Suggested by: Nithin
Here’s another idea about memorable first lines from books.

What are your favourite first sentences from books? Is there a book that you liked specially because of its first sentence? Or a book, perhaps that you didn’t like but still remember simply because of the first line?

Opening lines are important, because usually this will tell the readers if the story is engaging and worth reading. Of course there are some stories that may come off as a little slow in the beginning and need some time to build up the suspense or climax, still we could not deny that it is the first line that attracts the readers to continue reading the book.

Here are just some of the few I like:

  • The Treatment by Mo Hayder
  • When it was all over, DI Jack Caffery, South London Area Major Investigation Team (AMIT), would admit that, of all the things he had witnessed in Brixton that cloudy July evening, it was the crows that jarred him the most.

  • Secondhand Smoke by Karen E. Olson (in TBR pile but I sneaked a peek when I first bought the book)
  • I smelled smoke.

  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • It was a pleasure to burn.

  • The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly
  • Once upon a time - for that is how all stories should begin - there was a boy who lost his mother.

There are a lot more others but as I am currently not able to access to my book piles, the above list will have to do. So, what are your favourite first sentences?

21 Responses
  1. Kat Says:

    Oh you can remember them. Nice. I can't remember any at all :P

  2. Melody Says:

    Kat, I wish I have that good memory! LOL. I can only remember these few titles with interesting first sentences. As for the exact first sentences, I googled them. ;)

  3. Alice Says:

    Ah yes, Melody. I remembered the two by Karen E. Olson and Ray Bradbury. Great choices. :)

  4. Melody Says:

    I'm glad you think the same, Alice. :)

  5. Thanks! That Bradbury line is good!

    Here is my BTT post

  6. Anonymous Says:

    I used a Jane Austen line, Madeliene L'Engle, Harry Potter,and one from the Illiad.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    I love The Book of Lost Things first line. If the book wasn't already on my wishlist I'd run over and add it. :-)

  8. SmilingSally Says:

    Ray Bradbury's line causes me to remember the entire book. What a great work! Thanks for the reminder.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Oh, I love that opening line from Fahrenheit 451 . Wish I had thought of it!

  10. You just reminded me of one of my favorites. I end not to remember first sentences. There are some I encounter that grab me right away, but then once I move on in the book, I soon forget. I don't always have a good memory, I'm afraid.

  11. The Ray Bradbury is a good one.

  12. smariek Says:

    I love the Olson & Bradbury lines.

    Here's my BTT post, I can't seem to leave a comment on the BTT site. :-(

  13. Debi Says:

    Oh, very good choices, Melody! I love " was the crows that jarred him the most."

  14. Melody Says:

    Gautami - I love that opening line from Ray Bradbury! A true classic!

    Bluestocking - I wish I could remember some of Jane Austen's lines. Pride and Prejudice is one of them.

    Koolaidmom - I hope you'll enjoy reading that book. :)

    Smilingsal - I love the premise of that book! Something extraordinary and outstanding.

    Readerville - That's one of the great opening lines that I'd always remember. :)

    Wendy - I don't have a good memory either. ;) But some lines are really unforgettable.

    Confuzzled books - Yes, and it looks like most of us agree. :)

    Smariek - They're outstanding, aren't they? ;)

    Debi - Thanks! :) That opening line from Mo Hayder still give me chills whenever I read it.

  15. Kim L Says:

    Wow if you are quoting those without looking them up, I'm impressed. I don't think I could quote any opening lines from the top of my head. I just don't have the memory!

  16. Melody Says:

    I didn't, Kim. I've a short memory so I couldn't remember those lines, but I definitely remember some titles with great opening lines though! ;)

  17. Great choices, I especially like the John Connolly one.

  18. Anonymous Says:

    Those are good choices, especially the one from Fahrenheit 451.

    I posted a few of my favourite first lines in my post here.

  19. Melody Says:

    Yes, Nithin. The opening line of Fahrenheit 451 is a classic! I love it! :)

  20. The Fahrenheit 451 is a great opening.

  21. Melody Says:

    It is, Chris!

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