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BookBub's mystery category word cloud

BookBub’s mystery category word cloud

BookBub's historical romance word cloud

BookBub’s historical romance word cloud

BookBub, an ebook promotion services company, published a blog post about words that are trending in book titles. Using data from the last six months, BookBub analyzed 3,850 books from multiple fiction categories to see which words turn up most frequently in titles and then turned their results into word clouds.

Which word was used the most often? Love. Love appeared in the titles of religious and romance novels, but also horror, historical fiction, women’s fiction, and mysteries. Pious turned up in the titles of action-adventure novels, but not religious. (Religious, however, had Couponing. How inspirational is that?)

Murder and Death were huge for the mystery category, as you might guess, but some mysteries also used Dumpty (but not Humpty, as far as I could tell). Thriller titles used Justice, Blood, Black, and Blue the most (I guess there’s a lot of bruising going on in thrillers). War was the word used most often in historical fiction titles, and Destiny and Deadly—but also River—in action-adventure. Zombie and Dead turned up most frequently in horror titles, but historical fiction by a huge margin went with Bride. Historical fiction titles also used Sourdough and Bushwhacked. (I don’t know about you, but I’ve always wanted to use “Bushwhacked” in a title. Or anywhere.)

Contemporary romance titles included the words Audubon and Shopper. Children’s books went with Amazing, Treasure, and Princess. Religious books used the word Heaven most often in their titles (and let’s not forget Couponing).

Women’s fiction went big with food words: Ate, Pickled, Chocolate, Coffee, Shelled, Shucked, Fried, and my favorite, Geoducks.

Lots of words in book titles seem to be possessives. Everybody’s got one — God and the Devil, as well as normal people: Anne, Darcy, Doctor, Else, Gasparilla, Horatio, Jacob, Nefertiti, and Nobody. Tough guys get their time on the cover—Assassin, Hunter, Monster, Pirate, Rogue, Shooter, Warrior—as well as royalty: Emperor, King, Knight, Duke, and Lady. Abstracts that own things: Heaven and Freedom. Places that own things: Chicago and a Kingdom. Things that fly that own things: Bird and Fairy.

I couldn’t resist: I made up a few titles of my own using trending words. Ready?

The Assassin’s Princess Treasure (action-adventure)

Darcy’s Zombie Love Bride (historical romance)

Couponing on the Dumpty River (women’s fiction)

Deadly Destiny: Bushwhacked Justice (thriller)

Nobody’s Sourdough War (historical fiction)

Life just doesn’t get any better than those trending words—as long as you’re not bushwhacked.

Reading between the holidays


The week between Christmas and New Year’s has always been one of my favorites: the big gift-dinner-family time is over, time slows down, and it really feels like a holiday. I got a Kindle from my mom this year, who does not get technology and has trouble even with her cable TV remote. She says she can’t figure out a computer and she doesn’t need a smartphone, but she’s happy with her microwave. She might be tech challenged, but Mom gets that ereaders–like hardcovers and paperbacks–are one more way to deliver books, and she knows I’ve always really loved to read. So she got me a Kindle.

I added a few books to read on the plane: two (Wish List and Vegas Moon) by John Locke, who’s made it big in the self-published ebook world. His books are fast and furious mystery-suspense type stories full of cheeky dialogue. And then I got Far from the Madding Crowd, written in 1874 by Thomas Hardy, not exactly who I’d call a light read.

However, Laura thinks Far… is ripe for a romantic comedy redo because the story is about a woman and her three romantic interests. As it turns out, by 1967 Hollywood decided that Hardy and Far… were indeed ready for a contemporary treatment, so they got Julie Christie to play in the film adaptation along with Terence Stamp, Alan Bates, and Peter Finch as the suitors. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but catch the cover for the DVD! Thomas Hardy: I hardly knew ye.