How do I find a book by plot?

Answered by Willian Lymon

Finding a book by plot can be a challenging task, especially if you only have a vague description or a few details to go by. However, there are several strategies you can employ to track down the book you’re looking for. In this answer, I will outline five steps you can take to find a book title by plot or a vague description.

Step 1: Write Down the Details
Before you begin your search, it’s essential to gather and write down as many details about the book as possible. Even if the information seems insignificant, it could be the key to uncovering the title. Start by jotting down any specific plot points, character names, settings, or memorable scenes that you can recall. Additionally, note down any keywords or phrases that you associate with the book. This will help you in the later steps of your search.

Step 2: Use Google (or another search engine)
Once you have your list of details, head over to your preferred search engine, such as Google, and type in the information you have. Start with the most specific details and gradually broaden your search if needed. Enclose phrases or specific keywords in quotation marks to search for exact matches. For example, if you remember a unique character name like “Eleanor Oliphant,” try searching for “book with character named Eleanor Oliphant.” Be prepared to sift through multiple pages of search results and try different combinations of keywords until you find a promising lead.

Step 3: Consult Reddit
If your initial search doesn’t yield any results, turn to online communities like Reddit for assistance. There are several subreddits dedicated to helping people find books based on descriptions or plots. One popular subreddit is r/whatsthatbook, where you can provide the details you remember, and fellow Redditors will try to help you identify the title. Be sure to follow the subreddit’s posting guidelines to increase your chances of receiving accurate suggestions.

Step 4: Ask Your Social Media Circle
Don’t underestimate the power of your social media connections. Share your quest for the book title on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Explain the plot or vague description you remember and ask if anyone in your network recognizes it. Your friends, family, or acquaintances might have read the book or know someone who has, increasing your chances of getting a helpful response. Remember to include any relevant details you’ve gathered in Step 1 to jog their memories.

Step 5: Ask a Librarian
If all else fails, consider reaching out to a librarian for assistance. Librarians are trained professionals who possess a wealth of knowledge and resources to help you find the book you’re looking for. Visit your local library or utilize their online services to ask for guidance. Librarians have access to specialized databases and tools that can aid in searching for books by plot or description. Provide them with the details you’ve gathered, and they will do their best to assist you in your quest.

Finding a book by plot or vague description may require some perseverance and the utilization of various strategies. By following the steps outlined above, including writing down the details, using search engines and online communities, reaching out to your social media circle, and consulting a librarian, you significantly increase your chances of discovering the book title you’re seeking. Happy searching!