Top Ten Tuesday: Book Titles That Are Complete Sentences

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. For the rules see her blog. The topic this week is Book Titles That Are Complete Sentences.

These are all books I’ve read.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr – about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Come Tell Me How You Live by Agatha Christie – a memoir about what life was like when she accompanied her husband Max Malloran on his excavations in Syria and Iraq in the 1930s.

Death Comes as the End by Agatha Christie – a detective story set in on the West bank of the Nile at Thebes in about 2000 BC. 

Death Comes to Pemberley by P D James, a sequel to Pride and Prejudice set in 1803, when Elizabeth and Darcy have been married for six years. 

Did You See Melody? by Sophie Hannah – Melody was seven when she disappeared and although her body had not been discovered her parents were tried and found guilty of murdering her. What really happened to her?

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey – Maud has dementia – but she knows her friend Elizabeth is missing. I enjoyed the TV adaption with Glenda Jackson as Maud much more than the book.

Jacob’s End is on the Landing by Susan Hill – describing the books she read, reread, or returned to the shelves over the course of a year, as well as her thoughts on a whole variety of topics. It’s fascinating, rambling and chatty.

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré – a story of love and betrayal at the height of the Cold War. Back from Berlin where he had seen his last agent killed whilst trying to cross the Berlin Wall, Leamas is apparently no longer useful. 

They Came to Baghdad by Agatha Christie – set in 1950 this is a story about international espionage and conspiracy. The heads of the ‘great powers‘ are secretly meeting in Baghdad.

 When Will There Be Good News? by Kate Atkinson. The 3rd Jackson Brodie book – in a quiet corner of rural Devon, a six-year-old girl witnesses an appalling crime. Thirty years later the man convicted of the crime is released from prison.

18 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Book Titles That Are Complete Sentences

  1. This is a tough assignment this week with so many titles almost sentences but not quite, like ‘All the Light We Cannot See’ is missing the predicate. If the words were rearranged it might work: “We Cannot See All the Light.” I really struggled this week. Argh. TTT Sentences

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    1. I could have chosen another title – ‘Elephants Can Remember’ by Agatha Christie was my first choice, but I like ‘All the Light We Cannot See’. ‘We Cannot See All the Light’ changes the meaning. And I’d forgotten everything I once knew about the predicate.

      I wrote about the title in my post on the book, thinking it could refer to the how the brain, which is enclosed within the scull – ie in darkness – is yet full of light, brimming with colour and movement. And also to the light transmitted by radio wavelengths; light caught from the sun within plants and within gem stones such a diamonds; light beyond our ability to see it within the electromagnetic spectrum.

      I like the title more than the book! 🙂


  2. That is tough! Even now when longer book titles seem to be gaining traction. Strictly speaking, The Spy Who Came In from the Cold isn’t a full sentence (if they’d dropped the Who, it would have been). I can only think of is: And Then There Were None (which, as we all know is not the original title), Are You There, God? It’s Me Margaret and The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.

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  3. Very clever, Margaret! I never thought about book titles that are complete sentences, but they’re out there. Hmm….now you’ve got my brain buzzing; I ought to think of a few of my own….

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  4. I found When Will There Be Good News? to be so depressing, it put me off reading her for a while.


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