think we're missing something important, please let us know.

General Collection

We may be biased, but we think that reading for pleasure is just as important as academic reading, and we've created a General Collection to make it really easy for you to spot great books for your spare time. The General Collection is located on the ground floor of the Library on the left-hand side as you go through the doors into the reading room, and includes prize-winning contemporary fiction and non-fiction (e.g. Booker Prize, Wellcome Prize, Women's Prize) as well as biographies, popular science and non-fiction and books by Queens' alumni. Why not check out Stephen Fry's memoir of his time at Queens', or 2020 British Book Awards Book of the Year, Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams?

For this collection, we try to pick contemporary books that resonate with current issues and interests, such as trans representation and the Black Lives Matter movement, and we are also currently working with representatives on the JCR and MCR to try and ensure our collections are as diverse and inclusive as possible. If you have any suggestions for additions to this collection, please let us know!

Other resources


A small selection of games are now available in the General Collection on the ground floor of the Library. The following games can be borrowed as usual on the self-issue machine:

  • Codenames (2-8 players)
  • Pandemic (2-4 players)
  • Tiny Epic Galaxies (1-5 players)
  • Coup (3-6 players)

Unfortunately due to metal casing, a couple of our games are not borrowable on the machine so please email to arrange to borrow the following games:

  • Forbidden Island (2-4 players)
  • Dobble (2-8 players)

If you do borrow games from us, please ensure you return them with all parts and instructions as they were borrowed. If there's a game you'd particularly like to see, why not let us know? And if you're not in Cambridge, you can still play games with your friends by signing up to the online platform Board Game Arena, which features many popular single and multi-player board games.


Our DVD collection is located on the first floor of the Library, on either side of the double doors. While historically the DVD collection has been mostly for academic use by MMLL and other subjects that need audio-visual materials, we have now purchased a number of DVDs for leisure purposes, any of which can be borrowed. Available titles include recent award winners, classics and cult favourites such as Airplane!, Mean Girls, Hidden Figures, Hocus Pocus and Parasite. If you don't have a DVD drive in your laptop, we have a borrowable DVD player that can be plugged into your device via USB - please contact us for further details.

Other libraries

There are over 100 libraries in Cambridge, many of which you can use as a Cambridge student. Most use iDiscover for their catalogue so you can see what they have at the same time as searching for our books, but you can check out a full list of Cambridge libraries here to make sure you're not missing anything. If you're looking for leisure materials, the English Faculty Library have a great collection of contemporary literature and the Judge Business School have lots of popular films and TV series on DVD. Both can be used by any Cambridge student, though you'll need to contact them first to join.

Don't forget that you can also join your local library to borrow even more! Local library services provide access to a wealth of online and physical resources, from books and audiobooks to newspapers and magazines. You are all eligible to join Cambridgeshire County Library service through studying in Cambridge - why not find your home library and join there too to access even more?