We’ve been working on solving book mysteries still 1995, and have accumulated quite a database of old queries. You can peruse the first 17 years of these archives on the Solved Mysteries and the Most Requested Books on Loganberry Books’ website to see if any ring a bell (and we highly recommend this). You can also type some keywords into the search feature at the top right of this Stump the Bookseller blog to see if any queries here look similar to yours.
If you think you remember the title, or a part of it, enter it into a used booksellers consortium such as Addall, ABE, ViaLibri or try a card catalog system like The Library of Congress or WorldCat. Sometimes one unique key word on your part or a scant description from the search results can help you identify the book. Yeah, Google can be helpful, too.
If you’re still stumped, here are some tips for submitting your query:
- Use specific details: Approximate publication year, guesses at the title, character names, quirky plot descriptions are all helpful. Just knowing that this is a big red book with pretty pictures isn’t enough, so rack your brain for some details.
- Give your Book Stumper a title: This can be a fraction of the title, character name, or plot element. Limit this to 3-5 descriptive words. For example, “Cranky Cat” is easier to remember, and more intriguing to read, than, say, “Children’s picture book about a cat.” Your Book Stumper will be posted under this title.
- Send payment: After receiving the nominal fee (via PayPal or check), your Book Stumper will be posted on our site. Any comments, questions, or solutions will be listed in the comments section of that post.
- Keeping Track: As new Stumpers come in, your Stumper may be pushed off the front page. You can still find it by entering the keycode or title of your Stumper in the search box on the top right. You can also bookmark that permalink.
- When your Stumper is solved: we will categorize the post as Solved. The original query and all its comments will stay exactly where it began, retaining the same Stumper Title that you gave it. And we’ll all do a little happy dance for you.