Extraordinary Book Titles

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. “It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.”

I do not often think about book titles, but there are a few that have really stood out to me over the years. I love that feeling when you are reading a book and you have that aha moment when you discover why the title is significant. The titles I chose are all meaningful and in no way generic- and I love that!

The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating by Elizabeth Tova Bailey

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This is such a special and sweet memoir about a woman who finds herself bedridden with only a snail for comfort and companionship. The presence of the snail is a much needed distraction and it sparks her interest in snails and their behaviour. The story part memoir part nature writing about snails. I think that the title perfect summarizes the contents of the book and sparks a curiousity in the reader!

Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey

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I picked up Waiting for Tom Hanks solely because of the title, and that does not happen to me often! I mean, who doesn’t love Tom Hanks?! I read his short story collection just because he was the author and I am currently listening to the audiobook of The Dutch House simply because he narrates it.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

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This title is a bit long-winded, but it also memorable. Something about it perfect reflects the story inside. At the core it is a long story about a group of beings travelling to a small, angry planet. It is also one of my favourite books of all time so I might just have a bias here!

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

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The title of this book alone is powerful. The Silence of the Girls is about giving a voice to women in stories where they are often silenced and used as props. It is a feminist retelling of The Song of Achilles and I very much appreciated the perspective- I will never look at the original story in the same way.

Calypso by David Sedaris

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The entire time I was reading this hysterical memoir, I kept wondering to myself why it was called Calypso. Then this moment happens where it is explained and it made me laugh out loud- it is just so random!

Women Talking by Miriam Toews

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I adore this title for many of the same reason I love The Silence of the Girls- it is about given a voice to the voiceless. Women Talking is based on the real life of experiences of these women in a Mennonite community and she does a fantastic job of imagining what they might say and do if given the chance.

The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfold

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The Beauty that Remains is one of my favourite YA novels and is an interesting look at the different ways we deal with grief. I think that the title is powerful- it is about seeing the light through the darkness, seeing the beauty that remains after ugly times.

I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death by Maggie O’Farrell

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The title is actually based on quote from The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath:

“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.”

There is something so meaningful about that one simple line.

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

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I have never read another book where the title is a spoiler- it makes for an interesting reading experience. You know that the inevitable is going to happen but it still crushing when it does. I have never experienced anything quite like it!

The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock

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This is a quite book that follows the lives of many individuals. The title is very appropriate because it feels the reader is giving a chance to peek at the lives of normal, everyday people, each with their own stories, motivations, and struggles.

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What is your favourite book title?

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14 thoughts on “Extraordinary Book Titles

  1. I love ‘to long way to a small angry planet’ and ‘the smell of other people’s houses’! I don’t understand how people can come up with such titles haha!

    (www.evelynreads.com)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely post! For me, I really enjoy the title The Library of the Unwritten. And An Unkindness of Ghosts. I haven’t read either of those, but I really love the titles.

    Liked by 1 person

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