The other week I talked about consistency in series book covers, but what I didn’t mention in that post was book titles. And just like I love when covers are matchy and consistent, I love when titles are matchy and consistent too! I would never avoid or dislike a series just for having titles that don’t relate, and in most cases it doesn’t truly bother me, but it makes me extra happy when the titles DO match. So let’s talk about it!
Why Consistent Book Titles in a Series are a Good Thing
Most of the same reasons as why covers consistency is a good thing—it’s good branding (making the series recognizable) and it just has a nice feel to it. This is probably not as important as consistent covers, but some books are so uniquely and consistently named that you would know just upon hearing a new title what series it belonged to, even without seeing the cover or author, which is a good thing. It also makes the titles easier to remember, at least for me, as long as they each relate to their book in some way. (It gets confusing though if they’re all just kind of random, abstract words.)
How to Make Book Titles in a Series Consistent + Examples
– The number of words. Some series have one-word or two-word titles. But they also need to be the same figure of speech or type of word or it’s not really consistent, in my opinion. For example, if the first book title is a noun, they should all be nouns. It actually does bother me when the title of the first book in a series is a noun, the second book title is an adjective, the third is a verb, etc. SJ Pajonas especially nailed the one-word title since each word even starts and ends with the same two letters. (Titles: Removed, Released, Reunited, Reclaimed, Revealed.)
– The format/setup. Like, [Verb] the [Noun]. Or, A [Noun] of [Noun] and [Noun]. Or, [Adjective] [Noun]. Or, [So-and-So] and the [Something]. The Thieves series is an especially great example, I think, because the titles of each book also relates to the stories, making it easier to remember which title goes with which book. (For example, Steal the Light is about them stealing an artifact called “the Light of Alhorra,” Steal the Moon revolves around a werewolf gathering, etc.) (Titles: Steal the Light, Steal the Day, Steal the Moon, Steal the Sun, Steal the Night.)
– A common theme. Titles don’t need to sound the same in order to be consistent if they revolve around the same theme. The Ink series titles are a good example of this because they’re all different, but they’re all related to comic books since the MC is a comic artist. Also I already had a graphic for these from my last post, haha. (Although, sadly, this series might be getting a makeover with new titles and covers soon, according to the author.) (Titles: Sketches, Fine Lines, Vanishing Point, Abstraction, Darken.)
This probably seems nitpicky, and authors can do whatever they want with their books, but I like what I like, and I like when titles in a series match!