List of book titles taken from literature

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Many authors will use quotations from literature as the title for their works. This may be done as a conscious allusion to the themes of the older work or simply because the phrase seems memorable. The following is a partial list of book titles taken from literature. It does not include phrases altered for parody. (Titles taken from works by William Shakespeare do not appear here: see List of titles of works based on Shakespearean phrases.)

Work Author Literary Reference
Absalom, Absalom! William Faulkner 2 Samuel 19:4
A che punto è la notte
(literally, "At which point is the night")
Carlo Fruttero and Franco Lucentini Isaiah 21:11
After Many a Summer Dies the Swan Aldous Huxley Tithonus, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Ah, Wilderness! Eugene O'Neill Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, trans. Edward FitzGerald
Alien Corn (play) Sidney Howard Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats
The Alien Corn (short story) W. Somerset Maugham Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats
All Passion Spent Vita Sackville-West Samson Agonistes, John Milton
All the King's Men Robert Penn Warren Humpty Dumpty
Alone on a Wide, Wide Sea Michael Morpurgo The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
An Acceptable Time Madeleine L'Engle Psalms 66:13
Antic Hay Aldous Huxley Edward II, Christopher Marlowe
An Evil Cradling Brian Keenan Qur'an 13:18, Arthur John Arberry translation
Arms and the Man George Bernard Shaw The Aeneid, Virgil
As I Lay Dying William Faulkner The Odyssey, Homer
A Time to Kill John Grisham Ecclesiastes 3:3
Behold the Man Michael Moorcock John 19:5
Beneath the Bleeding Val McDermid East Coker, T. S. Eliot
Beyond the Mexique Bay Aldous Huxley Bermudas, Andrew Marvell
Blithe Spirit Noël Coward To a Skylark, Percy Bysshe Shelley
Blood's a Rover James Ellroy Reveille, A.E. Housman
Blue Remembered Earth Alastair Reynolds A Shropshire Lad, Poem XL, A.E. Housman
Blue Remembered Hills Rosemary Sutcliff A Shropshire Lad, Poem XL, A.E. Housman
Bonjour Tristesse Françoise Sagan À Peine Défigurée, Paul Éluard
Brandy of the Damned Colin Wilson Man and Superman, George Bernard Shaw
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee Dee Brown American Names, Stephen Vincent Benét
Butter In a Lordly Dish Agatha Christie Judges 5:25
By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept Elizabeth Smart Psalms 137:1
Cabbages and Kings O. Henry The Walrus and the Carpenter, Lewis Carroll
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons Carrion Comfort, Gerard Manley Hopkins
A Catskill Eagle Robert B. Parker Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
The Children of Men P. D. James Psalm 90:3
Clouds of Witness Dorothy L. Sayers Hebrews 12:1
A Confederacy of Dunces John Kennedy Toole Thoughts on Various Subjects, Moral and Diverting, Jonathan Swift
Consider Phlebas Iain M. Banks The Waste Land, T. S. Eliot
Consider the Lilies Iain Crichton Smith Matthew 6:28
Cover Her Face P. D. James The Duchess of Malfi, John Webster
The Cricket on the Hearth Charles Dickens Il Penseroso, John Milton
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Mark Haddon Silver Blaze, Arthur Conan Doyle
The Daffodil Sky H. E. Bates Maud, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Dance Dance Dance Haruki Murakami Death's Echo, W.H. Auden
A Darkling Plain Philip Reeve Dover Beach, Matthew Arnold
Death Be Not Proud John Gunther Holy Sonnets X, John Donne
The Doors of Perception Aldous Huxley The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, William Blake
Down to a Sunless Sea David Graham Kubla Khan, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Dulce et Decorum Est Wilfred Owen Odes iii 2.13, Horace
Dying of the Light George R. R. Martin Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
East of Eden John Steinbeck Genesis 4:16
Ego Dominus Tuus William Butler Yeats La Vita Nuova, Dante
Endless Night Agatha Christie Auguries of Innocence, William Blake
Everything is Illuminated Jonathan Safran Foer The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera
Eyeless in Gaza Aldous Huxley Samson Agonistes, John Milton
Fair Stood the Wind for France H. E. Bates Ballad of Agincourt, Michael Drayton
Fame Is the Spur Howard Spring Lycidas, John Milton
A Fanatic Heart Edna O'Brien Remorse for Intemperate Speech, William Butler Yeats
The Far-Distant Oxus Katharine Hull and Pamela Whitlock Sohrab and Rustum, Matthew Arnold
A Farewell to Arms Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms (To Queen Elizabeth), George Peele
Far From the Madding Crowd Thomas Hardy Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard, Thomas Gray
Fear and Trembling Søren Kierkegaard Philippians 2:12
For a Breath I Tarry Roger Zelazny A Shropshire Lad, A. E. Housman
For Whom the Bell Tolls Ernest Hemingway Meditation XVII, John Donne
Frequent Hearses Edmund Crispin Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady, Alexander Pope
From Here to Eternity James Jones Gentlemen-Rankers, Rudyard Kipling
A Glass of Blessings Barbara Pym The Pulley, George Herbert
The Glory and the Dream William Manchester William Wordsworth, Ode: Intimations of Immortality
The Golden Apples of the Sun Ray Bradbury The Song of the Wandering Angus, W. B. Yeats
The Golden Bowl Henry James Ecclesiastes 12:6
Gone with the Wind Margaret Mitchell Non sum qualis eram bonae sub regno Cynarae, Ernest Dowson
The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck The Battle Hymn of the Republic, Julia Ward Howe
Great Work of Time John Crowley Horatian Ode upon Cromwell's Return from Ireland, Andrew Marvell
The Green Bay Tree Louis Bromfield Psalms 37:35
A Handful of Dust Evelyn Waugh The Waste Land, T. S. Eliot
Have His Carcase Dorothy L. Sayers The Iliad, Homer (William Cowper's translation)
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter Carson McCullers The Lonely Hunter, William Sharp
The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things JT LeRoy Jeremiah 17:9
His Dark Materials Philip Pullman Paradise Lost, John Milton
The House of Mirth Edith Wharton Ecclesiastes 7:4
How Sleep the Brave H. E. Bates How Sleep the Brave, William Collins
How Sleep the Brave James H. Hunter How Sleep the Brave, William Collins
How Sleep the Brave John Briley How Sleep the Brave, William Collins
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Maya Angelou Sympathy, Paul Laurence Dunbar
I Sing the Body Electric Ray Bradbury Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman
I Will Fear No Evil Robert A. Heinlein Psalms 23:4
If I Forget Thee Jerusalem William Faulkner Psalms 137:5
If Not Now, When? Primo Levi Pirkei Avot 1:13
In a Dry Season Peter Robinson Gerontion, by T. S. Eliot
In a Glass Darkly Sheridan Le Fanu I Corinthians 13:12
In Death Ground David Weber & Steve White The Art of War, Sun Tzu
In Dubious Battle John Steinbeck Paradise Lost, John Milton
An Instant in the Wind André Brink The Broken Tower, Hart Crane
It's a Battlefield Graham Greene The Invasion of the Crimea, Vol. 6, Alexander William Kinglake
Jacob Have I Loved Katherine Paterson Romans 9:13
O Jerusalem! Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins Psalms 137:5
Jesting Pilate Aldous Huxley Of Truth, Francis Bacon
The Last Enemy Richard Hillary I Corinthians 15:26
The Last Temptation Val McDermid Murder in the Cathedral, T. S. Eliot
The Lathe of Heaven Ursula K. Le Guin Zhuangzi, Book XXIII, paragraph 7
Let Us Now Praise Famous Men James Agee Ecclesiasticus 44:1
Lilies of the Field William Edmund Barrett Matthew 6:28
This Lime Tree Bower Conor McPherson This Lime-Tree Bower My Prison, Samuel Taylor Coleridge
The Line of Beauty Alan Hollinghurst The Analysis of Beauty, William Hogarth
The Little Foxes Lillian Hellman Song of Songs 2:15
Little Hands Clapping Dan Rhodes The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Robert Browning
Look Homeward, Angel Thomas Wolfe Lycidas, John Milton
Look to Windward Iain M. Banks The Waste Land, T. S. Eliot
The Man Within Graham Greene Religio Medici, Thomas Browne
Many Waters Madeleine L'Engle Song of Songs 8:7
A Many-Splendoured Thing Han Suyin The Kingdom of God, Francis Thompson
The Mermaids Singing Val McDermid The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, T. S. Eliot
The Millstone Margaret Drabble Matthew 18:6
The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side Agatha Christie The Lady of Shalott, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Moab Is My Washpot Stephen Fry Psalms 60:8
The Monkey's Raincoat Robert Crais The Monkey's Raincoat, Matsuo Bashō
A Monstrous Regiment of Women Laurie R. King The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women, John Knox
The Moon by Night Madeleine L'Engle Psalms 121:6
Mother Night Kurt Vonnegut Faust Part One, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The Moving Finger Agatha Christie Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, trans. Edward FitzGerald
The Moving Toyshop Edmund Crispin The Rape of the Lock, Alexander Pope
Mr Standfast John Buchan Pilgrim's Progress, John Bunyan
Nectar in a Sieve Kamala Markandaya Work Without Hope, Samuel Coleridge
The Needle's Eye Margaret Drabble Matthew 19:24
Nine Coaches Waiting Mary Stewart The Revenger's Tragedy, Cyril Tourneur
No Country for Old Men Cormac McCarthy Sailing to Byzantium, William Butler Yeats
No Highway Nevil Shute The Wanderer, John Masefield
Noli Me Tangere José Rizal John 20:17
No Longer at Ease Chinua Achebe The Journey of the Magi, T. S. Eliot
Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal H. E. Bates Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Number the Stars Lois Lowry Psalms 147:4
Of Human Bondage W. Somerset Maugham Ethics, Baruch Spinoza
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck To a Mouse, Robert Burns
Oh! To be in England H. E. Bates Home Thoughts From Abroad, Robert Browning
The Other Side of Silence André Brink Middlemarch, George Eliot
The Painted Veil W. Somerset Maugham Lift Not The Painted Veil Which Those Who Live, sonnet by Percy Bysshe Shelley
Pale Kings and Princes Robert B. Parker La Belle Dame sans Merci, John Keats
The Parliament of Man Paul Kennedy Locksley Hall, Alfred Lord Tennyson
Paths of Glory Humphrey Cobb Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard, Thomas Gray
A Passage to India E. M. Forster Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman
O Pioneers! Willa Cather Pioneers! O Pioneers!, Walt Whitman
Postern of Fate Agatha Christie Gates of Damascus, James Elroy Flecker
Precious Bane Mary Webb Paradise Lost, John Milton
The Proper Study Isaac Asimov An Essay on Man, Alexander Pope
Quo Vadis Henryk Sienkiewicz John 13:36 (Vulgate translation)
Recalled to Life Reginald Hill A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
Recalled to Life Robert Silverberg A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
Ring of Bright Water Gavin Maxwell The Marriage of Psyche, Kathleen Raine
The Road Less Traveled M. Scott Peck The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
A Scanner Darkly Philip K. Dick I Corinthians 13:12
Shall not Perish William Faulkner Gettysburg Address, Abraham Lincoln
The Skull Beneath the Skin P. D. James Whispers of Immortality, T. S. Eliot
The Soldier's Art Anthony Powell Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came, Robert Browning
Some Buried Caesar Rex Stout Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, trans. Edward FitzGerald
Specimen Days Michael Cunningham Walt Whitman's prosework
The Stars' Tennis Balls Stephen Fry The Duchess of Malfi, John Webster
Stranger in a Strange Land Robert A. Heinlein Exodus 2:22
Such, Such Were the Joys George Orwell The Echoing Green, William Blake
A Summer Bird-Cage Margaret Drabble The White Devil, John Webster
The Sun Also Rises Ernest Hemingway Ecclesiastes 1:5
Surprised by Joy C. S. Lewis Surprised by Joy, William Wordsworth
A Swiftly Tilting Planet Madeleine L'Engle Morning Song of Senlin, Conrad Aiken
Taming a Sea Horse Robert B. Parker My Last Duchess, Robert Browning
Tender Is the Night F. Scott Fitzgerald Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats
Terrible Swift Sword Bruce Catton The Battle Hymn of the Republic, Julia Ward Howe
That Good Night NJ Crisp Do not go gentle into that good night, Dylan Thomas
That Hideous Strength C. S. Lewis Ane Dialog, David Lyndsay
Things Fall Apart Chinua Achebe The Second Coming, William Butler Yeats
This Side of Paradise F. Scott Fitzgerald Tiare Tahiti, Rupert Brooke
Those Barren Leaves Aldous Huxley The Tables Turned, William Wordsworth
Thrones, Dominations Dorothy L. Sayers Paradise Lost, John Milton
Tiger! Tiger! - alternative title of The Stars My Destination Alfred Bester The Tyger, William Blake
Tiger! Tiger! Rudyard Kipling short story The Tyger, William Blake
A Time of Gifts Patrick Leigh Fermor Twelfth night, Louis MacNeice
Time of our Darkness Stephen Gray For the Fallen, Laurence Binyon
Time To Murder And Create Lawrence Block The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, T. S. Eliot
Tirra Lirra by the River Jessica Anderson The Lady of Shalott, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
To a God Unknown John Steinbeck Rig Veda Book X
To Sail Beyond the Sunset Robert A. Heinlein Ulysses, Alfred, Lord Tennyson
To Say Nothing of the Dog Connie Willis Three Men in a Boat, Jerome K. Jerome
To Your Scattered Bodies Go Philip José Farmer Holy Sonnets VIII, John Donne
The Torment of Others Val McDermid The Dry Salvages, T. S. Eliot
Unweaving the Rainbow Richard Dawkins Lamia, John Keats
Vanity Fair William Makepeace Thackeray The Pilgrim's Progress, John Bunyan
Vile Bodies Evelyn Waugh Philippians 3:21
The Violent Bear It Away Flannery O'Connor Matthew 11:12 (Douay translation)
Waiting for the Barbarians J.M. Coetzee Waiting for the Barbarians, Constantine P. Cavafy
The Waste Land T. S. Eliot From Ritual to Romance, Jessie L. Weston
The Way of All Flesh Samuel Butler Joshua 23:14 (as rephrased in Wesley's Notes)
The Way Through the Woods Colin Dexter The Way Through the Woods, Rudyard Kipling
The Wealth of Nations Adam Smith Isaiah 61:6
What's Become of Waring Anthony Powell Waring from Dramatic Lyrics, Robert Browning
When the Green Woods Laugh H. E. Bates Songs of Innocence and of Experience, William Blake
Where Angels Fear to Tread E. M. Forster Essay on Criticism, Alexander Pope
The Widening Gyre Robert B. Parker The Second Coming, William Butler Yeats
Wildfire at Midnight Mary Stewart The Revenger's Tragedy, Cyril Tourneur
The Wind's Twelve Quarters Ursula Le Guin A Shropshire Lad, A.E. Housman
The Wings of the Dove Henry James Psalms 55:6
The Wives of Bath Susan Swan The Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale, Geoffrey Chaucer
The World, the Flesh and the Devil Mary Elizabeth Braddon Book of Common Prayer
The Yellow Meads of Asphodel H. E. Bates Ode on St. Cecilia's Day, Alexander Pope