Questions tagged [identification-request]

Questions asking for identification of a story, book, or author, based on descriptive details provided within the question. Please be thorough and provide ALL of the details that you can remember when using this tag. (For questions seeking the original source of a known quote, use the [quote-source] tag instead.)

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2
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0answers
58 views

Short story where aliens provide choice of escape from Earth to all species. All leave except for dogs, which remain with behind with humans

Short story where aliens provide a choice of escape from Earth to all the species. All leave except for dogs, which remain with behind with humans.
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1answer
657 views

Ogden Nash poem on hiccups

I have a vivid memory of reading a poem by Ogden Nash about hiccups that included the word "epiglottis" to help explain why they happen. I think it also had, as a poem, his quote about how &...
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30 views

Young Adult mystery where they interview a former slave

I remember as a kid (probably late '70s) reading a mystery where the protagonists, probably 2+ boys, but I don't recall, interviewed the remaining residents of an old plantation for clues. One of ...
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47 views

NY short stories - woman wears towel for landlord, woman tricks rich man to take her to Napa, priest falls into elevator shaft while wrestling a drunk

A woman who won't pay the rent. When the landlord comes to the door and tries to talk to her, she stands with only a very short towel in front of her. Eventually she has to move and does this all ...
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1answer
64 views

Which book had a character read 1001 Arabian Nights for extra credit?

I remember my school teacher reading to us a book where part of the story was that the main character wants to get extra credit at school for reading a very long book. So he (?) goes to the library ...
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1answer
80 views

Which adaptation of Richard II the John of Gaunt's speech played in Tom Hiddleston's Jaguar Commercial at the beginning comes from?

Starring Tom Hiddleston, at the beginning of this Jaguar advertisement: Art Of Villainy With Tom Hiddleston - Jaguar Ad, a recording of John of Gaunt's speech (This royal throne of kings, this scepter’...
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1answer
325 views

Book featuring John Dee's assistant and a Hungarian vampire lady

I read this short novel around 2014, in the UK, in English. The cover was dark pink or red, and the title was something that smelled like a ripoff of the Da Vinci Code. One of the main (viewpoint) ...
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37 views

Wife kills husband short story, NOT "Lamb to the Slaughter", where the wife giggles at the thought of killing him

I'm looking for the title of a short story, NOT "Lamb to the Slaughter," but another one I used to compare and contrast with it. It had a wife and husband, very much in 1950s roles, talking ...
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50 views

Fairy tale about a Princess who turns into a monster at night

I'm searching for a fairy tale, or a fairy tale retelling, that I've read in English. The story is about a Princess who turns into a monster or a beast at night and so is locked away. If a man can ...
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41 views

Sci-fi story where humans first help alien life advance and then lead factions to war against each other

I've been trying to find a story I've read about 20 years ago, without success. It is about a group of human astronauts landing on an alien planet, where they help the local life advance ...
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130 views

Looking for the name of a book with Bruegel's Tower of Babel as the front cover

I'm looking for the name of a book I read three years ago (although it was published in the early 2000s maybe) about a boy who leaves his village and goes to a large city. The cover art is a corner of ...
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42 views

Book about a boy who leaves his village and goes to a large city. The cover shows two men having a discussion at the foot of Bruegel's Tower of Babel [duplicate]

I'm looking for the name of a book I read three years ago (although it was published in the early 2000s maybe) about a boy who leaves his village and goes to a large city. The cover art is a corner of ...
3
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0answers
41 views

Who wrote/recorded this Chinese parable about a deer trained not to fear wolves?

It was a Chinese writer or philosopher, probably pre-1900. Basically, a man captures a deer and a wolf and keeps them in his garden/compound. He trains the wolf not to attack the deer. The deer ...
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1answer
79 views

Young adult 80s novel about second coming of Christ as a horny teenage boy

I read this book in the late 1980s or possibly very early 1990s. It was about the second coming of Christ but extremely blasphemous in its plot line (as far as I recall, Christ had come back as a very ...
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51 views

Greek/Roman play in which a woman encourages a pregnant slave to marry a slave owner and pass her baby off as his?

I can’t for the life of me remember which play this is, or indeed whether it’s Greek or Roman. There’s presumably a lot more to the plot than this, but all I remember is that a young woman is sold ...
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1answer
131 views

Short animal stories book identification

I remember reading a book about 20 years ago, containing lots of short stories (each one being only a couple of pages long). The stories were not connected to each other at all. Each story have a ...
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42 views

Hindi short story where a painter makes a painting of his dying son

I read a Hindi short stories book around at least 8-10 years ago. One of the stories I still remember (some of it), as I found it very strange/disturbing. I remember some of it, but want to read the ...
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0answers
38 views

Looking for a short poem which is a parodic pastiche of Shakespeare plots (possibly published in the New Yorker)

A few years ago, in a poetry podcast, the guest read out a poem which was a parodic pastiche of Shakespeare plots. It wasn't based on any specific Shakespeare plot, but it was meant to seem like a ...
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68 views

Trying to find a story called "The Curse of the Phantom Rolls Royce"

As a child (at 12 or 13, ~55 years ago) I read a story called "The Curse of the Phantom Rolls Royce" and I loved it. It wasn’t a big book so I think it was a stand alone story. I certainly ...
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1answer
69 views

Trilogy of book involving a man's journey through ritual magic [duplicate]

This is going to bug me... I was reading A book from the 80s/90s with a stage magician and a couple women and it reminded me of a trilogy of books I read in the late 1990s as discarded paperbacks from ...
6
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1answer
209 views

90s retelling of Twelfth Night set in Internet chatrooms

I'm looking for a book I read in the late 1990s that actually was the inspiration for the username I still use today. It was based on the plot of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, with people falling in ...
3
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1answer
70 views

A book from the 80s/90s with a stage magician and a couple women

I'm sorry but my memory is quite spotty on this but I'm obsessed with trying to remember this book. I don't remember the author or title at all. I barely remember a few things. the main character was ...
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1answer
43 views

Thriller novel where the main character escapes an underground complex explosion by running up the stairs really fast

I don't remember exactly when I read this, I think at least ten years ago, almost certainly more than five years ago. I don't remember what was being investigated in the story, but the protagonist is ...
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1answer
50 views

Short story about a wealthy man bringing his new wife to his childhood home, from when he was poor, which is in the mountains/wilderness

I'm looking for a short story that I think I listened to as an audiobook, in a collection with other stories, in the early 2000s, checked out from a library in Ashland, KY. I was reminded of this when ...
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1answer
79 views

Stone age fiction with "summers" instead of "years"

The series is fiction, and has multiple books. The cover I had of the third book has fire and an animal along with the protagonist, I think. The protagonist is a person so it cancels out any books ...
4
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1answer
437 views

Short story about secret spy betrayed at a secret party, boss got stuck in trap while looking for files

I think I read it five or six years ago from a collection of novels written by one writer. A man is a spy in a secret illegal organization, one day he took part in a secret party, but he had been ...
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0answers
80 views

Looking for a phantasmagoric novel encountered many years ago

Following advice by Rand al'Thor I am reposting here my old question, asked and closed six years ago at the SciFi & Fantasy SE site. Now this is going to be really tough since I remember very ...
7
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1answer
110 views

Fantasy series where magic is connected to astronomical objects

I am looking for a series. It may be 5 books, but I am not totally sure on that. I read the book roughly 15 years ago and believe it was somewhat new at that time. The story itself is wrapped around a ...
3
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0answers
42 views

Original Poems from Notes from the City of the Sun

I am interested in finding the original Chinese poems used in Notes from the City of the Sun by Bonnie S. McDougall. I know the poems are from Bei Dao, and, according to this webpage, the poems used ...
3
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0answers
31 views

Book about a boy and girl who are great baseball players

I have pretty limited information about this book, but here goes: I read it approximately 6-7 years ago. The language of publication was English. I found it while browsing in a book store where it ...
9
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1answer
180 views

Everyone keeps diaries due to regular, town-wide amnesia

I would have read this English YA novel in the late 2010s, though I'm not sure how old it was at that point. It was picked up from a local library in the Western United States. I am 50% sure there was ...
4
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0answers
92 views

Audiobook about 19th century New York immigrant obsessed with photography and a red-headed woman

Back in the early 1990's my father got an audiobook from the library about a German or European immigrant in 19th century New York (I think it mentioned the main male protagonist seeing the Statue of ...
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0answers
24 views

1960s? Young race car driver series (Young Adult)

In the late 60s or early 70s I read a series of books (3 at least) about a young race car driver (probably 18-20 in the first book). They were hardback books from a library, so could be 5-10 years ...
12
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1answer
929 views

A detective story about money printing

I probably read this 3-5 years ago. It is a story about a man that wants to reveal a money printing factory, he does it because his brother died (I guess) while trying to reveal that money printing. I ...
4
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1answer
34 views

Small hardback with illustrations about an inventive boy and the houses he makes for his friends

I read this one as a child, in the mid 1980s, in a book about the dimensions of a coffee table book, but only about 20-30 pages long. The main character is a young boy, with two parents and at least ...
3
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0answers
50 views

Native American story about a mailman

Almost a decade ago I borrowed a book from my school library, which held the tale of a young Native American (if I remember correctly) boy who wanted to become the fastest one from his village, for ...
14
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1answer
954 views

Short story about a detective and criminal who disguise themselves and interact while in pursuit

I read a short story around 1996 in the US. I think it was part of a 5th grade reader book (kind of a compilation of short stories at the appropriate reading level). I remember thinking the story was ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Which story referenced the parable of Custer’s last stand?

I’m trying to figure out where I first came across this “parable of Little Big Horn”. I think (but I’m not 100% sure) that this was a story told by a narrator at the beginning of a novel. The gist of ...
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0answers
102 views

Who wrote, and what is the name of, this famous essay on criticism?

Written between 1400 AD and 1900, the long prose essay--a translation into English from Latin or French--has a terse title, something like "On Criticism" or "On the Art of Criticism&...
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0answers
46 views

Book that tracked the life of two objects over centuries

Many years ago I read a rather interesting book that tracked the life of two physical objects (a whip and a crown perhaps) over several centuries. The book was given to me as a child by my father, who ...
2
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0answers
41 views

Looking for the source of a quote about women "giving birth in the field" and then "extracting the afterbirth with their big toe"

I know this is sort of vague, but the details seem esoteric enough to potentially be findable, and I'm having no luck finding it myself. This was either from a piece of fiction, or from an ...
3
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0answers
39 views

Looking for an elegy poem about a flower the narrator cared for (at the cost of enjoying life), which died and left him devastated

I'm looking for an elegy-style poem in which the narrator recounts ignoring the beautiful flowers around them, instead attending to a single flower that had yet to bloom. They thought this one flower ...
3
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1answer
94 views

What's the title of the short story about wife accidentally eating all of her husband's food so she cooked "something" instead?

I am not actually sure if this is a story I have watched, or read, or both. Certainly I have watched it as I have pictures on my mind. Anyway, the plot is: The wife is (I guess) abused by her husband. ...
3
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1answer
62 views

Short British horror story about a selective, helmet-like memory eraser

I am trying to identify a short story originally published in the 1970s in a British horror anthology. It concerns the invention of a selective memory eraser, and the story concludes with everyone in ...
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0answers
41 views

Boy fooled a newspaper-boy to tell the other villagers of a marriage

I was once solving a test passage on Khan Academy last year. It contained a story of a boy who fooled a newspaper-boy to tell all the other residents of a village that a man was marrying a woman. It ...
4
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0answers
52 views

Mad Magazine comic strip about the philosopher Aristotle being a "damn foreigner"

After the unexpected success I had with my previous identification question regarding a Mad cartoon by Dave Berg, I feel emboldened to ask another. I remember very few details, but it's something like ...
3
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0answers
52 views

Looking for a children's book about a boy who drifts to a mysterious island on an inflatable tube after being washed out to sea

The story based in Britain is, as far as I can remember, about a boy who falls asleep on an inflatable tube at sea while on a family holiday to the beach. He then drifts to a mysterious island whose ...
13
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2answers
3k views

What literary work is being referred to in this limerick in which "The earth, like an orange, is blue"?

In the blog post Famous Poems Rewritten as Limericks on LanguageHat.com (2 April 2018), a certain Trond Engen posted the following limerick: The earth, like an orange, is blue. Your love and your ...
20
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4answers
4k views

In what Chinese fairy tale does a painter disappear into his own painting?

The online description of Rüdiger Safranski's book Wieviel Wahrheit braucht der Mensch? begins with the following sentence: In einem berühmten chinesischen Märchen verschwindet der Maler in seinem ...
5
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1answer
83 views

Mad Magazine comic strip about a boy pondering over existence (and "I think, therefore I am")

I'm trying to find a comic strip that originally appeared in Mad and was reprinted in a paperback collection of material from that magazine. I read it in the paperback collection. The strip shows a ...

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