Unique Book Titles
These ten unique book titles are just the tip of the iceberg of weird and wonderful titles. Thanks to The Broke and the Bookish for this Top Ten prompt, it’s one I know I will be doing again.
Five Quarters of the Orange by Joanne Harris
As one of my all-time favourite books, I return to this dark story again and again. Set in France with roots in the WWII German occupation, this story is beautiful, tragic and unforgettable.
And yes once you’ve read it the odd title makes perfect sense. Get yourself a copy today!
When Framboise Simon returns to a small village on the banks of the Loire, the locals do not recognize her as the daughter of the infamous Mirabelle Dartigen – the woman they still hold responsible for a terrible tragedy that took place during the German occupation decades before. Although Framboise hopes for a new beginning she quickly discovers that past and present are inextricably intertwined. Nowhere is this truth more apparent than in the scrapbook of recipes she has inherited from her dead mother.
With this book, Framboise re-creates her mother’s dishes, which she serves in her small creperie. And yet as she studies the scrapbook – searching for clues to unlock the contradiction between her mother’s sensuous love of food and often cruel demeanour – she begins to recognize a deeper meaning behind Mirabelle’s cryptic scribbles. Within the journal’s tattered pages lies the key to what actually transpired the summer Framboise was nine years old. – Abstract from Goodreads
Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller
This is another one of my favourite books, one which has pride of place at the top of my bookshelf. See an earlier post The books that changed the way I saw the world for my thoughts.
In Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Alexandra Fuller remembers her African childhood with candor and sensitivity. Though it is a diary of an unruly life in an often inhospitable place, it is suffused with Fuller’s endearing ability to find laughter, even when there is little to celebrate. Fuller’s debut is unsentimental and unflinching but always captivating. In wry and sometimes hilarious prose, she stares down disaster and looks back with rage and love at the life of an extraordinary family in an extraordinary time. – Abstract from Goodreads
No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
All the books in this beautifully written series have unique titles from The Kalahari Typing School for Men to Tea Time for the Traditionally Built. The stories, set in Botswana, are full of eclectic, enchanting characters and humorous situations.
Precious Ramotswe has only just set up shop as Botswana’s No.1 (and only) lady detective when she is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. However, the case that tugs at her heart, and lands her in danger, is a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witchdoctors. – Abstract from Goodreads
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy
I loved Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things so this is high on my TBR (To be read list).
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness takes us on an intimate journey of many years across the Indian subcontinent–from the cramped neighborhoods of Old Delhi and the roads of the new city to the mountains and valleys of Kashmir and beyond, where war is peace and peace is war.
It is an aching love story and a decisive remonstration, a story told in a whisper, in a shout, through unsentimental tears and sometimes with a bitter laugh. Each of its characters is indelibly, tenderly rendered. Its heroes are people who have been broken by the world they live in and then rescued, patched together by acts of love–and by hope.
The tale begins with Anjum–who used to be Aftab–unrolling a threadbare Persian carpet in a city graveyard she calls home. We encounter the odd, unforgettable Tilo and the men who loved her–including Musa, sweetheart and ex-sweetheart, lover and ex-lover; their fates are as entwined as their arms used to be and always will be. We meet Tilo’s landlord, a former suitor, now an intelligence officer posted to Kabul. And then we meet the two Miss Jebeens: the first a child born in Srinagar and buried in its overcrowded Martyrs’ Graveyard; the second found at midnight, abandoned on a concrete sidewalk in the heart of New Delhi. – Abstract from Goodreads
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
I listened to the Audible(Audio) edition of this stunning book, narrated by Zach Appelman, and loved it.
Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure’s agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall.
In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up with his younger sister, Jutta, both enchanted by a crude radio Werner finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy and, ultimately, makes him a highly specialized tracker of the Resistance. Werner travels through the heart of Hitler Youth to the far-flung outskirts of Russia, and finally into Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure. – Abstract from Goodreads
The Girl Who Wrote in Silk by Kelli Estes
The Girl Who Wrote in Silk was inspired by true events and I’m looking forward to reading it.
Inara Erickson is exploring her deceased aunt’s island estate when she finds an elaborately stitched piece of fabric hidden in the house. As she peels back layer upon layer of the secrets it holds, Inara’s life becomes interwoven with that of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl mysteriously driven from her home a century before. Through the stories Mei Lein tells in silk, Inara uncovers a tragic truth that will shake her family to its core — and force her to make an impossible choice. – Abstract from Goodreads
Who Will Run the Frog Hospital? by Lorrie Moore
When I read the title my first thought was of my sister who as a child made cotton-wool beds for ‘sick’ frogs in her cupboard. I couldn’t resist adding it to this list!
The summer Berie was fifteen, she and her best friend Sils had jobs at Storyland in upstate New York where Berie sold tickets to see the beautiful Sils portray Cinderella in a strapless evening gown. They spent their breaks smoking, joking, and gossiping. After work they followed their own reckless rules, teasing the fun out of small town life, sleeping in the family station wagon, and drinking borrowed liquor from old mayonnaise jars. But no matter how wild, they always managed to escape any real danger—until the adoring Berie sees that Sils really does need her help—and then everything changes. – Abstract from Goodreads
The Goat Children by Jordan Elizabeth (Jordan Mierek)
I have heard great things about Jordan Elizabeth’s writing so I am looking forward to The Goat Children.
When Keziah de Forest’s grandmother, Oma, is diagnosed with dementia, the seventeen-year-old makes the decision to leave her family and move to New Winchester to care for Oma. However, the decision comes with burdens Keziah never expected. Each day becomes a greater weight and loving the woman she once cherished becomes a chore.
Resentful of her hardships in New Winchester and the family secrets buried in the attic, Keziah finds herself drawn to Oma’s ramblings about the Goat Children, a mythical warrior class who ride winged horses and locate people in need, while attempting to destroy evil in the world. Oma sees the Goat Children everywhere, and as Keziah reads the stories her grandmother wrote about them, she begins to question if they really exist. – Abstract from Goodreads
Life on the Refrigerator Door by Alice Kuipers
A heartfelt, touching story which is uniquely narrated via notes on the fridge door between a mother and her daughter. Don’t miss this beautiful book. Tissues optional.
Claire and her mother are running out of time, but they don’t know it. Not yet. Claire is wrapped up with the difficulties of her bourgeoning adulthood—boys, school, friends, identity; Claire’s mother, a single mom, is rushed off her feet both at work and at home. They rarely find themselves in the same room at the same time, and it often seems that the only thing they can count on are notes to each other on the refrigerator door. When home is threatened by a crisis, their relationship experiences a momentous change. Forced to reevaluate the delicate balance between their personal lives and their bond as mother and daughter, Claire and her mother find new love and devotion for one another deeper than anything they had ever imagined. – Abstract from Goodreads
White Dog Fell from the Sky by Eleanor Morse
I recently came across this historical fiction book on Goodreads and added it to my TBR. It sounds very good.
In apartheid South Africa in 1976, medical student Isaac Muthethe is forced to flee his country after witnessing a friend murdered by white members of the South African Defense Force. He is smuggled into Botswana, where he is hired as a gardener by a young American woman, Alice Mendelssohn, who has abandoned her Ph.D. studies to follow her husband to Africa. When Isaac goes missing and Alice goes searching for him, what she finds will change her life and inextricably bind her to this sunburned, beautiful land. – Abstract from Goodreads
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