Two HP covers

Sorcerer’s Stone or Philosopher’s Stone? 9 Books with Different Titles in Different Countries

A title can make or break a book, as even if you’ve mastered the art of NOT judging a book by its cover, it’s almost impossible not to judge a book by its title. 

 

Here are some of the most notable books which have been published under differing titles in differing parts of the world. 

 

1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone outside of the USA. While filming the movies, the actors had to shoot all scenes with mention of the stone twice, once saying ‘sorcerer’ and again saying ‘philosopher.’ 

 

Two covers

Via Amazon

 

2. Smilla’s Sense of Snow and Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow are the same book by Peter Høeg, however as the book was originally written in Danish, the titles vary due to different translations. A film adaptation starring Julia Ormond and Gabriel Byrne used the former title. 

 

two cover

Via Amazon

 

3. Northern Lights and The Golden Compass are the two titles for the first of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy. A frankly awful film adaptation was made under the title The Golden Compass, which hugely simplified the plot and was, in my opinion, an affront to the books and all who love them. 

 

Two covers

Via Amazon

 

4. The Lonely Girl and Girl With Green Eyes both refer to the second of Edna O’Brien’s Country Girls trilogy. When the first of the series was published in Ireland in 1960, it was banned for its frank depictions of female sexuality. Her family’s parish priest openly burned copies of the novel, which is credited with opening up the dialogue surrounding sexuality and women’s rights in Ireland at the time. 

 

Two covers

Via Amazon and Goodreads

 

5. The Beggar Maid: Stories of Flo and Rose and Who Do You Think You Are? are the same collection of short stories by Nobel Prize-winner Alice Munro. Under the title The Beggar Maid it was nominated for the Man Booker in 1980. Munro is the first ever short-story writer to win the Nobel Prize for her services to literature. 

 

Two covers

Via Amazon and Goodreads

 

6. Little Bee and The Other Hand are the two titles given to Chris Cleave’s novel about a Nigerian asylum seeker and a British magazine editor. A film adaptation starring Nicole Kidman is in the works.

 

Two covers

Via Amazon and Goodreads

 

7. Anne of Windy Willows and Anne of Windy Poplars are the British and North American/Canadian titles for the fourth book in Lucy Maude Montgomery’s beloved Anne of Green Gables series, in which Anne is a teacher and writing letters to her fiance Gilbert. You may remember Gilbert as the boy who called her ‘carrots’ when she first came to Avonlea. Young love.

 

Two covers

Via Amazon and Goodreads

8. Down Under and In a Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson are the titles of his book about Australia. The phrase In a Sunburned Country is taken from the Australian poem My Country by Dorothea MacKellar. 

 

Book cover

Via Amazon

 

9. Schindler’s Ark and Schindler’s List are the British and American titles of Thomas Keneally’s World War II novel, which was later adapted into the hugely successful Steven Spielberg film starring Liam Neeson.

 

Two covers

Via Amazon and Goodreads

 

Featured Image Via Goodreads and Amazon