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The title of a book is a big marketing decision. Titles can deter readers, or attract them like flies (flies hungry for books, that is). Titles can also be a big hint as to what genre the book is, particularly when it comes to fantasy novels because the titles of these books tend to follow a pretty regular trend. If you think of some fantasy books you’re familiar with, you might even be able to predict a few of these trends.
1. Names of Magical Objects or Places
You’ll probably immediately think of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter for this one, but it extends far beyond that well-known fantasy. Some examples of titles with magical objects are: The Amber Spyglass and The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman, The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis, and The Diamond Throneby David Eddings.Buy it from Amazon
2. Name of Character, Setting, Event, or Object
This is a more common trend in Children’s and YA Fantasy. Some examples of these titles are: Harry Potter and the Philospher’s Stone (and several other titles of the Harry Potter series) by J.K. Rowling, Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce, Alice in Wonderlandby Lewis Carroll, and Sabrielby Garth Nix.
3. The Family of Important People
These titles tell readers that the character is defined by who the are related to. Examples of this trend are: The Magicians Nephew by C.S. Lewis,Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card, Red-Headed Stepchild by Jaye Wells, and The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger.Buy it from Amazon
Many fantasies include members of a royal family, and naming this type of lineage is another common titling trend. You can see this in titles like: The Princess Bride by William Goldman, The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson, Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis, and Arrows of the Queen by Mercedes Lackey.Buy it from Amazon
5. Magical Abilities and Careers
Of course, protagonists in fantasy novels usually have some sort of special power or magical position, and plenty of titles focus on this. Some examples are: Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb, The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, The Gunslinger by Stephen King, and Warbreakerby Brandon Sanderson.Buy it from Amazon