Talk:Lists of books

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Older discussion[edit]

I'm keen to make this real, although it seems hard to identify all the books without category tags. Anyway, the sorting order should ignore the little initial words like "A" and "The", otherwise T and A sublists are going to be extra-long. :-) Stan 00:43 19 Jul 2003 (UTC)

After noticing how people search for titles in a library catalog, I believe it's best to provide more than one link to the same book. When a book becomes so well known by its exact title (or by a shorter version of the title) people don't think about the words grammatically, and don't realize that they can/must drop the 'a', 'an' and 'the' at the beginning of the title. I would encourage listing a title such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn three times: under 't', and under 'a', and under 'h'. GUllman 22:21 19 Jul 2003 (UTC)

P.S. Following the format of List of people by name, if the list of one letter becomes too long, we start lists with the first two letters. If the list of titles starting with 'The' becomes too long, we start lists that start with 'The A', 'The B', etc. GUllman 22:21 19 Jul 2003 (UTC)

After thinking about it, I've decided to follow the example set in List of movies. Titles that begin with 'A', 'An' and 'The' will be alphabetized according to the second word in the title (except foreign titles like Les Miserables will still be listed twice: under 'L' and under 'M'). ... But I still think that books that are well known under more than title (such as Huckleberry Finn) should be given entries under each of those possible titles. GUllman 20:20 22 Jul 2003 (UTC)

What exactly is the point of this entry?[edit]

Well, the section heading says it all really. It's unclear to the person (like me) who stumbles across this page what is being aimed at. Surely not a list of every book ever published? Not only is it difficult to see why that would be appropriate for an encyclopaedia, but it would be an impossible task (and the list is far shorter than a genuine attempt at universaility would indicate). Yet it's not a listing of every book for which there's a Wikipedia article (because many of the books listed don't have articles), nor of every book referred to in a Wikipedia article (many are missing). In fact, going through the list, there's no apparent criterion for inclusion; it could be a list of somebody's bookshelves.

So I'm genuinely puzzled. What exactly is the point of this entry? If there is one, could it be explained on the index page? Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 17:49, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC)

It's just like all the other open-ended lists on Wikipedia like 'List of people', 'List of sports' or 'List of Star Wars characters'. It IS intended to be a list of all books that have Wikipedia articles; whenever someone wrote an article about a book, they should have placed a link here; if someone wrote an article about a person, they should have included a link on 'List of people'. But most people didn't, leaving only a few people to try to maintain the list. And now, there is also a category system of books by title to keep up with. At least one of these is needed to give users an overview of what is available on Wikipedia, and to give editors ideas for articles that are still needed. GUllman 23:39, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Thanks; as I random about the place, I'll keep an eye open for book articles not on the list, and add them where necessary. I still wonder, though, if a short explanation couldn't be placed on the index page, if only for casual and easily perplexed visitors. I can do that it you'd like (based on your explanation to me). Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 23:47, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

List of lists[edit]

I hope extending the list so considerably will add to rather than detract from its usefulness. The main lists are still at the top. I don't see the advantage in having the list numbered, so I'm going to replace the numbers with bullets. Robina Fox 18:55, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

I love this page![edit]

What a great idea. Now I know this page is here, I will use it again. It's such a quick way to get an idea of whether something I'm looking for is likely to be around, and if so, where. I have a cheeky suggestion though. Lists are so useful, that having a list of lists can be even more useful. Here's the cheeky suggestion -- a list of all lists of lists. ;) Alastair Haines 19:31, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

You asked for it. Here's the list of lists, and here's the list of all lists of lists. (I gave the former its first major expansion under the title "Lists of articles by category", but the name has since changed.) GUllman 22:27, 14 May 2007 (UTC)

Selective lists[edit]

At the risk of stating the obvious, the selective lists section is for lists which are not comprehensive, either because they are already set (e.g. the Big Read) or depend on a vague or POV selection criterion (e.g. "important" or "classic"). Robina Fox 13:33, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

The only lists that I notice have POV selection criterion are List of famous books and novels, List of important children's books, and List of children's classic books. The others with a selection criterion are from calculated popularity or sales of books, or set by a well-known and authoritative person or organization. Most of the lists (such as the main list of books) have no criteria except for having a Wikipedia article; these are valuable to Wikipedia's writers and users as an overview of which articles exist and are needed. GUllman 23:14, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

The format of the list....[edit]

Take a look at List of newspapers-- (talk) 11:18, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

That is a list of templates - I can't see how it would work with this list. Robina Fox (talk) 11:37, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

How to Books on Wikipedia[edit]

Would be nice to have that too. --Ludvikus (talk) 19:32, 4 October 2009 (UTC)


i changed the lede, and was accurately corrected, but would like to propose another difference: per Lists of films, "This is a summary list of articles containing lists of books". i prefer to remove references to WP directly in articles, including ledes.Mercurywoodrose (talk) 16:42, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Concur (per WP:SELF). -- Quiddity (talk) 21:18, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Lists vs. bibliographies[edit]

This started with List of books about Oakland, California, with my question being: what is WP policy or consensus for lists, or bibliographies, that include many items not themselves shown to be notable, but which are, or can be, used as reference material for other articles, or for research in general. I see we have oodles of lists of books where each item is shown as notable, and a number of very impressive "Bibliography of XXX" articles which list lots of works that are themselves not notable. Are these two distinct types of lists? what are the inclusion criteria for works on a subject if we are not attempting to show their specific notability. I think my main concern is that for any subject, there is a huge number of books which mention the subject in passing at a minimum, and which have at best marginal notability within their field, let alone notability to justify a separate article here. I feel like allowing too many books of marginal or tangential content to fill up these lists waters them down and renders them useless. examples, both real and hypothetical: from the oakland list, it includes books NOT about the city of oakland. now that to me is just right out, as they say in the UK. other examples would be obscure pamphlets, vanity press works, or any works collected by simply using search strings at google or amazon and adding everything found. Oh, and if the "list of books about xxx" and "bibliography of xxx" are really the same thing, we should settle on a single form of name for them.Mercurywoodrose (talk) 23:15, 3 July 2011 (UTC)

  • Not everything mentioned in Wikipedia has to be notable in itself - that is a criterion for individual articles. "Bibliography of XXX" articles are usually created when a full bibliography would unacceptably lengthen the article on the author. Regarding your Oakland example, if a list of books about Oakland contains a book you know is not about Oakland, just remove it. A "list of books about XXX" has XXX as the subject matter; a bibliography of XXX is a list of books etc written by XXX - not the same thing. Robina Fox (talk) 12:52, 9 October 2013 (UTC)