How to find a book without knowing the title or author

Xiaobai Software  2022-07-22 19: 04  read 1,846 views

Do you want to find the title of a book while only remembering the plot?Online search techniques make it easy to find a book with a vague description.

Sometimes you remember a book you've read by its cover.Sometimes through the actions of an unremarkable character.However, sometimes you can't even remember the author or the title of the book.Everyone has amnesia at some point, so expect to see (or ask) questions like this one day:

"What's that book about the puppet master being a murderer?"

In the past, you could ask a librarian.Today, you can use these tips to find a book online when you don't know the title or author.


How to Find a Book with a Google Search

When you can't (or even if you can) remember a book's name, author, or characters, Google or other search engines should help you find a book.

This is true of any general search when trying to find a book without knowing the title and author.Use any details you remember from the book as keywords.


In the case of forgetting the title or author, you have to memorize whatever is available in the book.It can be a character's name, a line of dialogue, or even an important plot point -- the more specific the phrase, the better the outcome.

All the rules for a regular search apply (eg, for an exact search, put it in quotation marks).Google's auto-suggestions will also tell you if you're on the right track.

try google book search

huge Google Books SearchIt is the most extensive book cataloging project of its kind.It scans millions of books and kicks off Google Book Search, which works just like Google Search.

The difference is that the reference pages displayed in the search results also contain additional information such as various covers, tables of contents, common terms and phrases, and famous passages from the book.Also, you can view sample pages and check if this is the book you are searching for.Additionally, you can search within a book.

The number of search parameters you have at your disposal can help you find books with vague descriptions.

Use Google's advanced search page filters such as subject, publisher, language, publication date, or ISBN and ISSN numbers.Of course, you're unlikely to remember those last two.


Try using keywords and wildcards to catch clues.Even if you don't find the book you're looking for, you may have come across a reference that can lead you to the answer.

Find the best online catalog for any book

1. Book Finder


Book Finderis an advanced search engine (click for more options) that mines the inventory of over 10 booksellers worldwide.Try searching by keyword, or limit your query by the year of publication, if you can recall.

Book FinderThe advanced search field on can help you find out-of-print books or their first editions.It's also a popular site for finding the cheapest textbooks.

2. WorldCat


WorldCatis the world's largest network of library content and services.You can search the world's database of 170 libraries in 72000 countries.For example, search for a book and find it at a nearby library.Membership in this library allows you to view the item online.

Try advanced search with unique filters like audience and language.

take a peekWorldCat Genres (or Fictional Finder), which helps you browse hundreds of genres of fiction by title, author, subject, character, location, etc., ranked by popularity in libraries around the world.

3. The Library of Congress


The U.S. Library of Congress (LOC) is the largest library in the world and today houses a vast digital collection.Online book searches through its catalog of 1.67 million items -- including books, serials, manuscripts, maps, music, sound recordings, images, and electronic resources -- shouldn't take too long.

Use Amazon Search to Find Book Names

Amazon started out as an online bookstore.Books remain the largest selling category, with millions in stock at any one time.If Amazon doesn't sell the book you're looking for, it's probably gone, or your memory is blurrier than you think.

You can name a book from the basic search bar and a keyword.But the real book-finding tool is Amazon's Advanced Book Search.


Amazon doesn't have an official list of advanced search operators.But it does show some search hints on the page above. There are some brute force searches listed in the API documentation that you can try for your book.

Browse the document by clicking "Next".For example, try using the [title-start] keyword to help you name books quickly.

The trick is to navigate through the clutter of Amazon search results.Try this neat Amazon advanced search tool called, which can also help you get hidden Amazon search results.

Use Amazon's Look Inside to search book content

Amazon not only matches your keywords to book titles and authors, but to every word in the book.You can find out if this is the book you're looking for by clicking the Look Inside link and browsing the preview page.Then, use the "Search Inside This Book" field to find sentences, key phrases, and citations.

Ask the online book community for help

Any website that can help you discover your next book will have an online community.Tap into the collective memory of book lovers on these recommended book platforms.

1. Goodreads


Goodreadsis a subsidiary of Amazon.Therefore, you can expect its knowledge base to be just as large.This social network for book lovers has discussion boards on various topics.

You can go to any specific type of group for help.But it might be worth trying these two first:

1.  Book Hunting

2.  What's the Name of That Book

2. Abe Books: BookSleuth


Looking for a description of a romance novel?Or that thriller you read as a child?The aptly named BookSleuth is another great place to find forgotten books.Use community forums organized by genre and provide as much detail as possible for members to help you.

3. LibraryThing: Name That Book


LibraryThing isGoodreadsA less trendy, more savvy alternative to .Start a new topic for your specific search in this community group and enter all the book details you can remember.

Ask your social network to name that book

By now, you should have got the book or recovered your memory.If not, your search may have hit a frustrating hurdle because the book-loving masses haven't been able to save you.So now is the time to send a distress signal on the social network of your choice to expand your reach.

1. Facebook

Social networking isn't just about finding long-lost friends.You can also draw on the wisdom of the crowd to help you find that elusive book.However, your social circle may be too limited, so use book clubs to broaden your search.

Mark Zuckerberg founded "year of the book, and ended with over 600,000 followers. Like Andrew Luck Book ClubFriday Reads Such small public groups are growing.

2. Twitter

Start with a Twitter search.Hashtags make Weibo work, but a generic #books or #bibliophile hashtag might be too broad.Instead, try inserting specific types into hashtag searches (for example, #DarkFantasy or #UrbanFantasy) to narrow down the results and/or when you ask for help.

3. Quora


The Q&A site is probably the largest gathering of "experts" outside of Facebook and Twitter. The best thing about Quora is that you can expect a high-quality response.

4. Stack Exchange


Stack Exchange is a hodgepodge of 168 Q&A communities. Stack Overflow is probably the most popular with programmers, but there are also niche communities for ebooks and literature.Then, you can also enter specific types of communities and ask questions.Science fiction and fantasy novels are popular.

Use Wikipedia


A google search should find the lost book.But if you feel lazy, you can use Wikipedia as a book-finding tool.This huge online encyclopedia has an ever-growing knowledge base of the world, so chances are it will also have clues about titles you can't remember.

Here are three ideas for searching through Wikipedia for a book:

Wikipedia:Book sources: Click these collections of links to directories of libraries, booksellers, and other book databases.

Wikipedia Ste Search: Enter your keyword and use the Wikipedia search engine or Google's site search operator, [keyword]

Browse linked Wikipedia pages: Since Wikipedia links pages such as hubs and spokes, any similar book page can point to information about the book you're searching for.

Help others find forgotten books too

The Internet relies on the kindness of strangers.Thankfully book lovers are everywhere, and this fraternity is an amazing collaboration even when looking for a book with a vague description.So the next time you ask yourself "What book is that?", try to recall any tiny details of the book.

Even a small detail is a clue - for example, any physical features or illustrations.Try to evoke some relevant memories.What did you do when you read that book?How old were you then?Is it a gift, or did you borrow it?

Finally, the best advice for every book lover is to make a reading list and get it organized.

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