Can't Remember The Title Or Author Of A Cherished Book? Maybe This Website Can Help...

News, Books

via io9

Ever read a book--when you're a kid, say--and years later, despite fond memories of the story, you can't remember the original author or title? 

Then check out What was that book?

It's a LiveJournal forum, where people post the details they can remember about a book, and users try to help them figure out the origin. 

Here's one, from user mindtrall

Doubt this was ever a hard back or bestseller. My recollection is that I got it in the early to mid-70s. I recall that it had something to do with a priestly group of "extrapolators" who could manipulate all sorts of things with their minds.  In fact, the single outstanding aspect of the book was the frequent use of the word extrapolate and its derivatives. Not sure of the publisher, but it may have been Ace.

Anyone know it? Go over and let him know. Ever find yourself seeking a forgotten book? Tell us in the comments. 

Rob Hart

News by Rob Hart

Rob Hart is the class director at LitReactor, as well as the associate publisher for He's the author of The Last Safe Place: A Zombie Novella, and his short stories have appeared in publications like Shotgun Honey, ThuglitCrime Factory, and Needle: A Magazine of Noir. His debut novel, New Yorked, will be published by Polis Books in June 2015. He lives in New York City, and you can find his website at

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Richard's picture
Richard from St. Louis is reading The Doll Collection, edited by Ellen Datlow June 21, 2012 - 8:14pm

that's pretty cool.

Strange Photon's picture
Strange Photon from Fort Wayne, IN is reading The inner Citadel June 22, 2012 - 8:51am

My fiancee has tried, to now avail mind you, using that forum to find a particular book holding a particular short story she's raved over for years. She's been on her search since we've been together (7 years) and still has yet to find the title of the story or the collection it is in.

It's a story about a girl who is raped and killed by her rapist (NO - it isn't The Lovely Bones) and the girl then comes back and haunts her rapist. She drives him mad by making him rape other women just as he had done her, and eventually she drives him to suicide.

If anyone can give me the title of the story, or of the collection it resides in, I shall look like the greatest future husband EVER, and you will get cookies. Lots and lots of cookies... Think about it, cookies pouring out broken windows like the popcorn scene in Real Genius. You know you want that many cookies.

twinkletoes3106's picture
twinkletoes3106 from Phoenix, AZ is reading The Electric Michelangelo by Sarah Hall June 22, 2012 - 12:38pm

There was a young adult trilogy that I read when I was kid that I have been trying to find for years, books that I picked up in a used bookstore, so I'm not sure how old they were, but I would guess late 80's/early 90's. I remember that it involved a group of high schoolers who got caught up in a world of magic runes and one particular villain with white-blond hair who was trying to get the main character to fall in love with him by transporting her to these dreamlike realms of fantasy. I remember the villain being one of those characters you wanted to both kiss and kill, and it was the first time I read the word "laconic", an adjective the author loved to use in reference to him. I remember there was also a Spyder car involved in one of the books, too; strange detail, I know, but hey, it's what I remember. Pretty sure the villain made the main character believe her friends were dying in reality to try to bait her to give him what he wanted (maybe it was to go with him into this fantasy world - I can't quite remember). I have done so many internet searches and can NEVER find it, but it's such a vivid part of my childhood. Ringing bells for anyone?  

Joshua Chaplinsky's picture
Joshua Chaplinsky from New York is reading The Southern Reach Trilogy June 22, 2012 - 12:49pm

@Strange: Why would a girl who was raped make her rapist rape more women as punishment? Sounds like she is helping him achieve his nefarious goals.

Utah's picture
Utah from Fort Worth, TX is reading Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry June 25, 2012 - 8:45am

@Strange:  I did a quick Google search for that story.  I did not find it.  But I did find a ghost forum which featured a thread in which a woman claimed to have been raped by the ghost of her grandfather.  There were many there willing to offer her sage advice on how to prevent a future ghost-rape, and many others who offered sympathy.

This is the kind of shit I'm willing to go through for you guys.

Rejoyce Thandi Meintjies's picture
Rejoyce Thandi ... November 26, 2012 - 12:17pm

looking for a book that I read between 2005-2008, don't remember the title or author but the main character of the book was poor and lived with her mother and siblings and her father is quite wealthy but wants nothing to do with her. her brother becomes a soldier and sometime during the book she gets raped by a soldier and a guy finally falls inlove with her and marries her despite her past

k.l.e.v's picture
k.l.e.v January 1, 2013 - 3:20pm

I've been trying to look for this book for ages! The last time I read it was 5 years ago.
The cover of the book has a mental hospital in the background and it's tinted light green. The title is a bold red color and it is just one word. I think it began with either the letter T, I, L ???
The plot (from what I can remember) involves a teenage girl that is harassed in a mental hospital. Before going to this hospital she had a brother who also went there because his parents  decided to send him there when they found out his was a homosexual. I think the brother was also harassed by the same staff member in the hospital as the one who harassed his sister. When the sister gets admitted she is stripped by the staff. In the end she escapes the hospital with a boy she falls for and goes to her grandmothers house. 
This is one of my favorite books, but I can't remember its title or author! 

Chanceler's picture
Chanceler February 20, 2013 - 12:26am


I have been trying to find a book that I read the summer before my grandma passed away about 10 years ago. I lent her the book and she donated it to a book store in Mexico and I just want to get a copy for sentimental reasons. I can't remember the author or the title of the book but I think I can recall most of the plot.

The main character is a woman who finds out her boyfriend cheats on her with her best friend who may be named Chrissy, she finds out the same day that she is informed her Mother has died. She moves away from the city and lives in her mothers house for a while, getting to know her mother's occasional lover. The lover is supposedly a retired detective who works with a writer or is the writer who works with a detective, he is also supposedly married but its all a cover story as they are all three actually criminals and also the lover of her mother actually killed her. This comes to light near the end of the book.. The main character ends up pulling her life back together and taking a job producing a new up and coming travel guide show. She workd closly with an male actor who is the star of the show and her new love interest. She is hesitant about starting a relationship with this male because he's a notorious womanizer. But in reality he leaks false intel the the reporters to take attention away from his child (possibly a daughter) who has special needs. I think they eventually fall in love, and probably it ends happily. I think she discovers that her mother was murdered, who did it and might have has her life threatened at one point in the story. The title of the travel show may or may not be something like "There and Beyond" or something to that variation. That is all the details that I can remember hopefully most of it is accurate but if anyone has an idea what book this is I will be so grateful!! 


Carol-Anne Dallas M'Lyn Baverstock's picture
Carol-Anne Dall... from Surrey, UK April 3, 2013 - 10:28am

Hi there - new here and hope someone can help.


I had a book in my teens - approx mid-late 80's.  It was a teenage fiction book about a young female hairdresser who lives with her Mum and works at a local salon but wants to leave the humdrum of little old ladies and shampoo and sets.


She goes to London and gets a job in a very chic salon


That's all I remember and would desperately like to get that book again.


Please help if you can


Thanks, Carol

bbirley's picture
bbirley May 22, 2013 - 3:22pm

I remember reading a book when I was in highschool in the 80s that I would really like to find for my students. I think it was called Hello My Name is David and I'm an Alcoholic or something like that. It is about a boy who has a drinking problem. I read it about the same time I found Go Ask Alice. If anyone has any idea what the book is called, who wrote it or where I could find it I would be estatic!


Jason Trainor's picture
Jason Trainor September 16, 2013 - 9:01pm

I read a book several years ago, but dont remember the title. I do know it was fiction, paper back book. About a family settlers, that radio and also has president hoover in it.


Nerak's picture
Nerak November 14, 2013 - 5:16am

I dont remeber the Author but the name of the book ia 'I remember Love' i read this book 7 years ago the main characters were Jocelyn and Yolanda. Please please please help me find this book, there is a modern version which i do not like at all.

enmarchany's picture
enmarchany from New Jersey is reading The Hunger Games: Catching Fire November 14, 2013 - 7:44pm

I'm looking for a romance novel, but I cannot remember the title. It's a lady who rescue her co-worker from a fire, they become friends, then she ask him to help her father a child no strings attached.

vukduq's picture
vukduq November 22, 2013 - 10:14pm

seeking a thriller / action type paperback in which the main author is a hitman in Europe. He uses as a weapon a belgium handgun in a fairly unknown caliber.

I seem to remember that the name of the book is HitMan or similar name.

Appreciate info on this as I would like to read it again.

vukduq's picture
vukduq November 22, 2013 - 10:15pm

I believe that the book was published within the last 8 yearrs or less.

مينا محبوب's picture
مينا محبوب November 24, 2013 - 12:49pm

Ok so i've been looking for this book a couple years now, it's about some girl who has this weird think stalk her. its starts off with her standing at the window at night looking out and admiring it i think. outside her window there's something/someone watching her, in the creepy manner, i think she at one point she see's something and it scares her a bit.

so at one point of the book she gets kidnapped or something and wakes up in a forest, i think she's naked, i think she feels as though she's been raped and touched and kidnapped but on one believes her. there are marks on her body but it doesn't point to anyone. the person who'd been watching her at the window is basically the one who'd kidnapped her.

she later on befriends a guy who tries to help her, i think he knows what this thing is after her, cause it's not a human, i think it's some kind of creature or vampire, not sure. so i remember the girl and the guy becoming friends and they're driving one night when that thing thats been stalking her runs out in front of them and they crash. she survives but her friend dies. as she's lying unconscious her and her friend are surrounded by a group of these weird things and the one that's been stalking her scares the rest of them off.

the last thing i remember about the book is the girl becomes really good friends with the guys grandmother. this is all i remember. hope someone can help me please.............

j.czinder's picture
j.czinder December 8, 2013 - 4:20am

Dear Whomever reads this,
 I'm looking for a book, It was my all time favorite as a child. I remember neither the Author or Title. I remember the story and the cover. I'm searching for A children's Picture Book. The Story is of A young blonde girl In elementry school, She LOVES the Color Blue, Has to have Blue everything, blue hats, dresses, funiture, and only eats Blue foods. If I do remember the Girl turns blue from having everything blue. She learns a lesson that things should come in Moderation.
Please Help! Its making me crazy looking for it.

with much Thanks and Hope,

Asa Moore's picture
Asa Moore December 16, 2013 - 12:28pm

Read a book in middle school (2002-2004), not sure how old the book was/is. Here's what I can remember: the title had something to do with "below the ice"/"under the ice"/something with ice. The main character was a normal guy who ends up trying to take a shortcut across a frozen lake. He falls through the ice and right when he thinks he's about to drown, he's laying on a warm beach. He travels around completely lost until he gets taken to the main capital. There he in introduced to 3 other characters, one of them happens to be... a centaur I believe? It is explained to all of them that each of the characters are from 4 of 5 different "planes." The female is from a plane where mental power is heightened to the point of being telekinetic, the other male is from a plane where physical strength is dominate, the centaur (possibly a satyr?), is from the magical plane, and the main character is from the "normal" plane. They are told that they have been chosen to undergo a quest to defeat a man who is trying to take over the plane they are all currently visiting, a mix of all planes, the crossroads. They go on the quest, each doing their part, I remember that the strongman gets hurt really bad. The centaurs musical instrument is like a storage/copy machine, where he plays a song, his target is held magically in the instrument, and if he wants to he can make copies of it (though he can't "copy" people, one of the main things he copies is moss, for fire). Anyway, the other three continue on and eventually get buff dude fixed up. Close to the end of the quest they all have to travel through some kind of terrain in which each individual is scared to death of. The main character is scared of falling through ice. The female is scared of tunnels/caves due to being hurried alive/crushed. Can't remember the other two. The last part of the book that I remember, is that the main bad guy takes away each characters sense of right and wrong, and each character asks to join baddies army. Except the main character. He somehow is able to manipulate his lack of right and wrong to instill fear in the baddie, and flip the situation around. Good guys win. Bad guy loses. Yay.... can anyone help?

Joshua Chaplinsky's picture
Joshua Chaplinsky from New York is reading The Southern Reach Trilogy December 16, 2013 - 1:09pm

To all those posting there requests here: have you tried the website profiled in this article?

Joann Prata's picture
Joann Prata January 15, 2014 - 3:20pm

I read a book in the published early to mid 1990s.  It was about a rich family and their summer home near the beach I think it was in New Orleans  A woman was invited to spend the summer there and she came by steamboat.   It probably took place in the late 1800s or early 1900s.  I only read a small portion of the book and would love to read it now.


kato1964's picture
kato1964 from Canada is reading Crossing The Line: The Derek Sanderson Story (autobio) February 23, 2014 - 2:00am

I'm really hoping someone can help me out with this one. I read this book many years ago, when I was in high school, either the late 70s or early 80s. I am not sure when it was written, but that is when I read it, so it may have been written in the mid to late 70s. I believe the author was John Castle (not the guy who wrote "Smokeless" but the English author who penned "Flight Into Danger" (aka "Runway Zero Eight") with Arthur Hailey). However my every effort to Google it has failed, so perhaps my memory is playing tricks on me. Regardless, the basic story line is about an old man (in his late 90s) reminiscing about his life as a pilot in the UK, pre WW1, during WW1, in between WW1 & WW2, and then as time goes on and WW2 begins, the story focuses more on his children. Pre WW1 he is hired to teach a female journalist to fly in her attempt to become the first woman to fly across the English Channel. However she is an atrocious pilot, and as he has fallen in love with her he chooses to crash the plane he is delivering to her for her flight, rather than have her risk her life in what he is sure will turn out to be a doomed attempt. As it turns out she had chosen the date that the Titanic sank as her flight date, so had she made the flight it would have gone all but unnoticed, even had it been successful. The story then jumps to WW1, where he is a training pilot in the RAF. He is engaged to a beautiful young woman, who is the brother of a fellow pilot. He also becomes friends with a hero fighter pilot who has been transferred to the training Sqn, rather than the POWERS THAT BE risk having their hero die in battle. He eventually runs into the female journalist from the pre-war years, which again ignites his passion for her. However he is still engaged to his friend's sister, and is torn as to what to do. He eventually ends up with the journalist, but not before "deflowering" his friend's sister, causing scandal and shame for the young woman and her family. Also the hero fighter pilot ironically dies in a training accident as well. The story then jumps to the "between years" (between WW1 & 2) and he is an airline pilot, involved in what is perhaps the first case of skyjacking. Eventually the story moves ahead to WW2, and as I said, the story begins to focus more on his children, as he and the lady jounalist have now been husband and wife for many years, and their children are grown. The daughter, who is married, begins an affair with this American pilot, whilst her husband is a POW. Her parents frown on this, particularly our primary protagonist, but his wife points out they became a couple under similar circumstances, which he concedes, but still doesn't condone his daughter's actions. Meanwhile the American pilot is convinced he is a doomed man, as when he first saw the English airfield he was stationed at he had a premonition that he would die there. As the story unfolds you realize that his premonition was 100% accurate, but not in the way that you expect. I would love to get another copy of this book, and re-read, although it would seem I have a fairly clear recollection of the entire plot. That is how much of an impression it made upon me as a teen. (unfortunately not enough to have retained the title or the author's name in my brain full of UFI...) Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!

beepy's picture
beepy March 10, 2014 - 9:59am

years ago i read a lesbian book about a group of women who met up in a cabin to go ski-ing. One arrived a day late and shared an attic bedroom with a supposedly straight woman. They fell in love looking through the stars through their window. One bought the other a necklace showing the stars they had viewed. They went home to wait 3 months to make sure their love was true. After telling their fathers they met again. Happy ending. 

Angie Praeger's picture
Angie Praeger April 16, 2014 - 12:28pm

I am trying to find a book I read anywhere from 10-15 years ago. I remember something about a boy going into a strange/scary house perhaps even in another world/dimension. He is coming of age and I remember he ends up having sex with the main girl character who is also 14-16 years old. I think she dies at the end or there is some reason they don't get together. I believe the cover was a white outling of a house against an all black background or perhaps a white scraggly tree against an all black background. I want to say it was called something like "Shadow" or "Dark Shadow (s). I just can't remember... any help is greatly appreciated.

sweetfem's picture
sweetfem April 18, 2014 - 2:01pm

what is the book called where she follows letters from grandma to go many places

Norma Donaldson's picture
Norma Donaldson May 30, 2014 - 6:17pm

im looking for the title of a book my sister was reading when she died in 1997 the cover was a woman in a green dress stand away from a castle ( i think) my mother says it a woman tied to a bed with  something like a gold chain. From what my sister told me about the book the woman in the story is chained to the end of a bed and the man refuses to release her and the womans mother brings her food and things and trys to talk some sense into her. I thougth it was johanna lindseys prisioner of my desire but its not it sort of like it. im not sure what year it was wrote i just know it was not a harliquin she didnt read those. any help is great  Thnks


Ranjini Ravishankar's picture
Ranjini Ravishankar September 2, 2014 - 3:06pm

The book I'm looking for is for teens. The story is set in the future. It's about a girl who codes cheats for clients. These clients are for people who enter a game at the end of which is a giant reward I think the end of the game was called The Roots.They often die in the game which means they die in real life. You have to enter a cubicle kind of thing to start playing. So there is a guy who shows up, dark haired and skinny,and enters the game( her love interest if I remember right). He gets extra health and fights monsters, turned invisible on the map for a while etc. Anyway, final level was where he meets with his father and fights him but he had infinite health I think. There was some final clever thing he did and won. Another thing I remember is a client that showed up before, a beautiful woman that took the protagonist in the middle of the night to a scenic place with a great view od the night sky. She died (in the game I think) which was why the main girl wanted her cheat code to work so much and made for that guy.
Some more things I remember- the main girl used to be a top cheat-coder but lost her fame. She was taken in by a bunch of other coders, one of whom never talked. They were in hiding (from the govt.(?) ). One day an explosion occurred and a body flew out of a building and crashed onto the ground. They took the person in, but there were arguments about this decision (since they were in hiding).
Any help is appreciated! Thanks.

danrees's picture
danrees October 7, 2014 - 7:34pm

Hey I remember reading a book but can't remember the name, it starts in a school with a group of friends after they graduate they get set to a certain faction type place and get food stamps and basically have to survive by sticking together, then every now and again they get a letter or something telling them to meet at a certain place where they get out in a chamber and when they wake up there in a dessert and this keeps happening until they realize there stuck on this other planet for good and that it was all a test in order to teraform another planet. Thanks for your help!!

baruch50's picture
baruch50 November 16, 2014 - 8:38pm

I read a book for young adults, probably older teens, when I was in my early twenties, over twenty years ago, and for the life of me, I cannot remember the name of the book. The story, at least as far as I can remember, was about people who no longer lived on earth, but in space or space camps. A group of teenagers, who were in school for space flight or maybe combat training, decided to take the ship on a joyride. They ended up landing on a planet where only one lady lived. If memory serves me, it had something to do with a tower. Anyhow, I think that there were strange animals or creatures that lived there too and I also think that the lady turned out to be the mother of ano of the kids on the flight. That is all I can remember about the book but I would, for nostalgia's sake, read it again. If anyone knows what book it is, I would really appreciate a message. Thanks for any help that you can give!

HarryPotterx09's picture
HarryPotterx09 January 25, 2015 - 12:37am

Hi! I can't remember this book that I read in 5th grade but I'm dying to remember what it was. The only things that I can remeber about this book is that this kid slips his name into a slot box for a mysterious job. A man appears at his door and tells him that he has won. He then has to keep Earth in balance along with other people. The main object is to keep time from standing still. It's like a mystical investigation. Please help!! thank you