THURSDAY 13: My 13 Best First Lines of Novels

My 13 Best First Lines of Novels from books I have read:

1. It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. 

George Orwell, 1984, [1939] 

 

2. It was a wrong number that started it, the telephone ringing three times in the dead of night, and the voice on the other end asking for someone he was not. 

Paul Auster, City of Glass, [1985]

 

3. 124 was spiteful.

Toni Morrison, Beloved, [1987] 

 

4. Mother died today.

Albert Camus, The Stranger, [1942] 

 

5. I am a sick man . . . I am a spiteful man.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground, [1864] 

 

6. All this happened, more or less.

Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five, [1969] 

 

7. They shoot the white girl first.

Toni Morrison, Paradise, [1998]

 

8. It was the day my grandmother exploded.

Iain M. Banks, The Crow Road, [1992] 

 

10. I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974.

Jeffrey Eugenides, Middlesex, [2002]

 

11. It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York.

Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar, [1963] 

 

12. It was a pleasure to burn.

Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451, [1953] 

 

13. Vaughan died yesterday in his last car-crash.

J. G. Ballard, Crash, [1973] 

 

Do you have any favourites of your own? What's your Thursday 13?

My choices from the books I have read, and out of this list found at the Info Please Website

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17 comments:

  1. I have quite a few but I can't think of them right now...too early LMAO! Loved Middlesex...that was a great book, I remember reading it.

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  2. LOL yes, I know that feeling. When I write my blog comments on other peoples blogs, it's quite often so early I don't think I make sense half the time! LOL But I try. :)

    Thanks for your comment, Janet!

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  3. These are all great. As an author I can appreciate the struggle to make that first line/paragraph, memorable. Fun list. Happy T13!

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  4. You had me hooked from 1984 onwards. Great lines there.

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  5. I love reading books but I don't remember quite their first line.
    Nice idea for T13!

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  7. The only first lines I seem to remember are from Pride and Prejudice (lol) and A Tale of Two Cities. 1984 served as supplementary reading I had in a gradschool subject.

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  8. I can't help but think of Snoopy's [Charlie Brown's fame] writing -his first and most memorable first line..."It was a dark and stormy night"

    My 13 is listed below my Thursday Thunks...scroll down a bit on my blog entry. It's all about odd surnames and their origins today ---like Suess, etc. Here they are I'm going through the Mr. Linky right now, so if you've stopped by already and I didn't know.......thanks for the visit.

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  9. Now I really want to know how 124 can be spiteful.

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  10. I think Nora Roberts writes some great first lines, but I don't have any of her books handy.

    124 is spiteful is an intriguing line.

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  11. First lines are designed to draw you in. Great list!

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  12. nice ones, and up there are 3 novels I really should read

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  13. It didn't take? I was remembering the last line from Jitterbug Perfume: Indigo, indigoing, indigone.

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  14. you have a lot of good books on your list. I particularly love the first line of The Bell Jar. That was my favorite book in high school.

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  15. THANKS for your comments:

    Adelle Laudan - I know it must be difficult to decide on that first all important line! Happy T13!

    anthonynorth - Thank you, you're very kind!

    Willa - Thank you Willa! Well, I did have some help with the website I quoted, but only picked out those from the list I had read. A small part of the list, too! :)

    Hazel - Funny, I didn't do 1984 at school. If I had it may have spoiled it for me. School books did that to me! LOL

    Hootin' Anni - I can't wait to see your Thursday Thunks, Anni! Intriguing!

    @Alice - I don't think it will be what everyone expects, from reading that first line. :)

    Shelley Munro - I'll have to check Nora Roberts first lines, now you've said that! :)

    Celticlibrarian - Thank you, I hope to pick out some more of my fav's.

    Blodeuedd - Oh, I hope you do! They're all good in my opinion! Which ones?

    @colleen - Oh, you have got me thinking now, a last line list for next week - but would that cause a lot of upset - for those who have not read the books? :)

    @jehara - I was a late starter with The Bell Jar LOL but loved it, and so wished I'd never taken so long to pick it up. I think I saw a documentary on telly about Sylvia Plath, and that made me go and get the book.

    Thanks again, everyone. Hope I've not missed anyone out. Have a great day!

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  16. Great list! I especially like the opening line from Slaughterhouse Five.

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  17. i'm in LOVE with this tt! so creative! i need to finally read The Bell Jar.

    happy tt!
    www.snidecommentary.com

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