A book with a single word title

Fairly straightforward: one word for the title, no “a” or “the” need apply. And everyone managed not to fudge it! Sometimes clarity is nice. Unfortunately, the books themselves didn’t necessarily have the same clarity.

You
by plenty of people
Almost every book with this title is written in second person. They otherwise span many genres and meta-genres, from philosophy to horror. Second person narration makes me want to reach out and smack the person presumably talking to me, so that’s an entire title as a miss for me!

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Depends entirely on the book

Xenocide
by Orson Scott Card
Can I just pretend OSC doesn’t exist? There’s actually a short story by a technical writer from Georgia (state not nation) by the same name. He has two blogs, on one of which he affectionately hangs out his family’s dirty laundry. He’s probably an improvement on that other Xenocide author.

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The next book in a series
A book set on a different planet
A book involving a mythical creature

Wither
by Lauren DeStefano
This is one of those YA dystopias that makes the entire genre look bad. I don’t know how anyone gets to the plot or characters when the premises involved are that nonsensical. Just to begin with, if the poles melt, there’s no Florida. It is one of the few up sides to climate change!

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A book with characters who are twins

Untitled
by Julie Kaewert
This book is nonsensical unless the prior three books are read. And even then, it’s not that much more reasonable. On the other hand, points for a nifty and very different cover.

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The next book in a series
A book involving a heist or theft
A book involving a library or bookstore
A book featuring a profession you are unfamiliar with
A book set in the city

Tracks
by Robyn Davidson
I’m still amused by Davidson’s exasperated tone at being bullied into writing this memoir.

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A book with an adaptation you enjoyed (or not) first

Shiver
by Maggie Steifvater
YA paranormal romance. I’m out! Meet me below with the nonfiction book about fish. (YA romance does not count for Bodice Ripper status on this blog, incidentally).

Possible Other Categories
A book involving a mythical creature

Salmon
by Jude Isabelle
This book is specifically about the Pacific Salmon in the Pacific Northwest, as opposed to salmon everywhere else. Isabelle is a Canadian science writer, so that makes sense. And it’s not just the science of the fish. It is also about the sociology and the archeology of this fish in human societies.

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A book about true crime
A book based on a real person
A book with an animal in the title
A book set at sea
A book with your favorite color in the title
A book involving real scientific knowledge
A book involving or about climate change
A book about a modern problem
A book recommended by someone else in the guild (me!)
A book with a subtitle
A book set in the city

Normal
by Warren Ellis
What’s with older male comic writers and growing their hair to make them look like some kind of insane hermit? And it’s always unkempt, and frequently paired with an unsuitable hat.

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A book you can read in a day
A book about mental health
A book featuring a profession you are unfamiliar with (futurists!)

Nimona
by Noelle Stevenson
stares hard at my library for still not having this in e-book

Possible Other Categories
A book involving a heist or theft
A book about a villain or anti-hero
A book with a queer/quiltbag/lgbt+ protagonist
A book you can read in a day
A book with pictures
A book involving a mythical creature
A book involving a fire
A book set in the city

Neverwhere
by Neil Gaiman
Gaiman applies his blender to the urban fantasy genre.

Possible Other Categories
A book set in the city
A book involving a mythical creature

Longbourn
by Jo Baker
Literally Pride and Prejudice: Below Stairs. The biggest caution to present is that Baker, unlike Austen, is writing of a past she never experienced, but has certainly researched.

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Mur?

Lexicon
by Max Barry
Barry’s blog says he’s more famous for his game NationStates than for his books. To be fair, I didn’t know who’d made that game, but I’d also never heard of any of his books so… NationStates is at least more famous, in any case?

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A book that takes place in the city

Leda
by Something like 17 different people
The problem with not listing authors is sometimes a title has such a glut of options, that I don’t even know where to start. And since I purposely stripped out the user data before setting up the blog, I don’t have certain helpful clues. Like I know one Habitican might have read the Croatian novel. Some people are more likely to have read the romance novels. There was one person dutifully going through all the classics, and Aldous Huxley wrote a book with this title. So many options!

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A book with a character’s name in the title (as a rule!)

Inferno
by Even more authors
Takes a deep breath It could be the first part of Dante’s masterpiece, another entry in Dan Brown’s series, a many-nominated fantasy novel, an indie horror needing so many content warnings, a gay romance, a straight bodice ripper, bad erotica, lengthy erotica, a bonkers Swedish classic, a YA urban fantasy, queer YA, more YA, a romantic suspense, queer poetry, a comic book, a crime novel, a collection of war photography, a history book, contemporary fiction, a book that doesn’t actually exist, and a book in which men are trash. And that’s just the first 2 pages of results.

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Spin the wheel and see what you get!

Firestarter
by Stephen King
I feel like this book was more of a thriller than a horror novel, even though the latter is what King is known for. Anyway, psychic powers, everything is on fire, beware G-men, etc.

Possible Other Categories
A book involving a fire
A book with an adaptation you enjoyed (or not) first

Fallen
by so very many romance authors
Oh yes, a whole lot of romance authors have taken this title, seen broken halos, and run all the way to the bank with it. Most of them probably didn’t get very much at the bank, to be fair. Can’t blame them either, fallen angels have a certain appeal. Also, there’s a webcomic with this title by someone named Aido and if anyone can find a continuation past the blood-spattered cliffhanger back in, like, 2004, I will be forever grateful because I really, really, really wanna know what happens to Faustus and Singe, dammit.

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You have to pick a book first

Everfair
by Nisi Shawl
An attempt at decolonizing steampunk? SIGN ME UP RIGHT NOW. Steampunk is a genre where I enjoy the aesthetic (largely all the gears, chains, and leather in creative combination, the menswear…), but I’m just not so into the actual… Victorianess of it. So this is pretty rad.

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A book set in a country that you are unfamiliar with (Belgian Congo)
A book about a difficult topic

Dune
by Frank Herbert

Possible Other Categories
A book with an adaptation you enjoyed (or not) first
A book set on a different planet
An allegorical book (well, sort of. He was playing with concepts of leadership and power; it’s not a political allegory, or even a historical one, it’s a philosophical one)
A book recommended by someone else in the guild (well, I haven’t reread it since high school, fair warning)

Deathless
by Catherynne M. Valente
A reinterpretation of a Russian fairy tale by a non-Russian turns out to cause some strong feelings all around. Surprise!

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A book about a villain or anti-hero
A book involving a mythical creature

Charmed
by Jen Calonita
Weirdly enough, we don’t actually have the first book in this series, Flunked, in this year’s reading. Must have been read in 2016 instead! You know what’s great about middle grade over YA? Way less emphasis on romance! And less dystopias!

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The next book in a series (#2!)
A book involving a heist or theft (not a spoiler, as the main character is literally a pickpocket)
A book involving a mythical creature

Brilliance
by A few options, not too many
I found three books with this title. One is a historical fiction reviving the old view of Thomas Edison as being a stellar guy, this time with a spin of JP Morgan being the devil on his shoulder. Um. Anyway! There’s also a contemporary science fiction thriller. And then another historical novel, this time about a young woman in the silent film era.

Possible Other Categories
Any one you want, you got it (not really, I’m just feeling musical)

Babbitt
by Sinclair Lewis
Sinclair Lewis, doing his thing, which is a cutting, satirical critique of some aspect of American society in, in this case, the 1920s.

Possible Other Categories
A book with a character’s name in the title
A book involving a mythical creature
A book set in the city
A book published before you were born (very likely)
A book about a villain or anti-hero
A book with a yellow spine (many editions)

Aria
by Sarah Holland-Batt
Poetry! So let’s talk about the cover instead, because I know poetry can be polarizing. It’s kind of cool, this cover. HB’s only other stand alone has a similar but somehow less cool cover. But it’s still better than the covers of all the anthologies and magazines she’s been in, which are all kind of super meh. How can you paint with words and not grab a decent illustrator to paint with, yknow, paint?!

Possible Other Categories
A book of or about poetry or poets

Unwilling
by Elizabeth Adams
Jane Austen pastiche which changes a few early circumstances and decisions from the original and then runs with them. For the Austenites and no one else.

Possible Other Categories
Nothing…?

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