Amber’s Rambles – Names in Titles (#11)

~Amber’s Rambles~

Welcome to YA Indulgences and this is Amber’s Rambles. If you don’t know what Amber’s Rambles is, it’s my semi-weekly feature where I discuss various book or blogging topics. 🙂 To see past discussions, you can go here.
It’s been more than a while since I last posted which I am so sad about, but I’m back and I’m posting on a subject I’ve been wanting to do for a while now:
Names As Book Titles
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet”
Does the same apply towards book titles though?
This poetic line is from one of the most well known plays, Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. In this scene Romeo has gone to Juliet’s home and she talks about his name, the whole cause of separation between the two warring families.
Have you ever noticed how often names are used in book titles? From classic plays like the aforementioned Romeo and Juliet as well as Hamlet and MacBeth, to classic books like Jane Eyre, Emma, and Anna Karenina, to modern YA Fiction such as Zac and Mia, Althea & Oliver, Eleanor & Park, and Emmy & Oliver, it seems that using names is becoing more popular in fiction. But why? Is because it’s easy to just name a book after the leading character(s)? Is it because there is an actual trend occurring?
What I wonder though is how well these titles are received to readers. Are the interested in books solely by the title? Can they capture their attention with only a character’s name? I’ll be the first to say that when I see a name as a book title’s, I am automatically intrigued, but I’m not sure why this is. Maybe it’s because I already know who the book will be about or maybe there’s just something about having a book named after a character.
I thought I would share some of the book titles I know of that feature names:

~Modern YA~

Amy and Roger's Epic DetourDash and Lily's Book of DaresNick_and_NorahAristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of The UniverseIsla and The Happily Ever AFterAnnaandthefrenchkissEleanor and park coverAlthea and OliverEmmy and OliverThe Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender
Lola and The Boy Next DoorLooking For AlaskaAn Abundance of KatherinesVivian Versus The Apocalypse The Truth About AliceGlory O'Brien's History of The Future Forgive_Me_Leonard_Peacock Jackaby The Miseducation of Cameron PostNaomi and Ely's No Kiss List
Vivian_Divine_Is_Dead The_Secrets_Of_Lily_Graves The_Half_Life_Of_Molly_PierceCinderScarlet

~Classic Literature~

The_Great_Gatsby The_Curious_Case_Of_Benjamin_Button Hamlet Macbeth Romeo and Juliet Emma.Mech1.36.qxd Anna_Karenina Oliver_Twist Jane_EyreAdventures_of_Huckleberry_Funn

Anne_of_Green_Gables Emily of New MoonAlice's Adventures In Wonderland

~Other Books~

Charlie_and_The_Chocolate_Factory MatildaHarry Potter and The Sorcerers Stone

So it appears that naming books after characters has gone on for a long time, since the 1800s. What do you think of using characters’ names as titles? Do they draw you in? Do they work? What do you think? Let me know in the comments. I may end up doing a series on various book titles so keep an eye out. 🙂

About Amber (YA Indulgences)

Amber is a 20-something woman who enjoys reading, writing, listening to music and taking walks. She has a book blog called YA Indulgences . She is still trying to figure out what she's doing with her life, but she's confident that time will tell. In the meantime she's heading towards the goal of becoming a renowned blogger. View all posts by Amber (YA Indulgences)

23 responses to “Amber’s Rambles – Names in Titles (#11)

  • Kat @ Perusing Bookshelves

    I think using character’s names as titles is a good way to draw a reader’s attention. Like when I’m randomly browsing through books to buy, I get sidetracked by titles that have good character names in them. I think that’s because when I read a book that has a character’s name as its title instead of, well, a normal one, it gives me more space to imagine what the book is about. It’s sort of the same thing as one-word titles. My mind unconsciously connects the character the book is named after to the story and it makes for a better reading experience.

    Great topic to talk about, Amber!


    • Amber (YA Indulgences)

      Wow, sorry for the super late reply, somehow your comment got in the spam folder. 😦

      Character names can attract me to a book, as long as it’s not my own. Haha. It’s interesting to wonder what the book will be about when it’s just the character names without knowing anything else. Thanks for stopping by!


  • Laura

    I think naming a book after the characters tells you that it’s going to be very character-focused (as opposed to being about lots of different people in a huge setting like a war or something), and as that’s the kind of thing I like I think it does draw me in. I’d imagine it puts pressure on the author though to come up with good names, especially when there’s two of them (like Eleanor and Park)!
    I’d never actually thought much about this before though, so great topic!


    • Amber (YA Indulgences)

      I agree, it’s most likely going to be very character focused and driven. 🙂 Yes, that makes me wonder if when authors write if they generally already have the title in their minds or if sometimes they go back and rename it to the “character name” title.


  • lab1990

    I don’t have anything against them, but if it’s JUST the name, sometimes it’s not all that original sounding. I like the titles that feature the name within a phrase like the HP books, etc.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Amber (YA Indulgences)

      I agree, while I do love titles with names, I love it much more when there’s something else IN the title that tells what it’s about, like “The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender” or “Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Something that tells me something about the book. Thank you for stopping by! ❤


  • Melanie (YA Midnight Reads)

    I don’t really have an opinion on eponymous book titles–I don’t hate them but I don’t love them either. I do like some of them–like when I saw Ari & Dante I wanted to read it for obvious reasons, heh.

    Interesting post, Amber! <33

    Liked by 1 person

  • Lola

    I don’t really have anything with or against using names as the title. I never really stood still and thought about it, so I found it interesting to read your post. Interesting to see how many books you found with names in the title.


  • readwritelove28

    That’s a really interesting point! I never realized it, but yes, it does seem like that is becoming a pattern. I honestly don’t mind either way, but I will say that I become more intrigued when the name is unique, such as “Emmy” or “Eleanor” etc…


  • Natalie @Natflix&Books

    Hmm. I’ve never really given it a whole lot of thought. I’m definitely more drawn to a book based on its cover than I am based on its title. I do think titles that are just a name are a bit boring, and would probably be more drawn to books that have a little bit more to them: like Isla and the Happily Ever After and Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Amber (YA Indulgences)

      Yeah, it was just soemthing I’d really noticed. 🙂 I’m definitely drawn to covers more often than titles, but titles can be pretty eye catching too, especially ones that “have a little bit more to them” like The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender, I hear that title and I’m like “Whoa, I need to figure out what these strange and beautiful sorrows are”, plus it has a gorgeous cover. Thank you Natalie! And thanks for stopping by. ❤


  • Rebecca

    I’ve read a few of these so I may be drawn to books with the characters names in the title, I haven’t really thought about it. I guess having the characters names be the title is better then having a title that doesn’t fit.

    Liked by 1 person

  • vlangloisx3

    I’ve never really thought of that! Hmm, I think that the reason names are used in titles is to draw attention to that one character in particular. So it focuses more on their development rather than anything else? I don’t know. I guess that could be the marketing for it. It doesn’t bother me either way 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Amber (YA Indulgences)

      Oh definitely, it’s definitely to center in on one (or two) characters, if it’s a guy and girl’s name, you can most likely guess right there will be some sort of romance going on. I think they would seem to be more character driven, like you said with their development than anything else. 🙂 I think it could maybe be a marketing for it.


  • Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    I agree that names in titles intrigue me, but I’m not drawn to a book if the names of the characters are the full title (like Eleanor & Park – I had to see this book around A LOT before it really caught my eye). I actually JUST got through commenting on Cynthia’s post about books that have different US and UK titles and saying that I wouldn’t give the book Amy & Matthew a second look (but it’s actually the same as Say What You Will here in the US, which I AM interested in).

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    Liked by 1 person

  • Monthly Recap: January ’15 | Young Adult Indulgences

    […] Commented Post: Amber’s Rambles – Names in Titles (#11) (Ten […]


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