The North Recommends: ZunTold

ZunTold publishes novels and poetry to support children young people and adults with their mental health. Founded by Elaine Bousfield (founder of, ZunTold is proud to be an independent publisher based in Manchester with a strong focus on stories about mental health.

Our first novel was published in May 2018, followed by Kate Wiseman’s crackling comedic trilogy, Gangster School. Since then our authors have won awards – Sam Pollen’s The Year I Didn’t Eat won the Lancashire Book of the Year Award in 2020 and Miriam Halahmy’s Always Here For You has been nominated for the Carnegie Medal.

We have published historical fiction – A Cake for the Gestapo by Jacqueline King, telling the story of the German invasion of Jersey in 1940 through the eyes of five teenagers, and Jiddy Vardy by Ruth Estevez, based on sixteen-year-old Jiddy and the clandestine smuggling rings of Robin Hood’s Bay in the 1790s. Just recently we released The Game Weavers by young BAME author, Rebecca Zahabi. We have translated French fiction – Le Grimoire, A Practical Guide to Red Magic – and plan to publish many more to come.

This year we have two big pieces of news. We shall be launching our new digital bibliotherapy and creative writing for therapeutic purposes platform, ‘fiction as therapy’, and we have some wonderful new publications coming your way!

In May we see the release of Rapids, a story about a mixed race seventeen-year-old teenager navigating all the usual challenges and more, whilst developing Hypomania, the ‘up’ side of bipolar disorder. It’s a cracking good read by Anna Bowles of and we expect it to be read by young adults and the adult market.

In the Autumn we publishing a poetry anthology for schools, The Face in the Mirror.

65 poems depict various aspects of mental health. Amongst the poems are those written by young people from schools in Manchester. The anthology has been complied by Judy Morris, a teacher and English specialist. Judy has written lesson plans based on the PSHE and English curriculum and there are also notes for school -based counsellors who want to use the poems as part of their therapy sessions. These have been complied by Elaine Bousfield, an experienced young people’s counsellor.

Find out more about ZunTold at