Orange Prize Giveaway #14: Let The Northern Lights Erase Your Name

Let The Northern Lights Erase Your Name by Vendela Vida

Giveaway closed. Stay tuned for the winner!

Up for Grabs: Let The Northern Lights Erase Your Name by Vendela Vida

Your activity: I just love the title of today’s book giveaway. It’s probably one of the coolest book titles I’ve stumbled across. What great book titles have you seen? Have you ever read a book based solely on its title? Let’s discuss in our comments below!


Giveaway ends at 9pm EST. Winner will be chosen randomly from those who comment on this blog only (Facebook comments will not count). I will announce the winner on this blog, so be sure to check back or subscribe (look for black “Sign Me Up!” button on top left).

Open to all participants – no matter where you live or if you’ve won already!

You can still play even if you don’t want the book. Just let me know in your comments to exclude you from the drawing.

Thanks for participating!


37 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Prashansa
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 19:26:45

    Who do you think you are? by Alice Munro
    Dance of the Happy Shades by Munro
    The Finkler Question by Howard Jacobson
    How Late It Was, How Late by James Kelman
    The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman


  2. Deborah F
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 19:39:15

    I don’t think I’ve read a book purely on the basis of the title. Embarressed to say say so. But – I’ve been grabbed by a cover on a book -and that is Diane Setterfield ‘s book – The Thirteenth Tale. Who could resist the cover – a lucious pile of books, with a long red ribbon hanging from the books as a book mark -but looking like a tongue. Oh yes – that was one lucious cover and so was the story – so glad I took a chance on that book! 🙂


  3. Layen
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 19:45:28

    Some interesting titles I can recall are:
    Before They Are Hanged by Joe Abercrombie
    The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
    The City of Dreaming Books by Walter Moers
    The Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachan
    Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl

    I haven’t read a book solely based on the title as I usually refer to the synopsis first, but I do check out the synopsis of books with eye-catching titles more often than not


  4. char
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 19:51:44

    I love browsing by book titles when I have the time! I bought The Good Cemetery Guide by South African writer Consuelo Roland based solely on its title (it wasnt such a great book, unfortunately).
    My favorites (which were also incredible reads):
    The War of Don Emmanuel’s Nether Parts – Louis de Bernieres
    Death with Interruptions – Jose Saramago
    and an old play by Kenyan writer Ngugi wa Thiong’o – I will Marry when I Want 🙂


    • mrstreme
      Jul 28, 2011 @ 09:07:26

      Congratulations, Char! You won today’s drawing! Please send me your mailing address when you have a second: jillceleste AT hotmail DOT com.



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  6. Kim Bal-Al
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 19:53:37

    I love quirky titles and I often like titles of novels that seem to involve food 🙂
    The Earth Hums in B Flat by by Mari Strachan
    The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
    The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
    The Kalahari Typing School for Men & Tea Time for the Traditionally Built both by Alexander McCall Smith.
    Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg
    I Was Told There’d Be Cake by Sloane Crosley
    …it’s hard to stop….oh does that also sounds a bit like the title to a book?! 😉


  7. Misha
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:06:32

    I haven’t read a book solely because of its title, but some books with cool titles I’ve read are:
    The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
    The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
    Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant
    The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets


  8. Genny Tunbridge
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:08:09

    I don’t know if I’ve ever chosen to read a book solely because of its title, but there are some titles that attract because they are obscure and not obvious:
    An Instance of the Fingerpost by Ian Pears
    while others that appeal because they have a hint of narrative about them, sounding like the beginning of the story or a postcard message which whets the appetite for more…
    Started early, took my dog – Kate Atkinson
    As I walked out one midsummer morning – Laurie Lee


  9. Tania
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:10:24

    I’m rather fond of “Sea Otters Gambolling in the Wild, Wild Surf”. From this Orange year alone, I also really liked “A Visit From the Goon Squad” and “Grace Williams Says It Loud”, both for titles and the books themselves. I’m a sucker for a clever/eye catching title. 🙂


  10. Linda
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:21:31

    A catchy title will certainly make me investigate a book. Some of my favorites, as titles (not necessarily as BOOKS, if you know what I mean):

    I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
    Light in August
    The Yiddish Policemen’s Union
    In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead
    Howard’s End is on the Landing


  11. Ally
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:26:07

    I don’t usually read a book just because of its title, but when you find a book called “Everyday, God prays at me”, you have to read it. It’s by Chris Simion, a lovely woman writer and theater director who is only 34 years old but whose books are simply incredible.

    Also, there are some titles that intrigued me:
    Sweetness at the bottom of the pie (Alan Bradley)
    The Solitude of prime numbers (Paolo Giodano)
    How Proust can change your life (Alain de Botton)
    The Elegance of the hedgehog (Muriel Barbery)

    All these books proved to be unforgettable!
    Thanks for the giveaway 🙂


  12. Jayme@Beachreader
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:31:02

    A great title and/or book cover has seduced me into buying:

    Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
    The Once and Future King by T.H. White
    This SIde of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
    The Solitude of Prime Numbers by Paolo Giordano
    The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall


  13. Dee
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:32:36

    I started reading Joyce Carol Oates because her books seemed to have such wonderful titles. I reasoned that anyone with a book called “Because it is Bitter and because it is my Heart”, had to be a good writer!


  14. Nicki
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 20:41:50

    I find almost all Brautigan titles intriguing – my favourites: Willard and his Bowling Trophies, and Revenge of the Lawn. Some of my other favourite titles are One Hundred Years of Solitude, Feersum Endjinn and The Left Hand of Darkness. How could I not read those? 🙂

    The winner is however Christopher Brookmyre for The Attack of the Unsinkable Rubber Ducks.

    Happy reading folks!


  15. Mimi
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 21:39:46

    Great book titles? The first thing that comes to mind is “It”. I get goosebumps just by thinking about it.


  16. nomadreader
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 21:58:05

    My latest favorite: Ali Smith’s There But For The

    It piques my interest!


  17. Helen
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 22:25:23

    Great Titles:
    A Blind Man Can See How Much I Love You – short stories by Amy Bloom
    (and so forth) by Robert Dessaix – which if you know anything of Robert Dessaix’s writing, is just perfect!
    Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl
    Moab is My Washpot by Stephen Fry
    Floating in My Mother’s Palm by Ursula Hegi
    The Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachan
    Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage – short stories by Alice Munro
    Everyman’s Rules for Scientific Living by Carrie Tiffany
    A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami
    How Proust can change your life by Alain de Botton
    Honk If You Are Jesus by Peter Goldsworthy
    Started Early, Took My Dog by Kate Atkinson
    The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag by Alan Bradley
    Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler
    and lots more . . .

    I don’t tend to read a book just based on the title, but it certainly helps! An interesting title will certainly lead me on to investigate the book further


  18. Peggy
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 22:25:37

    We don’t have to look farther than the Orange lists, but I would submit Sharyn McCrumb’s *Bimbos of the Death Sun* and *Zombies of the Gene Pool* (which came out a long time before zombies were hot) as two of my favorites.


  19. Cate (bleuroses)
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 23:49:18

    There are quite a few books have drawn me in based on the title alone!
    If On a Winter’s Night A Traveller
    The American Woman in the Chinese Hat
    Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress
    Because It is Bitter and Because it is My Heart
    I Lock My Door Upon Myself
    The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam

    Nicki – I love Brautigan too. In Watermelon Sugar, The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster, So the Wind Won’t Blow it All Away and so many more!

    This is great fun…Thanks Jill!

    (Not entered in giveaway)


  20. wutheringwillow
    Jul 27, 2011 @ 23:56:11

    Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick and The Killer Inside Me by Jim Thompson caught my eye last year. The Ninth Life of Louis Drax by Liz Jensen is a title that I read this year but the title in itself I remembered from six-seven years ago.

    The School for Scandal and Other Plays is the only book I remember buying just for the title. It intrigued me. “What on earth IS a school for scandal?” I thought to myself. Good thing I did buy it because now Sheridan is one of my favourite authors.


  21. Terri
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 00:39:23

    There were some books I stayed away from for awhile because of their cutesy titles, one being The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, which turned out to be a phenomenal book; But to answer your question, I think the one that stands out is The Voluptuous Delights of Peanut Butter and Jam. And it was such a good read, a very serious book, unlike its title. Another is Half of a Yellow Sun – I loved the title and the book. The Mammoth Cheese intrigues me – again, a book better than its title might suggest.

    Good question, Jill – I’d never given this much thought. I’ve also been drawn to the Northern Lights title and would love to win this book!


  22. Regina Motarjeme
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 01:06:05

    I am currently reading “In the Garden of Beasts”, it is about Berlin in 1933, when the city itself was the center of culture and architectural beauty, but the spirit of the Nazi’s is slowly taken over. The title reflects that perfectly and certainly caught my curiosity!


  23. tanabata
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 01:08:23

    I don’t think I’ve read a book just because it has a great title, but a clever, unique title definitely peaks my interest. And will make me pick up a book to read the blurb when I might not have otherwise. That and a great cover!

    Murakami has some fun titles: A Wild Sheep Chase, and one of my favourites, Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World.

    Some other titles that I really like:
    The Solitude of Prime Numbers
    The Sound of Waves
    The Elegance of the Hedgehog
    The Tenderness of Wolves

    Plus I also have a thing for snow and books set in wintry places so a title with snow in it always catches my eye. LOL.


  24. Barbara Atkins Carlucci
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 01:40:51

    I don’t think I choose the books I read based solely on the titles but I have a couple of titles I would like to mention:
    The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus
    by Sonya Sones
    Satan: His Psychotherapy and Cure by the Unfortunate Dr. Kassler, J.S.P.S.
    by Jeremy Leven
    This was a fun exercise! Thanks!


  25. Bonnie
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 02:24:39

    I have a book on my shelf that I bought specifically for the title….How the Soldier Repaired the Gramophone. I guess I should read it.


  26. ReaderWoman
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 03:16:24

    The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie has my vote – that first title sucked me into the Alan Bradley Flavia de Luce series! All of them have rather unusual titles!


  27. rainpebble/belva
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 04:02:19

    I have most definitely read books based only on their title. I have found many a wondrous author that way. Some that come immediately to mind are:
    The Weight of Water by Anita Shreve, Dancing Naked at the Edge of Dawn by Kris Radish, Blackbird, a childhood lost and found by Jennifer Lauck, Bella Tuscany by Frances Mays, Last Vanities by Fleur Jaeggy, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (I love that title) and Stones from the River just to name a few.


  28. avisannschild
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 04:02:56

    I did a quick scan of my shelves and here are the titles that grabbed my attention:
    Eating Memories by Patricia Anthony
    A Door into Ocean by Joan Slonczewski
    Someone Not Really Her Mother by Harriet Scott Chessman
    North of Nowhere, South of Loss by Janette Turner Hospital
    The Petty Details of So-and-so’s Life by Camilla Gibb
    The Effect of Living Backwards by Heidi Julavits
    The Solace of Leaving Early by Haven Kimmel
    Disturbances in the Field by Lynn Sharon Schwartz
    Saving Fish from Drowning by Amy Tan
    All the Fishes Come Home to Roost by Rachel Manija Brown
    First Comes Love, Then Comes Malaria by Eve Brown-Waite
    Train Go Sorry by Leah Hager Cohen
    Kiss the Sunset Pig by Laurie Gough
    Remembering the Bone House: An Erotics of Place and Space by Nancy Mairs
    An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken
    Paradise, Piece by Piece by Molly Peacock
    Ruined by Reading by Lynn Sharon Schwartz
    Searching for Mercy Street by Linda Gray Sexton
    Eating Children by Jill Tweedie (with Frightening People [Fragments])

    As others have said, a good title piques my interest, but the only book I’ve ever bought for its title alone is The Story of Avis, because my name is Avis and it’s a pretty rare name. Sadly, I still haven’t read the book!

    This is a great question!


  29. avisannschild
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 04:07:08

    Oh dear, I can’t resist adding a couple more (that I don’t own): St Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. Those are two I’ve considered getting based pretty much on their titles alone!


  30. JoV
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 06:02:07

    I probably did but can’t remember which because I ended up thinking about the book rather than the title. What about:
    What I talk about when I talk about running by Haruki Murakami OR
    Controversial ones like
    Jesus the Good man and Christ the scoundrel by Philip Pullman..

    Titles that make you cringe or twist your tongues! Count me in for the draw!


  31. Kim Hannibal Collins
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 07:37:16

    okay, this may be cheesy, but i’ve read “Hannibal” due to my last name. Also HAD to read “Peyton Place” after naming my daughter Peyton!


  32. nulaanne
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 08:23:25

    Dancing Naked at the Edge of Dawn by Kris Radish
    Tapping the Dream Tree by Charles de Lint


  33. mrstreme
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 09:08:06

    Such fabulous titles – thanks to everyone for playing. Let’s give Char a big congrats for winning today’s giveaway!


  34. Linda
    Jul 28, 2011 @ 19:09:31

    I know the giveaway is over, but this title cropped up yesterday, and I just have to share: Here’s Looking at Euclid.


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