Another week, another top ten list! I’ve not done a lot of these in the past, but I’m at the point in my 2017 reading that I’d rather come up with fun book options for my readers than write a review of another book that left me uninspired. I don’t know about other bloggers, but there are two kinds of reviews that come naturally to me: those for books I’m evangelical about because of my love for them and those that are snarky for one reason or another. I try and stay away from writing the negative reviews, but my goodness, some books you need to be warned about! Anyway, so much of this year has been the dreaded blahs and those reviews are a slog.
All the more reason for something really fun: Ten unusual books with unusual titles to match. Thank you, The Broke and the Bookish for such a great theme! As I started looking at books I’ve read with unique titles, I realized they also fell into little categories of their own.
Story as Quirky as the Title
Both of these novels made me so happy to read. Between the two of them I got a fabulous mix of magical realism, mystery, childhood, and one of my favorite components in reading (and probably life): snarky, intelligent humor.
The Title is the Message
Even though one is contemporary and one is historical, both of these novels broke my heart a little bit with their painful portraits of intolerance and where it leaves us.
Writing as Unusual as the Title
In each case, these novels knocked me over with their creative reach. The Diver’s Clothes is written in the 2nd person which is really difficult to do and almost impossible to do well, but it works. As for A Girl, the writing style is indescribable. Literally. It is free form prose. In both cases, they’re thought provoking novels, worth the effort.
Neither the Title or the Story Worked
Did you honestly think I’d get all the way through without at least two novels that did not work for me at all? Have we met? In the case of Rabbit Back (which may win for weirdest title of all), it could possibly be a case of translation because the novel was originally in Finnish, but that excuse can’t be used for The Portable Veblen. However, it was highly rated by a number of Goodreads readers. I found it to be bizarre and not in a good way.
The Title Makes Sense Once You Read the Book
There’s a distinct contrast between these two novels: Lincoln won the 2017 Booker prize and you’ve probably never heard of Captain Flint. What is the same is that I thought both were gorgeously written stories, one about grief and the other about family relationships and the truth.
What is the most unusual book title you’ve read?
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