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Don’t Judge A Book By Its Title – 20 Seemingly Uninteresting Titles That Will Amaze You

Don’t Judge A Book By Its Title – 20 Seemingly Uninteresting Titles That Will Amaze You

“Eyes, so easily deceived, might judge more rightly with lids closed, allowing ears and heart to remain wide open.” ? Richelle E. Goodrich

As a reader, a good title will catch your eye. Titles can be mysterious or intriguing, drawing the reader in at first glance. It needs to convey, not only the spirit of the book, but possibly a hint to the climax as well. Unfortunately, more often than not, this is not the case – as what really matter is the content. So the next time you see a book with a dull title, don’t pass it by, give it a go. You might be pleasantly surprised!

* Note, the titles mentioned in this post are not free (unless otherwise stated). This post is purely meant as a reference material for your reading activities…

1. The Princess Bride

by William Goldman

The Princess Bride

It was made into a film of the same name in 1987 by Rob Reiner, and an attempt to adapt it into a musical was made by Adam Guettel. William Goldman said ‘I’ve gotten more responses on The Princess Bride than on everything else I’ve done put together-all kinds of strange outpouring letters. Something in The Princess Bride affects people.’

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The Princess Bride

2. Holes

by Louis Sachar

Holes

It won the 1999 U.S. National Book Award for Young People’s Literature and the 1999 Newbery Medal for the year’s ‘most distinguished contribution to American literature for children’. Originally, the book was to be called Wrong Place, Wrong Time, Wrong Kid. It was adapted into a film by Walt Disney Pictures and released in 2003.

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Holes

3. Wool

by Hugh Howey

Wool

Film rights to the story have been sold to 20th Century Fox; director Ridley Scott and Steve Zaillian expressed interest in the film adaptation. Howey signed a print-only deal for around $500,000 with Simon & Schuster to distribute Wool to book retailers across the US and Canada.

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Wool

4. The Catcher in the Rye

by J. D. Salinger

The Catcher in the Rye

Originally published for adults, it has since become popular with adolescent readers for its themes of teenage angst and alienation. It has been translated into almost all of the world’s major languages. Around 250,000 copies are sold each year with total sales of more than 65 million books. The novel’s protagonist, Holden Caulfield, has become an icon for teenage rebellion.

The novel was included on Time’s 2005 list of the 100 best English-language novels written since 1923, and it was named by Modern Library and its readers as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. In 2003 it was listed at number 15 on the BBC’s survey The Big Read. The novel also deals with complex issues of identity, belonging, connection, and alienation.

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The Catcher in the Rye

5. The Giver

by Lois Lowry

The Giver

Despite controversy and criticism that the book’s subject material is inappropriate for young children, The Giver won the 1994 Newbery Medal and has sold more than 5.3 million copies. In Australia, Canada, and the United States, it is a part of many middle school reading lists, but it is also on many challenged book lists and appeared on the American Library Association’s list of most challenged books of the 1990s.

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The Giver

6. The Stand

by Stephen King

The Stand

The Stand was nominated for the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1979, and was adapted into both a television miniseries for ABC and a graphic novel published by Marvel Comics.

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The Stand

7. Gone Girl

by Gillian Flynn

Gone Girl

It made the New York Times Best Seller list. Reviewers praised the novel’s use of unreliable narration, plot twists, and suspense. Some reviewers feel it straddles the boundary between genre fiction and literary fiction.

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Gone Girl



8. Dune

by Frank Herbert

Dune

It won the Hugo Award in 1966, and the inaugural Nebula Award for Best Novel. Dune is the world’s best-selling science fiction novel and is the start of the Dune saga.

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Dune

9. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

by Susanna Clarke

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Reached number three on the New York Times best-seller list. It was longlisted for the 2004 Man Booker Prize and won the 2005 Hugo Award for Best Novel.

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Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

10. NOS4A2

by Joe Hill

NOS4A2

Library Journal praising NOS4A2 as ‘fascinating and utterly engaging’. USA Today also gave a positive review and commented that the book ‘reimagined the vampire epic’. Library Journal also named NOS4A2 as one of the ten best books of 2013.

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NOS4A2

11. Night

by Elie Wiesel

Night

178 pages appeared in 1958 in France as La Nuit, and in 1960 a 116-page version was published in the United States as Night. Fifty years later it had been translated into 30 languages, and ranked alongside Primo Levi’s – If This Is a Man and Anne Frank’s – The Diary of a Young Girl as one of the bedrocks of Holocaust literature.

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Night

12. Girlfriend in a Coma

by Douglas Coupland

Girlfriend in a Coma

It is considered one of Coupland’s finest novels, with a stronger narrative than some of his earlier books but still providing relevant cultural criticism and commentary. In the UK, The Guardian described the book as Coupland ‘becoming extraordinary’ (25 April 1998) and The Times as ‘a disturbing, thought-provoking and moving novel. Girlfriend in a Coma has something of the quality of a fairytale, but it contains a sharp realism that makes the book scarily contemporary’ (15 May 1999).

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Girlfriend in a Coma

13. The Stranger

by Albert Camus

The Stranger

Listed number 1 in Le Monde’s 100 Books of the Century – based on a poll conducted in the spring of 1999 by the French retailer Fnac and the Paris newspaper Le Monde.

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The Stranger

14. The Road

by Cormac McCarthy

The Road

The novel was awarded the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Fiction in 2006. The book was adapted to a film by the same name in 2009, directed by John Hillcoat, starring Viggo Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee.

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The Road



15. V

by Thomas Pynchon

V

It was nominated for a National Book Award and in in 1964, the novel was awarded a William Faulkner Foundation Award for best debut novel. The New York Times, called Pynchon ‘a young writer of staggering promise’ lauding his ‘vigorous and imaginative style’, ‘robust humor’ and ‘tremendous reservoir of information’.

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V

16. To Kill a Mockingbird

by Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird

It was successful, winning the Pulitzer Prize, and has become a classic of modern American literature. The novel is renowned for its warmth and humor, despite dealing with the serious issues of rape and racial inequality. Author Mary McDonough Murphy, who collected individual impressions of the book by several authors and public figures, calls To Kill a Mockingbird ‘an astonishing phenomenon’. In 2006, British librarians ranked the book ahead of the Bible as one ‘every adult should read before they die’.[3] It was adapted into an Oscar-winning film in 1962 by director Robert Mulligan, with a screenplay by Horton Foote.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

17. Feed

by M. T. (Matthew Tobin) Anderson

Feed

Winner (2003 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Fiction), winner (2003 Golden Duck Awards Hal Clement Award for Young Adults) and nominee for 2005Ð2006 Green Mountain Book Award.

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Feed

18. Jonathan Livingston Seagull

by Richard Bach

Jonathan Livingston Seagull

By the end of 1972, over a million copies were in print, Reader’s Digest had published a condensed version, and the book reached the top of the New York Times Best Seller list where it remained for 38 weeks. In 1972 and 1973 the book topped the Publishers Weekly list of bestselling novels in the United States.

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Jonathan Livingston Seagull

19. Saturday

by Ian McEwan

Saturday

The book, published in February 2005 by Jonathan Cape in the United Kingdom and in April in the United States, was critically and commercially successful. Critics noted McEwan’s elegant prose, careful dissection of daily life, and interwoven themes. It won the 2005 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction.

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Saturday

20. It

by Stephen King

It

‘It’ deals with themes which would eventually become King staples: the power of memory, childhood trauma, and the ugliness lurking behind a faade of traditional small-town values. The novel won the British Fantasy Award in 1987, and received nominations for the Locus and World Fantasy Awards that same year. Publishers Weekly listed ‘It’ as the best-selling book in the United States in 1986.

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It

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