Thomas Harris: The Laziest Titler in the Publishing Industry

Today’s big news: Thomas Harris has turned out another Hannibal book, just in time for the holidays. I’ll keep my thoughts on Mr. Harris’s books to myself. There is something more troubling at work here.

The new book is called Hannibal Rising — this after the imaginatively titled Hannibal.

Was ever there an author more lazier with his titles? Where other authors might give you titles like Special Topics in Calamity Physics or I Feel Bad About My Neck, words that make us curious about the inner contents, Mr. Harris has decided upon Hannibal and Hannibal Rising.

Well, I don’t believe it’s too late. And, as a public service to Delacorte Press, I offer the following titular alternatives:

  • Bride of Hannibal
  • Revenge of Hannibal
  • Hannibal Strikes Again
  • Son of Hannibal
  • It Came From Hannibal
  • The Amazing Adventures of Hannibal & Hannibal
  • Hannibal X
  • Just When You Thought It Was Safe: Hannibal
  • The Hannibal That Wouldn’t Die
  • Hannibal: Season of the Witch
  • Fishing with Hannibal
  • The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Hannibal
  • Hannibal, Hannibal
  • The Night of the Living Hannibal
  • Putting the Nib in Hannibal
  • Hannibal: Dream Warriors
  • Hannibal II: Electric Boogaloo
  • I Ate Out With Hannibal and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt
  • Hannibal, How About You?
  • My Dinner With Hannibal
  • Hannibal’s Marauders
  • Hannibal Disco Derby
  • Hannibal Will Be 25 in the Year 2000
  • Hannibal: Not the Cannibal You Were Expecting
  • Hannibal, American Style
  • The Good, The Bad & The Hannibal
  • I Once Knew a Cannibal Called Hannibal
  • Once, Twice, Three Times a Hannibal
  • Hannibal Cordon Bleu
  • Crouching Tiger, Hidden Hannibal
  • Hannibal, Too
  • I Have No Hannibal and I Must Eat
  • Hannibal: The Early Years
  • Hannibal on Handball
  • Hannibal If You Love Jesus
  • Hannibal Takes Manhattan


  1. In all fairness to him (which is not something I’m sure he deserves after Hannibal, or the few dreadful chapters I actually managed to read), isn’t it possible that the publisher had a hand in the title? With Hannibal, the title told readers more or less everything they needed to know: “Remember that character from the author’s other books? More to the point, remember Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of him? Wasn’t that creepy? Well here he is, in his own book. It’s like the others, but only more so!” Hannibal Rising may not be quite as spot-on — unless the book involves a high-speed hot-air-balloon chase — but it’s not the most unoriginal I’ve heard.

    The Silence of the Lambs is fairly original, at least as titles go…

  2. Good ones. These were going through my head as I read yours.

    Extremely Close, Incredibly Hannibal.
    Two Hannibals, Fat and Thin
    Searching for Hannibal Hannibal
    A Farewell to Hannibal
    To Hannibal or Have Not Hannibal

  3. What about:
    The Curious Incident of the Hannibal in the Night
    The Emperors Hannibal

    I can’t believe no one has suggested Hannibals on a Plane.

  4. Here Comes Hannibal
    It’s Fucking Hannibal, Stupid
    The Adventures of Hannibal Across the 8th Dimension

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