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Questions tagged [identification-request]

Questions asking for identification of a literary work (story, novel, poem, play, etc) 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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11 votes
1 answer
1k views

Goosebumps-esque story about a group of kids visiting an alternate black and white world

I remember reading a story when I was young (so 1990's) about a group of kids, possibly middle school or high-school age, that end up traveling to an alternate reality that's in black in white. I ...
2 votes
0 answers
49 views

Looking for children's book with gimmicky pages from the '70s

I remember reading a children's book from perhaps 1969 that featured a bunch of gimmicks among the pages. There may have been some pages with holes cut in them, or folded pages, things like that--but ...
1 vote
1 answer
89 views

Looking for an Aliens novel (not graphic) in which Newt and Hicks (an android) are dating

I vividly remember Newt and Hicks dating and Ripley(?) Not being happy with this as Hicks was an android. I suspect there was plenty of alien killing too, but remember nothing of what happened. I read ...
6 votes
1 answer
95 views

Looking for a book where a young girl finds and hides a baby dragon, and the girl's guardian is possessed by a henchman

A long time ago I read a book I can now barely remember. The story involved a baby dragon that gets sent from a fantasy world into the real world and gets found by the main character. In the mc's ...
6 votes
1 answer
166 views

Cortázar story that ends with a meeting on a bridge

I am trying to recall the name of a Cortázar story. It concludes with the protagonist meeting or walking past (or through) someone on a bridge. Perhaps they exchange identities as they pass each other....
0 votes
0 answers
69 views

Looking for a book from between 1974 1977 Had it as a child.Various stories remember one about a wedding cake.It was a paperback had feeling playschol [closed]

Paper back book various stories.think it was white cover one story was about a wedding cake.sure it was between 1974 1977
5 votes
1 answer
269 views

Audio versions of fairy tales, distinctive "Long ago and far away ..." intro

As a child, I had a collection of cassette tapes with audio versions of some retold fairy tales. I don't remember any of the particular stories, although I imagine they were classics like Snow White ...
2 votes
0 answers
42 views

Fantasy juvenile book from 1970s where one girl finds another hiding in the wall

I am trying to find a book read in the 1970s - early 1980s. Not sure when it was written. There were 2 girls, one named Amanda and one named Miranda (not the one by Scott Peck). I think the one girl ...
5 votes
1 answer
460 views

Crime novel with gay policeman as main character

Ages ago I read a detective novel which I remember very little about, and the few things I do remember are not very helpful for googling it. Maybe somebody here can help me with it. One thing I ...
4 votes
1 answer
72 views

Children's book about boy who dies and then wakes up in other childrens' bodies

This was a children's book, or maybe for young teens. I found it in 2014 but it looked older so maybe it was written in the early 2000s or even later. It was about a boy who falls off a cliff and ...
3 votes
1 answer
66 views

Looking for a book about a South American father and son who travel to Paris and visit a family with the same name?

From what I remember: The father and son travel, and wherever they go the father looks for a family with the same name as theirs in the phone book and contacts them. I'm fairly certain they travel to ...
10 votes
1 answer
256 views

Short story where an older lady realizes that her new beau has been murdering his wives, but decides to go with it

I was reading the TV Tropes entry for The Bluebeard and it made me recall a short story (probably less than 20 pages) I read probably in the early 2000s, I think part of a mystery anthology. The ...
1 vote
0 answers
34 views

Find a story about a man waking up alone in the world told by narrator on Youtube [closed]

I recall vividly watching a series of youtube videos about a man waking up in a world with no people. I cannot find any reference to it through google or ai chatbots or youtube search It was told by ...
2 votes
0 answers
42 views

Looking for O. Henry short story about poor young man in New York, robs a bank to live indulgently before his suicide

I cannot remember the title, but the scenes are very vivid: a poor young man finds employment at a bank (in New York? It is Winter...). Every evening he passes the lit windows of restaurants filled ...
4 votes
1 answer
109 views

Locating the "Yan-king-fu" text, allegedly dating to 764

Within the Encyclopedia Iranica some French research papers are cited that allude to a Chinese source text by "Yan-king-fu". The relevance is that the days of the week were written in ...
5 votes
1 answer
161 views

British 1990s/2000s crime novel featuring twin gangsters

I am trying to recall a British crime thriller I read in the late 1990s/early 2000s. It was set in the 1960s and featured twin gangsters very obviously based on the real-life Kray twins, with some of ...
3 votes
0 answers
44 views

Short story - Protagonist is a young boy whose parents traveled in Africa. He had leprosy (now cured) and is socially awkward

The story was one of an anthology I read in the 1990s, I think, from a book discarded by the local community college. I remember several of the books were by T. Coraghessan Boyle (must have had a ...
1 vote
0 answers
48 views

Late 90s/early 2000s where a Chile (or Chilli) solved mysteries

In a book series I read as a teen (late 90s/early 2000s) the main character's name was Chile, or Chilli. He and his friends solved mysteries.
3 votes
0 answers
92 views

Which critic asserted that English was best when it went against its Germanic roots and followed French habits?

I remember there was a critic, I believe a famous one, who argued that English writing (any writing, but especially literary) was better when it eschewed Germanic habit and followed French/Latin ...
6 votes
0 answers
142 views

Short story about African missionary couple losing his mind, making mud statue

My mom remembers reading a short story published in a college anthology at least before 1980, she thinks it was her father's so maybe published 30's or 40's. It was about a missionary couple to Africa ...
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Book about a boy blinded by a firecracker

I read this book when I was in elementary school in Ashland, KY, probably between 1990 and 1998. It was a paperback, with the cover primarily blue, maybe with the main character on the front in dark ...
2 votes
1 answer
94 views

What is a work of Russian literature, in which a gentleman gets lost in a rain with a coachman, who for a long time did not admit that he was lost?

This work dates back to the 19th century. Perhaps it was not rain, but a snowstorm. Excluded works with similar plots: “Dead Souls” by N.V. Gogol, “Blizzard” by A.S. Pushkin, “Blizzard” by L.N. ...
4 votes
1 answer
187 views

In search of: The Lexicon of Exekias/Ezekias

I caught part of a TV segment that was featuring classical sources, the narrator mentioned one text he referred to as "The Lexicon of Exekias" I jotted it down, thinking it would be easy to ...
3 votes
0 answers
41 views

Book about parallel universes, but tv connects them?

I’ve been searching for this book for years, but I’ve never been able to find it because I only remember random bits and pieces of it. I’ll try to list the things I think I remember. As stated in the ...
6 votes
0 answers
83 views

Short children's story about an android who thinks they're human who creates an android

The Tomato Surprise TV Tropes entry describes a story about an android who thinks they're human who creates an android. In a short story in a children's book, the protagonist is a young prodigy ...
13 votes
1 answer
952 views

Identify a story about the kid who waves at the train

I learned of a story in my high school time (sometime during the years 2000-2002) as part of the English textbook. The story is about two men having a conversation in a train, one is a disabled man ...
4 votes
0 answers
61 views

Book about a guy who claimed to only ever bowl perfect games

I'm looking for a book I remember reading as a child, about 15 years ago. The basic premise is a person who gets a job at a bowling alley, and becomes friends with the owner, who claims to have only ...
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Trying to find a story of a man who strapped a magnet to his forehead, has visions

Many years ago I read a story of a man who experimented with a magnet strapped to his forehead. From what I remember, he examined this experiment in his attic study. He harnessed a magnet on his ...
4 votes
0 answers
46 views

Book involving Route 66 with a girl breaking her grandma's friends out of a retirement home

I read a book around 2006 to 2008 and I believe it was considered new at the time. I remember it being called Route 66 with a red convertible on the cover headed towards the open road but whenever I'...
8 votes
1 answer
221 views

identify a Douglas Adams-ish short story about a failed attempt to communicate with aliens that ends with an anticlimactic sentence

When I was a teenager I read a story about scientists who received radio signals (or something like that) of extra-terrestrial origin but were unable to decode them. After many years of receiving ...
3 votes
1 answer
74 views

SF Book about Extreme Socialist Society with penalties for gifted people [duplicate]

I read this store some 10+ years ago. I am pretty confident that it was a short story. I have been through my collection a few times but I haven't been able to find it. It has sentences such as ...
5 votes
1 answer
168 views

20th century poem ending with "-baby?"

In high school I rented a collection of poems from a male author that I believe had a black-and-white cover with a photograph on it. I got it from a USA library in 2012. I am looking for one poem in ...
1 vote
1 answer
76 views

Book from a Spanish academic researcher on the history of paper (or of books)

I am looking for a book from a Spanish academic researcher on the history of paper (or of books). I remember it had a plant on the cover.
2 votes
0 answers
77 views

YA literature where a group of older kids are suggested to be synthesizing LSD in the school chemistry lab, but are actually making wood alcohol

Memories of reading this recently started teasing around the edges of my memory and I'm trying to pin it down. The protagonists are a set of kids (I think mixed gender, possibly primarily Caucasian) ...
5 votes
1 answer
131 views

Creatures eat everything and wreck the house?

There’s a children’s book with a boy whose home is overrun with hungry beings. Can’t remember if they’re little dragons or gnomes or ogres, but they ransack the place while eating every food scrap ...
5 votes
1 answer
548 views

A book about a kid who has a magic baseball glove

I'm looking for a story that matches this description: A kid had a magic glove that could catch anything. He traded it away so that he could make a tunnel under his baseball field, to prevent a road ...
5 votes
1 answer
63 views

Looking for a book with a boy who finds an object that calls to him and gives him an ability

I don’t remember much about the book’s plot except that it’s basically about a boy who goes into a store with a lot of objects and finds one that calls to him. The object gives him some sort of ...
3 votes
0 answers
40 views

Looking for a book with the story of a little boy who rode a train and was found later dead

So I remember my mom reading this book full of many short stories and this one has stuck with me the most. A boy and his friends decide to do this thing where they hop on a train and ride for awhile ...
2 votes
1 answer
65 views

Novel about a man trying to solve the long ago disappearance of his younger brother

I was reading the entry for Raincoat of Horror and it suddenly made me remember a book I read in the last year or two, around 2022-2023, I think as an ebook from the library. I'm going to look through ...
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

Novella about man reminiscing about his girlfriend/wife while standing by her dead body

I read a novella about 10 years ago, which I thought was written by Dostoevsky, but I haven't been able to find it since. Plot: A middle-aged man stands near the body of his girlfriend (or wife) who ...
3 votes
0 answers
69 views

Poem about the coffee rings left behind on a table

This poem was published in a quarterly poetry magazine in the mid-'90s. It was about the coffee rings left behind on a table in a cafe. The coffee stains were compared to the memories of our lifetime. ...
5 votes
1 answer
536 views

What was the name of this story referring to 17-year cicadas?

Several decades ago, I read a short story where a woman sees 17-year cicadas emerging. This leads her to recall several vignettes from her life, from the previous times she encountered 17-year cicadas ...
22 votes
2 answers
7k views

Scene from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy where Arthur fails to explain how Earth technology works

I remember a scene from one of the Hitchhiker books: Arthur Dent (I guess) talks to an alien who says that the Earth was this very backwards planet. Arthur says, well, this is not true, we had plenty ...
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Fantasy book with character that used ing instead of swearing, all the time

There was this - i think fantasy - book that had a character who used a literal "ing" instead of any swearing. I mean all the time, every second or third phrase. Might have been one of ...
16 votes
1 answer
324 views

"The Dearest Charms in France" - French story about soldiers, a lottery, and a famous prostitute

Several years ago, I read a memorable short story included as an example (of what, I don't recall) in a book about writing. The story was set in a historical era of France. I believe it was ...
9 votes
0 answers
291 views

Canadian NRI aunty shares her living experience with her niece and nephews

I remember reading this story in my Indian primary school curriculum and it had some impact on my thinking. It's about an NRI aunt coming to India to visit her niece and nephews while they are ...
2 votes
0 answers
78 views

Short Story About A Newspaper Carrier Whose Newspapers Get Wet Due To Rain - Printed in an Early 1970s 8th Grade English Literature Textbook

I am searching for the title of a short story that is about a newspaper carrier who is a male child that is approximately the age of 10 to 16. In the short story, the newspaper carrier is delivering ...
6 votes
0 answers
75 views

Science fiction story in which African dictator is overthrown by his son

This story was written 1984 or earlier, I believe. It was part of the sociological science fiction trend and really had nothing science fiction-like in it other than being set in some unspecified ...
2 votes
0 answers
55 views

Book about female character who can see in the past

Read this when I was very young, so I don't remember it too well. But it was about a young woman who met a guy and was being introduced into his family, however she could see back in time through some ...
2 votes
1 answer
97 views

A YA book about surviving outdoors

I’m looking for a YA novel- I would have read it in the 90s. It was about a boy that lived in the wild and how he survived and took care of himself. I remember a specific part where he hunts deer. ...

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