Monday, April 16, 2012

favorite firsts

One of my daughter's friends just read Moby Dick. Which, upon saying the words Moby Dick made my brain immediately respond: "Call me Ishmael."

I live for a good first sentence. When I pick up a new book, I don't always judge it by its cover... I judge it by its first sentence.

Here are some of my all time favorites:

In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since. - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (obviously)

"Where's Papa going with that axe?" said Fern to her mother as they were setting the table for breakfast. - E.B. White, Charlotte's Web

I know I'm not an ordinary ten-year-old kid. - R.J. Palacio, Wonder

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife. - Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show. - Charles Dickens, David Copperfield

All this happened, more or less. - Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five

The circus arrives without warning. - Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circus (which I love because the book ends as it began... oops, I've said too much already!)

Do you have any favorite first lines?

1 comment:

  1. There are strange things done 'neath the midnight sun
    By the men who moil for gold - Robert Service, The Cremation of Sam McGee, Robert Service (in honor of poetry month)