The Dedication Page

You know, that page you probably skip right over when you initially start a book? Yeah, the dedication page.

I generally read every page of books I finish. Epilogue. Prologue. Everything in between. But I also make it a point to read the dedication pages. All of them. Why? Just because the author decided to include it and that’s reason enough for me to read it. But I’ve never come across a memorable dedication in any book I’ve ever read. That isn’t to say that I think authors should write some great dedication to start their books, but I imagine there are some memorable dedications out there that I just haven’t seen yet.

I’m lucky enough to have written one of these before. And even though I haven’t opened my book in many months, I’m pretty sure I remember mine. I think it read “For mom and dad, I did it!”. That may be slightly off, but it’s something along those lines. I honestly can’t remember ANY dedication I’ve read. Yikes. The only thing I’m thinking of (without checking) is that Robert B. Parker would always dedicate his books to his wife. And I think her name was Joan. That’s about it.

Have you ever read any really cool dedications at the start of a book?

On this day in 2014 I published Recommending Books.


29 thoughts on “The Dedication Page

  1. Tiger Lily, a book that was really beautiful in parts but ultimately a 3-star read for me. It’s a YA retelling of, you guessed it, Peter Pan from Tiger Lily’s perspective.

    The dedication was “For all the girls with messy hair and thirsty hearts,” and it was really one of the things that sold me on reading the book in the first place.

    Also I loved the last Harry Potter book dedication. I can’t remember the exact wording, but it was something like “For you, if you’ve stuck with Harry this long.” But more beautifully-written than that.


  2. I always read dedications. There are some out there that are hilarious. If you search up funny dedications you will find them. The only ones I remember reading were Lemony Snicket’s dedications.


  3. When I wrote my thesis I had to write a dedications page. I thanked my advisor and committee, my mom, and Chelsea. I dedicated it to my dad and said why. My advisor came storming into my office saying I didn’t mention my son, Owen. Why hasn’t I thanked my son in my dedication page, he wondered. He was a noted sexist. He would turn our papers back and tell the male students (the majority, since it id history) that they did excellent work…and then hand back the papers of the female grad students (the whole two of us) and say if it was good “you know, for female scholarship.” So, he couldn’t understand why I could be a mother and not dedicate my masters thesis to my son or at least thank him. I told him he literally did nothing to help me research and I fact, (because he was a baby) did everything he could to hinder me writing the thesis so there was no way in hell I was going to thank him publicly in my writing. He just walked out of my office and never said another word about it.


      • The Free Love movement and sex radicalism in the 19th century. There was this woman, Angela Heywood, who wrote a newspaper with her husband from 1872-1894 where she called for the abolition of marriage (but she stayed married and had four oddly named children) and said called for plain speech regarding sex and our bodies. She talked about “cocks” and “cunts” and “fucking” in her publications and her husband was jailed 5 times for what she wrote.


      • She sounds like everyone who wants to be the next E.L. James! Oh, the difference time makes. Well, I don’t know what James thinks of marriage. Or most people for that matter.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I can’t say I recall reading any profound dedication pages during my years of reading, but you sure make me think what I might write if I ever get around to finishing one of the books rattling around in my head!


  5. I love dedication pages. The ones that came to me off the top of my head was J.K. Rowling’s in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and the Veronica Mars book, The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham. They dedicated it to the Veronica Mars movie Kickstarter backers and as a backer, this may be the only time I will get a book dedicated to me. Since it would be kind of hard to name all 91,000+ backers in the book, they did thank us on their website.


    • Another commenter already ruined the last Potter dedication for me. And didn’t that movie make no money at all? I don’t know anything about the book, but I think I did read about it at some point. Maybe.


      • They split the last book into 2 movies. (Insert annoyed grumble here.) I would watch a 30 hour word for word adaptation but man, I hate waiting for the 2nd movie. Case in point, Mocking Jay Part 2!

        But I digress. According to Box Office Mojo, DH2 is number one domestically and worldwide of all the HP movies. It drops to number 2 domestically when adjusted for inflation. DH1 did not do as well but not adjusting for inflation, it was in the middle of the pack for the HP movies.


      • Whoops, I was thinking about Harry and forgot all about Veronica. It made 3 million which isn’t bad as it was only in 300 theaters a week as opposed to wide releases which are in about 3000 theaters per week. It is kind of complicated. Many backers also paid for a download the day it was released, It was more of an On demand/video release and the WB studio ended up renting out the theaters for the screenings like people can do for special events.

        I was lucky enough to have a screening near me and it was a great movie going experience even though I was getting my down load of the movie.


      • I just don’t think Kickstarter is appropriate for any kind of major movie project. I think Spike Lee did something on there too and raised a few million.


  6. I read the dedication pages, but they’re mostly the same in what they say, so I can’t pick out any specific one that sticks in my mind. I do know there is a list of hilarious dedication pages on Buzzfeed or something, and I giggled over those, but other than that, the dedication page is just another page to get past to get to the story. Not that it’s not important to the writer, but as a reader, not as much for me. I have “aww’d” over a few, I’m sure, when it was sappy and sweet, but that’s probably it.


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