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10 Titling Trends In Fantasy

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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.

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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.

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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.

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4. Royalty

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.

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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.

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