A bastard title (or half-title half-title), commonly referred to as a half-title half-title page, is an additional page bearing an abbreviated version of a book’s name that protects its actual title page when sold unbound leaves. In times past when books were only sold, unbound leaves were “protected” this way by serving as “cover.”.”
Bastard titles refer to book titles that do not accurately reflect their content and instead aim to generate interest or sales. This tactic can be employed by publishers looking to capitalize on trends or authors trying to sell to a specific demographic; bastard titles are frequently part of marketing campaigns with little substance behind their claims.
Bastard titles refer to book titles that do not follow the initial sequence planned by their author or publisher for various reasons, including authors changing the direction of books published out-of-order by publishers or releases occurring out-of-sequence by books in series. Bastard titles can confuse readers who attempt to follow series books chronologically and may lead them astray.
Bastard titles don’t always need to be bad news; sometimes, they may provide essential assistance. Example: If an author was planning on writing a trilogy but decided midway through Book 1 that writing as duology instead would work better for readers, publishers may alter Book 2 to The Second Book of the Duology to inform readers that something has changed regarding series continuity. Bastard titles may reflect more accurately on what the book contains than its original name does; for example, if a novel about robot uprising was released out-of-order and is Book Two in a series, publishers may change its title accordingly to reflect that fact and ensure readers know where this work fits within the series.
Bastard titles may cause readers confusion, so authors and publishers need to communicate why such changes were made and the meaning behind any modifications that have taken place. Most often, a bastard title represents its content accurately – no need for alarm there!