Top Ten Tuesday

Queen of Darkness, Shadows, Storm AND Blood — Frequently Used Words in Fantasy Titles {Top Ten Tuesday}

180424 Frequently Used Words in Fantasy Titles

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Welcome to a new Top Ten Tuesday!

Let’s be honest: fantasy titles are not always super creative or innovative. It’s why there are so many random fantasy title generators available. Does it mean I love them any less? Heck no. But, it is fun to see how many books titles you can get with the same words. I didn’t even have to look far for this. I just opened my media library, typed in a commonly used fantasy word and *poof* I have so many books already available.

Here are my picks for five of the most frequently used words in fantasy:

<< Royalty >>

We really do love royalty, don’t we? Kings and queens, princes and princesses, they are everywhere. And I’m not gonna lie, I love me some books about royalty, so chances are if a title has one of these words in them, I’m very likely to pick them up. Case in point:

clockwork-prince-by-cassandra-clare Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. King falling-kingdoms-by-morgan-rhodes

The Iron King by Julie Kagawa   The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen    To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare the-queen-of-blood-by-sarah-beth-durst

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo daughter-of-the-pirate-king-by-tricia-levenseller The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine

<< Dark >>

Add a touch of menace to your book title, and make it sound a lot more… well… dark.

Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes Chase The Dark by Annette Marie Dark Tempest by Annette Marie

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson And I Darken by Kiersten White

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare

<< Blood >>

Just like ‘dark’, nothing adds menace to a book title as much as a little bit of ‘blood’. Seriously, what is up with the word ‘blood’ in titles? None of these are even vampire books…

The Blood Curse by Annette Marie frostblood-by-elly-blake blood-rose-rebellion-by-rosalyn-eves

anna-dressed-in-blood-by-kendare-blake  The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

<< Shadow >>

Shadows are great. They are almost always around, they protect you from the sun AND they look great in a book title.

Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones The Shadow Weave by Annette Marie Reap The Shadows by Annette Marie

Cloaked in Shadow by Ben Alderson  Shadows on the Moon by Zoë Marriott  lord-of-shadows-by-cassandra-clare

a-gathering-of-shadows-by-v-e-schwab A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

<< Storm >>

If all else fails, use the word ‘storm’ to predict that a lot is going to go down in this book. You have been prepared.

Unleash the Storm by Annette Marie War Storm by Victoria Aveyard Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas

Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo Crystal Storm by Morgan Rhodes

Do you have any other examples of book titles with these frequently used words? what’s your favorite?


  1. Great list – and way to present this week’s topic, Lindsey. Seeing everyone else’s list makes me wish I’d chosen ten words vs. one word and ten books. But, oh well! There’s always next time. 🙂

  2. Ooh nice topic. I like royalty too but who knew it was used SO much? And lol about “dark” and “blood”- that kinda makes you wonder ha ha! And I do like “storm” in a title, I must admit!

  3. Great list, Lindsey! I often find something getting all these new YA fantasy books confused because the titles are so similar!

  4. I’ve seen a lot of these around today but not too many “storms.” Great job! I enjoyed seeing you lists!

  5. Okay, this is sort of hilarious in it’s own way. And yet…you’re right. No matter how many times I see the word Prince or Queen in a title, I AM going to pick it up and give it a look through 😉 I guess publishers know what their audience likes, even if we like to poke fun at it sometimes.

  6. Excellent list. And as a lover of fantasy novels, I totally agree. You see these words way too often.

    Here is our Top Ten Tuesday. Thanks!

  7. Haha yes, royalty is way overused. But it interests me immediately to read about a queen or kingdom! The stakes seem so much higher when it’s an entire country, I guess. Great list!

  8. There is a TON of royalty for sure!!! Happy reading 🙂

  9. I chose fantasy for this week, too. I get fantasy titles confused all the time because a lot of them are similar.

  10. I love this weeks prompt cause you can really see what kind of books people like.
    On a side note I am so damn excited about War Storm!

  11. It really is amazing how many books use the same words. No wonder I always get fantasy titles mixed up, lol. And so many of them use more than one of these in the same title too!

  12. Perfect list and I am loving all these covers. I admit, I do tend to check out anything with dark in the title. LOL

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