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Arts & Entertainment Literature Titles

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Literature: titles

On this page, each answer is the title of a particular work of literature.

It won't always be necessary to give the author's name – but they're included here for completeness.

See also Characters – which covers questions of the type "In which book did (such–and–such a character) first appear?"

Author Title
(Anonymous) 7th century poem from Mesopotamia: one of the earliest known works of fiction Click to show or hide the answer
(Anonymous) Manuscript of 254 poems and dramatic texts, dating from the 11th to 13th centuries – many of them bawdy, irreverent, and satirical; found in 1803 in the Benedictine monastery of Benediktbeuern (Beuern), Bavaria, and now housed in the Bavarian State Library in Munich; 24 of them were famously set to music in 1936 by the Munich–born composer Carl Orff Click to show or hide the answer
Richard Adams Narrated by Dandelion; Hazel, Blackberry, Fiver et al defeat General Woundwort and settle at Click to show or hide the answer
The inhabitants of Sandalford Warren moved to
Rowf and Snitter were Click to show or hide the answer
Harrison Ainsworth Popularised the story of Dick Turpin's mythical ride from London to York Click to show or hide the answer
Jeffrey Archer His third novel: tells the story of Florentyna Kane, the daughter of Abel Rosnovski in Kane and Abel (his second), who becomes the first female president of the USA Click to show or hide the answer
Margaret Atwood Set in Gilead, a country roughly situated in what is now known as New England Click to show or hide the answer
Jane Austen Her first novel: Elinor and Marianne was a preliminary study for Click to show or hide the answer
After Mr. Dashwood dies and his estate Norbury Park passes to his son by his first marriage, his widow and her daughters accept a cottage in Barton Park, the estate of Mrs. Dashwood's cousin Sir John Middleton
Fanny Price is the heroine of
The first novel that she finished, but only published posthumously; title is the name of the home of the Tilney family Click to show or hide the answer
First Impressions was the original title of Click to show or hide the answer
R. M. Ballantyne Ralph, Jack and Peterkin are castaways in Click to show or hide the answer
J. M. BarrieThe Boy who Would Not Grow Up is the alternative title of Click to show or hide the answer
H. E. BatesTitle comes from Shakespeare's Sonnet 18 Click to show or hide the answer
Samuel Beckett Tramps Vladimir and Estragon are the two main characters in (play) Click to show or hide the answer
Harriet Beecher Stowe Life Among the Lowly is the subtitle of Click to show or hide the answer
R. D. Blackmore Narrated by John (Jan) Ridd – tells the story of his forbidden love; subtitled A Romance of Exmoor Click to show or hide the answer
Giovanni Bocaccio Stories told over ten days by ten young people fleeing from plague–stricken Florence Click to show or hide the answer
Ray Bradbury Title is the temperature at which paper burns Click to show or hide the answer
Title comes from Shakespeare's Macbeth (see Agatha Christie) Click to show or hide the answer
Anne Bronte Helen Graham – more properly known as Helen Huntingdon – is the protagonist and title character of Click to show or hide the answer
Charlotte Bronte Eponymous narrator suffers a traumatic education at Lowood Institution, and is employed by Mr. Rochester of Thornfield Hall, as tutor to his ward Click to show or hide the answer
Bertha Mason is the mysterious first wife of the character that the eponymous narrator eventually marries
Set in 1812, features a Luddite riot; eponymous character based on the author's sister Emily Click to show or hide the answer
John Buchan Protagonist goes on the run in the Scottish borders, being the prime suspect in a murder that took place in his flat "near Portland Place", in London Click to show or hide the answer
Mikhail Bulgakov Said to have inspired the Rolling Stones song Sympathy for the Devil Click to show or hide the answer
Anthony Burgess 'Nadsat' is a fictional 'argot' used by the principal characters in Click to show or hide the answer
Francis Hodgson Burnett Title character is heir to the Earl of Dorincourt Click to show or hide the answer
Edgar Rice Burroughs John Clayton and Jane Porter are the leading characters in (series) Click to show or hide the answer
Lewis CarrollThe Jabberwock appears in Click to show or hide the answer
Miguel de Cervantes Lady Dulcinea de Toboso appears in Click to show or hide the answer
Henri Charrière 1969: highly fictionalised memoir about his incarceration in and escape from the French penal colony of French Guiana; filmed in 1973, with Steve McQueen in the central (title) role Click to show or hide the answer
Gabriel Chevalier About the controversy arising from the building of a public urinal Click to show or hide the answer
Agatha Christie Title comes from Shakespeare's Macbeth (see Ray Bradbury) Click to show or hide the answer
Arthur C. Clarke Short story on which 2001: a Space Odyssey was based Click to show or hide the answer
John ClelandMemoirs of a Woman of Pleasure: original title of Click to show or hide the answer
Eoin Colfer "Official" sixth part of Douglas Adams' Hitch–Hiker trilogy, published 2009 (30th anniversary of the original) Click to show or hide the answer
Suzanne Collins "Young adult" book and film trilogy, set in the future totalitarian state of Panem; central character Katniss Everdeen; Catching Fire and Mockingjay are the second and third volumes Click to show or hide the answer
Wilkie Collins Anne Catherick is the title character of Click to show or hide the answer
Joseph ConradNovella (1899) about a voyage up the Congo River, in the heart of Africa; the narrator, Marlow, tells of his obsession with the ivory trader Kurtz, to friends aboard a boat anchored on the Thames in London, creating a parallel between London and Africa as places of darkness Click to show or hide the answer
Joseph ConradInspired by a 1907 attempt to blow up the Greenwich Observatory Click to show or hide the answer
Dante Alighieri Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso: collectively entitled Click to show or hide the answer
Roald DahlSequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Click to show or hide the answer
Charles Darwin His second major book on evolutionary theory – considers the origins of the human species Click to show or hide the answer
Daniel DefoeBased on the true story of Alexander Selkirk Click to show or hide the answer
Colin Dexter Republished in 1999 as "the last Inspector Morse book" Click to show or hide the answer
Baroness D'Orczy Title character was Sir Percy Blakeney Click to show or hide the answer
Fyodr Dostoevsky Raskolnikoff: impoverished student, central character of Click to show or hide the answer
Alexandre Dumas (fils) Inspired by Marie Duplessis, who died of tuberculosis in 1847 Click to show or hide the answer
Alexandre Dumas (père) 1845 sequel to The Three Musketeers (1844) Click to show or hide the answer
Daphne du Maurier Named after a real public house in Cornwall Click to show or hide the answer
George Eliot Tells of infanticide in the village of Hayslope Click to show or hide the answer
Tom and Maggie Tulliver are the central characters of Click to show or hide the answer
Subtitled A Study of Provincial Life Click to show or hide the answer
T. S. EliotWilliam Faulkner took the title A Handful of Dust from Click to show or hide the answer
Bruce Feirstein 1982 bestseller: subtitled A Guidebook to All that is Truly Masculine Click to show or hide the answer
F. Scott FitzGerald Spoiler alert: the title character (a mysterious millionaire) is shot dead by George Wilson, a garage owner, who believes he (the title character) has killed his wife Myrtle in a car accident Click to show or hide the answer
Nick Carraway is the narrator of
Title comes from Keats's Ode to a Nightingale Click to show or hide the answer
Gustave Flaubert The story of Emma Roualt, the unfaithful wife of a doctor, who takes arsenic after being refused money by her lover Click to show or hide the answer
Ian FlemingThe first James Bond novel Click to show or hide the answer
Frederick Forsyth Tells how a journalist hunts down a Nazi war criminal Click to show or hide the answer
Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué Fairy story about a water nymph who marries a knight in order to gain a mortal soul, on the condition that he must never see her on Saturdays when she reverts to her mermaid shape; hugely popular in the 19th century – mentioned in Little Women; subject of operas by Hoffmann and Tchaikovsky (and many other adaptations) Click to show or hide the answer
John FowlesSara Woodruff is the eponymous central character of Click to show or hide the answer
Sir James Fraser Wide–ranging comparative study of mythology and religion, first published 1890 Click to show or hide the answer
Stella Gibbons Aunt Ada Doom was permanently traumatised by seeing "something nasty in the woodshed" as a child Click to show or hide the answer
William Golding Title is a translation of the Hebrew phrase that's the origin of the word Beelzebub Click to show or hide the answer
Oliver Goldsmith The Mistakes of a Night: alternate title of (play) Click to show or hide the answer
Dr. Primrose is the eponymous narrator of Click to show or hide the answer
Kenneth Grahame Pink Floyd took the title of their first album, Piper at the Gates of Dawn, from a chapter in Click to show or hide the answer
Graham Greene Mr. Wormold, a vacuum cleaner salesman, becomes an MI5 agent Click to show or hide the answer
1932 novel, published in the USA as Orient Express Click to show or hide the answer
Mark Haddon Took its title from a remark made by Sherlock Holmes in a short story entitled Silver Blaze Click to show or hide the answer
H. Rider Haggard Story of an African queen who has discovered the secret of eternal life Click to show or hide the answer
Thomas Hardy Subtitled A Pure Woman Click to show or hide the answer
Subtitled A Matter of Character Click to show or hide the answer
John Loveday's trumpet is "silenced for ever upon one of the bloody battlefields of Spain" Click to show or hide the answer
Joseph HellerClosing Time (1995) is a sequel to Click to show or hide the answer
Ernest Hemingway 1932 (non-fiction) book: looks at the history, traditions and appeal of bullfighting Click to show or hide the answer
Story of a love affair between US Lieutenant Frederic Henry and English nurse Catherine Barkley; based on the author's experiences as an ambulance driver during World War I Click to show or hide the answer
Set in the Spanish Civil War; title comes from John Donne's Devotions Click to show or hide the answer
Santiago: central character of Click to show or hide the answer
Nick Hornby The book that made his name: published in 1992, a memoir of the trials, tribulations and traumas that resulted from his following Arsenal FC from childhood into his early thirties Click to show or hide the answer
Features a record shop called Championship Vinyl Click to show or hide the answer
Aldous Huxley Set in the year 632 AF (After Ford) Click to show or hide the answer
Centrifugal bumblepuppy, Riemann surface tennis and escalator squash are fictional sports mentioned in
Washington Irving Schoolmaster Ichabod Crane is pursued by a headless horseman (short story) Click to show or hide the answer
Jerome K. Jerome Subtitled To say nothing of the dog Click to show or hide the answer
Harris, George and Jay are
Sequel to Three Men in a Boat (using a German word for a journey without an end, i.e. a round trip) Click to show or hide the answer
James JonesAbout life in the US Navy before Pearl Harbor; published 1951; title comes from Kipling's ballad Gentlemen Rankers Click to show or hide the answer
James Joyce1939 comic novel (his last major work): opening line is a sentence fragment, which continues from the unfinished closing line
Features the dreams and nightmares of Dublin tavern keeper H. C. Earwhicker
Click to show or hide the answer
James JoyceTakes place entirely in Dublin on 16th June 1904; said to be based on Homer's Odyssey Click to show or hide the answer
Thomas Kenneally 1982 Booker Prize winner, on which the film Schindler's List was based Click to show or hide the answer
Stephen King His first published work - telling the story of a girl with telekinetic powers Click to show or hide the answer
Title is the number of a New York hotel room (filmed in 2007 starring John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson) Click to show or hide the answer
Features a reanimated zombie cat called Winston Churchill (or Church for short) Click to show or hide the answer
1981: the title character is a rabid St. Bernard dog Click to show or hide the answer
Charles Kingsley Gave its name to a seaside town in North Devon Click to show or hide the answer
Rudyard Kipling How the whale got his throat, How the camel got his hump, How the rhinoceros got his skin, How the leopard got his spots, The Elephant's child (how the elephant got his trunk), The cat that walked by himself, and others: collective title Click to show or hide the answer
Title character is an elf, borrowed from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, who declares himself "the oldest Old Thing in England" Click to show or hide the answer
Stieg Larsson Originally published in Swedish with a title that translates as Men Who Hate Women Click to show or hide the answer
Swedish title translates as "the castle in the air that got blown up" (third novel in the Millennium trilogy) Click to show or hide the answer
D. H. Lawrence Central character is an amateur flautist, the flute being a metaphor for the biblical reference in the title Click to show or hide the answer
Original title Tenderness; first published (privately) in Italy in 1928, then in France and Australia in 1929; an expurgated edition was published in the UK in 1932, and the full version by Penguin in 1960, resulting in a famous obscenity trial Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Tells the story of sisters Gudrun and Ursula Brangwen, anhd their respective relationships with school inspector Rupert Birkin and coal–mine heir Gerald Crich Click to show or hide the answer
Ursula Brangwen (central character of Women in Love) first appeared in Click to show or hide the answer
Harper Lee "First draft" of To Kill a Mockingbird – probably not intended for publication, but controversially published in July 2015 and described as a "prequel"; she died in February 2016 Click to show or hide the answer
Anita Loos The Illuminating Diary of a Professional Lady is the subtitle of Click to show or hide the answer
Sequel to Gentlemen Prefer Blondes Click to show or hide the answer
Richard MabeyInfluential guide to Britain's wild foods, first published in 1972: reflects ever–increasing eco–awareness and popular interest in finding different, and more natural, sources of food Click to show or hide the answer
MadonnaControversial photo–book, published 1992 Click to show or hide the answer
Thomas Mann Life of German composer Adrian Leverkuhn, "as told by a friend" Click to show or hide the answer
Hilary Mantel Sequel to Wolf Hall – Man Booker winner 2013 Click to show or hide the answer
Captain Maryatt Edward, Humphrey, Alice and Elizabeth Bedford Click to show or hide the answer
W. Somerset Maugham Early (1908) novel featuring occultist Oliver Haddo – a caricature of Aleister Crowley, who accused Maugham of plagiarism (in a review written under the pseudonym Oliver Haddo) Click to show or hide the answer
Compton Mackenzie Based on the real life wrecking of the SS Politician off Eriskay in 1941 Click to show or hide the answer
Spike Milligan Comic novel, published 1963, about a fictional Irish village split into two by partition Click to show or hide the answer
John MiltonProse tragedy whose title character was "Eyeless in Gaza" (giving Aldous Huxley the title of his novel) Click to show or hide the answer
Margaret Mitchell Ba Ba Black Sheep: original title of; final title comes from a poem by Ernest Dowson Click to show or hide the answer
Sir Thomas More Title is the name of an imaginary island – now a byword for a perfect society Click to show or hide the answer
Vladimir Nabokov Dolores Haze is the full name of the title character of Click to show or hide the answer
Baroness Orczy Sir Percy Blakeney is better known as Click to show or hide the answer
George Orwell His first novel (1934): partly inspired by his experiences as a colonial policeman Click to show or hide the answer
Based on his experiences in the Spanish Civil War Click to show or hide the answer
TV shows Big Brother and Room 101 got their titles from Click to show or hide the answer
Britain is referred to as Airstrip One, in
The Last Man in Europe was one of the titles considered for
Sylvia PlathSemi–autobiographical novel: published 1963, under the pseudonym Victoria Lucas, a month before her suicide; first published under her real name 1966; not published in the USA until 1972. Title refers to her being trapped by depression, struggling for breath Click to show or hide the answer
Marcel ProustSwann's Way is the title of the first of seven parts of Click to show or hide the answer
Terry PratchettThe sixth Discworld novel, and the first to feature the three witches Esmerelda 'Granny' Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, and Magrat Garlick (Granny Weatherwax had previously appeared in Equal Rites, the third novel) Click to show or hide the answer
Ian RankinThe last Inspector Rebus novel (2007) Click to show or hide the answer
Erich Maria Remarque English title of Im Westen Nichts Neues (literally Nothing New in the West) – a harrowing novel of the First World War, first published in 1928 as a serial (book form 1929); banned by the Nazis; sequel Der Weg Zurück (The Road Back – 1930–1) Click to show or hide the answer
Jean Rhys 1966 prequel to Jane Eyre; tells the story of Bertha Mason, Mr Rochester's first wife – known in this book as Antoinette Cosway Click to show or hide the answer
Salman Rushdie Title refers to a section of the Quran that allows intercessory prayers to be made to three Pagan Meccan goddesses; publication caused outrage among some Muslims, who saw it as mocking their faith, prompting Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (then Supreme Leader of Iran) to issue a fatwā calling for Rushdie's death, on 14 February 1989 Click to show or hide the answer
Sir Walter Scott Title character marries Rose, the daughter of Baron Bradwardine, after being rejected by the passionate Flora Mac–Ivor Click to show or hide the answer
Named after Edinburgh's Tollbooth jail Click to show or hide the answer
Robin Hood and Little John appear in Click to show or hide the answer
Scott created the name Cedric, by accident, in
Sellars and Yeatman Contains 103 Good Things, 5 Bad Kings and 2 Genuine Dates Click to show or hide the answer
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley 1818: subtitled A Modern Prometheus; originated in a challenge laid down by Lord Byron during a holiday in Switzerland (1816) Click to show or hide the answer
Richard B. Sheridan Mrs. Malaprop first appeared in (play) Click to show or hide the answer
John Steinbeck Based on the story of Cain and Abel Click to show or hide the answer
Title comes from a Burns poem (To a mouse) Click to show or hide the answer
Robert Louis Stevenson Inspired by the true story of William Brodie (hanged 1788) Click to show or hide the answer
The Sea Cook: original title of Click to show or hide the answer
Foremast Hill, Mizzenmast Hill and Spyglass Hill appear on
Inspired by the Appin Murder, a real-life event that took place on the west coast of Scotland in 1752 Click to show or hide the answer
The brig Covenant is wrecked on the notorious Torran Rocks, off the Isle of Mull
Sequel to Kidnapped Click to show or hide the answer
Josephine Tey1951 novel that attempted to rehabilitate Richard III Click to show or hide the answer
W. M. Thackeray Becky Sharp is the central character of Click to show or hide the answer
Flora Thompson Published posthumously in 1948: title is a quotation from Wordsworth's After–Thought to his series of sonnets on the River Duddon Click to show or hide the answer
J. R. R. Tolkien There and Back Again is the subtitle of Click to show or hide the answer
His last major work: a collection of his writings about the history and mythology of Middle–Earth, edited by his son Christopher and published posthumously in 1977 Click to show or hide the answer
Leo Tolstoy Story of a married woman's passion for Vronsky, a young officer, and her tragic fate Click to show or hide the answer
Title character throws herself under a train as her lover departs with another woman
Mark Twain Begins with the title character faking his own death in order to escape from his drunken father Click to show or hide the answer
Gore VidalControversial 1968 novel about a young, sexually aggressive woman who turns out to be a transsexual Click to show or hide the answer
Horace Walpole His most famous work: often said to have been the first Gothic novel Click to show or hide the answer
Evelyn Waugh The Sacred and Profane Memories of Captain Charles Ryder is the subtitle of Click to show or hide the answer
Paul Pennyfeather is the unfortunate hero of Click to show or hide the answer
A Novel About Journalists is the subtitle of Click to show or hide the answer
H. G. WellsShort story: title comes from a quotation from Desiderus Erasmus – often wrongly attributed to Wells himself Click to show or hide the answer
Oscar Wilde Title of a long letter written from prison to his former lover Lord Alfred Douglas Click to show or hide the answer
His only novel: the story of a beautiful and hedonistic young man, whose portrait ages with every sin he commits Click to show or hide the answer
Henry Williamson Published in 1927, filmed in 1979, subtitled His Joyful Water–Life and Death in the Country of the Two Rivers Click to show or hide the answer
Jeanette Winterson Semi–autobiographical novel about growing up in Accrington, Lancashire (1985 – serialised on BBC2 in 1990) Click to show or hide the answer
Kit Williams 1979 picture book that sparked a UK–wide treasure hunt, and inspired a genre: the author and illustrator had hidden a jewelled golden hare, and the book (allegedly) gave clues to its whereabouts Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer

© Haydn Thompson 2017