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Gone Girl Review:  A few years ago, there came a time when I felt that the third book I encountered was called "The X's Daughter," with which X stood like any profession, title, rank and imagination for general, cartographer, The book shelf abounded on the book shelf on the daughters of lace-makers, lighthouse keepers, veterinarians, preachers, and miscreants.

Very recently, we think we have entered the age of girls. Paula Hawkins' debut, "The Girl on the Train" was published last year and is still everywhere: Nielsen Bookscan reports that 2.7 million copies have been sold in the United States - the actual number is undoubtedly too high, because this number does not contain eBook sales - and The box-office receipts for the film adaptation reached its first weekend at about $ 25 million. Gillian Flynn's "Gone Girl" is equally ubiquitous a few years ago. This summer belongs to "Girls", Emma Klein's acclaimed debut novel, which is still prominently displayed in every bookstore I enter. Carl Hieasen's "Razor Girl" has recently been on the New York Times best-seller list.

Who are these girls Why are there so many of them? Books with "girl" in the title make up a tiny fraction of all the books published in a given year, but they appear frequently in the bestseller list and other people have written about the trend, often with great nonsense, but none of them were supported by the data set. We are out to change this using the database on Goodreads, a popular social networking website for readers. Our analysis revealed several patterns: The "girl" in the title is more likely to be a woman than the actual daughter, and the author of the book is more likely to be a woman. But if a man wrote a book with the title "girl", the girl was much more likely to die.  

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Gone Girl Review

Why are there so many books? Well, because publishing is an industry that is controlled by mystery and opportunity. If anyone knew the source of witchcraft by which a book sold a million copies, they would all sell millions of copies.

It's not like there's no data - of course there are. As a Penguin Random House author, I can login to a portal that provides real-time sales data on all my titles, complete with an addictive selection of interactive charts. But I don't really know why any of the novels I gave sold copies of it. I can point to the moments of good fortune in the life of the book, but then, there are other authors whose books sold more or less copies than I did. Leaves books, or they don't; They explode, or a slow burning, or fail to ignite.

Because the whole subject has a certain element of mystery, when a book explodes, it has a natural tendency to try to copy elements of its success. "It always seems that when a mega-sales hit in publishing," a New York City writer who openly says, "everyone jumps in to run this success quotient. After all these years of business, I know how long and how long the publishers will continue to thrive. That continues to be a surprise. I guess it's hard to blame them. "

The ones I talked to in the publishing industry theoretically started with the millennial series of Stieg Larson's - "Girl with the dragon tattoo," "The girl who played with fire," "The girl who kicked off the Hornet's house," "Girl on the Web of Spider." "It was my idea, too, but part of the book" Girl "in the title is already the first millennial novel in the United States. It had already risen before it was published. (This was published in a separate headline in Sweden on May 25.) According to Goodreads, this year is turning out to be the biggest year for fantasy girls in the decade, with almost 5 percent of the fiction being titled 'Girl', according to Goodreads' analysis.

These books seem to be built on each other, but it's important to note that not all book titles are in an attempt to replicate the success of past books, as author Heidi Duro told me that her title was in the first 20 novels, "The Girl Who Fells the Sky." There was a line in the book. "I like that it immediately offers a mystery and puts the young adult narrator at the center of the story," he said, "though the book is told from the perspective of many characters." Another author, Sara McCarthy, told me that her novel was titled "About a Girl" because "it's literally about a girl, but more accurately it's the title of a Nirvana song."

Duro and McCarthy are two lucky novelists who got that title for their book; Not everyone is so lucky. Generally speaking, titles are like book covers; The author is invited to be part of the selection process, but in the end the author is not in any way determined. (Photographer and author Deborah Kopaken wrote a chilling essay about it a few years ago for The Nation. Her career memoir as a war photographer was titled "Shutterbabe", in contrast to her wishes.) Authors and publishers generally do not read much when there is a disagreement on the record. Due New York City Agent requested not to be named: Kashna is a small world, and it takes a certain amount of guilt to alienate a business partner.

People in the publications will occasionally speak openly when you are unwilling to be named, so a New York City agent reiterated: "I recently surveyed the Barnes and Noble bestseller shelves," the agent wrote in an email, and saw 'The Woman' At Cabin 10 'and thought' we have finally graduated. They have been allowed to be female again. Hallelujah. '"

I was often curious that "girl" books were more often than not published; I wanted to understand who wrote these books and the fate of the "girl" in the title. With the help of research assistants I have looked at Book 1 of 2,000 or so popular books with "girls" or "girls" in the title Goodreads. I filtered the books with a rating of 250 or less as a means of subtracting the dataset in a manageable form and then filtered out the books for kids and young adults .2 I kept 810 books with all my heavy hitters. This makes for a great representative sample of "girl" titles.

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As one might suspect, the authors of these books were mostly girls themselves.

"And I thought women hated being called girls," the agent continued. "What are we suppressing?"

I don't think we're withdrawing. I think it's fair to say that publishers want to sell as many books as possible, and that they have found wild successes in books like "Gone Girl" and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" that they think can help keep "Girl" in the title. But the agent's comment about "Cabin 10 in Woman" made me think about one of my colleagues at the Millions, Eden Lepaki, who published a novel titled "Female No. 1 17" the following year. He was another lucky writer who got the title he wanted. She told me through an email, "I thought about the duality of the girl / woman, and that means something that the book is not called 'girl no-1 17'." It could not be named simply! It is very inaccurate, inaccurate and stupid. It seems.

The character of Lepucci's title at the beginning of the book is 41, but the data - and, well, personal experience - suggests that calling someone a girl of age is not a barrier. I asked my editor Jennifer Jackson of Knopf if she had any idea about the trend. Jackson suggested, "Maybe 'girl' points to a weakness that bet," or inevitably escalates in a way that promises the story? "

This is an interesting idea. What happens to the girls in these stories? With the help of a research assistant, I picked titles or infers based on the girl's position in the title because we could know the girl's status based on the book's Goodreads description. The good news is, the girl is usually fine:

It’s important to note what the data does and does not show. It wouldn’t be fair to extrapolate from this that women and girls are more likely to be dead or missing across all books written by men; only that they’re more likely to be dead or missing in books by men with “girl” in the title.

I can’t think of any mitigating factor that fully explains this. Sure, women may be more likely to write memoirs with the word “girl” in the title, and we can safely assume a near-100 percent chance that the girl in the title survived to tell the story, but there are too few memoirs in this list — about a dozen, out of hundreds of titles by women — to skew the data in any significant way. The same goes for guidebooks (e.g., “Entre Nous: A Woman’s Guide To Finding Her Inner French Girl,” which is presumably for women who don’t share my distaste for being called girls.) Perhaps, when you looked at the above charts, the thought crossed your mind that it’s just that women are writing books that are generally less dark, to which I can only reply that you might consider reading more Denise Mina and Gillian Flynn. The explanation for the divergence between the fates of the titular girls could be as simple as women perhaps being more likely to write books with female protagonists. Book protagonists often appear in the book’s title — think of John Le CarrĂ©’s The Night Manager, for instance — and killing off the protagonist is a relatively unusual authorial choice.

All trends pass, in publishing and elsewhere. The “girl” books, though, will be with us for at least a little while longer. I had dinner recently with Michael Link, a bookseller at Joseph-Beth in Cincinnati. When I told him about this project, he laughed and said that he and his colleagues had joked about imposing a moratorium on books with “girl” in the title. A week later, he sent me an email: “There are five different galleys on the shelf with ‘girl’ in the title pubbing this fall.”   

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