Mister, Mister: An Idiosyncratic Lit List

May 9, 2014 Idiosyncratic Lit List 22

G’Day Bookworms,

You know what’s fun? Making lists around words, of course! I hope you were expecting me to bust out with 80s ballad “Broken Wings,” because then I won’t feel weird for titling this post in an ambiguous manner. (Mr. Mister? Anybody? Bueller?) I think it’s time we make a list of some fabulous and quirky bookish misters, don’t you?


1. Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater: Only the BEST CHILDREN’S BOOK EVER! Why hasn’t anybody ever sent me a live penguin just because I’m a fan, huh? Just kidding. But really. So much penguiny whimsical goodness. It’s an absolute joy. (my review)

2. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloane: A book about books! And fonts! And Google! It’s great fun, kids, trust me on this one! (my review)


3. Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening by Carol Wall: There’s little I enjoy more than a tale of flowery goodness, and this book has it. Plus, it’s got unlikely friendships and conquering stereotypes and all sorts of feel good moments. It’s a really sweet memoir, guys. I promise.

Question for you, Bookworms. Do you like being called by a formal title? Mr.? Mrs.? Miss? Ms.? 

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22 Responses to “Mister, Mister: An Idiosyncratic Lit List”

  1. Tanya

    What about Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones?
    And yes, I was expecting something about 80s rick ballads.

  2. Jenny @ Reading the End

    I do like being called Ms Mylastname. I always have. It doesn’t feel nearly as formal as, for instance, somebody calling me Jennifer. (Though my true favorite thing is when little kids call me Miss Jenny. A pleasing feature of the South (to me) is the Miss Firstname formulation for adults — it’s respectful but affectionate.)

    • Words For Worms

      I do like being called Miss Katie, not that there’s much call for such things. Most of the children of my acquaintance call me “Aunt”… Biological or not.

  3. Charleen

    It is SO WEIRD being called Mrs! It’s like that old joke of, “Mr. Smith is my father; call me Bill.” Mrs. [Lastname] is my mother-in-law! Not me! It doesn’t help that I’ve only been called that a handful of times in the past seven years, so it’s jarring every time it happens.

    And then of course there’s ma’am. *sigh* Maybe if I lived in the south I’d be used to it, but here… it seems to come up just often enough to make me feel old every time. Guys have it easy. They get one title that doesn’t change with age or marital status. A polite and respectful comment doesn’t send them spiraling into an EXTREMELY PREMATURE mid-life crisis.

    • Words For Worms

      I feel old when I’m called ma’am as opposed to miss, even though TECHNICALLY I’m not a miss anymore. I really really dislike being called Mrs. though. If I must have a title, it’s Ms. or nothing. You call your MIL Mrs. Lastname? I got in the habit of calling my MIL “Mama Kelly” early on. I refer to my FIL as “Bob” even though his name is Jim. It has something to do with him being neat like Bob Saget was in Full House, but yeah. I’m not good with titles.

  4. Monika @ Lovely Bookshelf

    Preach on, Charleen!!!

    Even my students (I teach independently) just call me Monika. The little ones might tack Miss at the front, but I’m not picky.

    Love your idiosyncratic lists, seeing how your mind spins. 🙂

  5. Megan M.

    Ha! Broken Wings! Haven’t heard that in forever. My favorite “Mr.” is Mr. Big’s To Be With You. Love that song!

  6. kristinshafel

    Honorifics feel a little weird to me, too! It doesn’t bother me seeing it written on paper (like, on mail or something) but when people call me Mrs. [maiden/married name] I always, always say “Oh! You can just call me Kristin 🙂 ”

    I gotta say though I really, REALLY LOATHE being called “Miss Kristin.” That is the worst!!! I would rather be called “Mrs. [maiden name]”! I correct people who say that, too, even parents meaning well with little kids. Those little kids can call me “Kristin” too—please, truly, I prefer it. “Miss Kristin” Makes my skin crawl. Gross.

  7. Lori

    Call my old fashioned, but I absolutely LOVE being called Mrs. Palmer 🙂 One of my favorite things is when they hand me my receipt at the grocery store and say “Have a good day, Mrs. Palmer.” We’ve been married 8 years this month and it still makes me giddy!

  8. Rory

    I kept my last name when I married, so it’s a guaranteed way to irritate me to call me Mrs. “Husband’s Last Name”. Just no. I don’t mind Miss Rory though, probably from working with kids in the library.

    To add: Fantastic Mr. Fox.

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