Once Upon A Time...

January 18, 2019

 

 

An attractive cover may entice you to pick up a novel in a bookshop, and a sparkling blurb may encourage you to ‘look inside’ it on-line, but it's the first sentence of a book that captures your imagination, draws you into the story and make you want to read it, and it's first lines you remember.

 

The first lines of some books have become as famous as the books themselves.

 

Here are fifteen well-known books' opening lines – see how many you recognise!

 

 

 

 

‘It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.’                                                                                       

 

‘It was a bright cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen.'

 

‘Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.’

 

‘Call me Ishmael.’

 

‘Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.’

 

‘Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.'

 

'Hale knew, before he had been in Brighton three hours, that they meant to murder him.”

 

‘I write this sitting in the kitchen sink.’

 

‘Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.’

 

‘The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we understood the gravity of our situation.’

 

‘It was a pleasure to burn.’

 

‘All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’

 

‘The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.’

 

‘All children, except one, grow up.’                                                                                    

 

‘I am a camera with its shutter open, quite passive, recording, not thinking.’

 

They’re all very different, but they all invite you into the book and ask you to stay. If there are any that have you hooked, here they are again with the title of the book and author.

 

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

‘It was a bright cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen.’ 1984 – George Orwell

‘Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.’ Rebecca - Daphne du Maurier

‘Call me Ishmael.’ Moby Dick - Herman Melville

‘Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.’ Little Women - Louisa May Alcott‘

Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.’ The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams

‘Hale knew, before he had been in Brighton three hours, that they meant to murder him.’ Brighton Rock - Graham Greene

‘I write this sitting in the kitchen sink.’ I Capture the Castle – Dodie Smith

‘Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.’ Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone – J K Rowling

‘The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we understood the gravity of our situation.’ The Secret History by Donna Tartt

‘It was a pleasure to burn.’ Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury

‘All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’ Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

‘The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.’ The Go-Between - L P Hartley

‘All children, except one, grow up.’ Peter Pan – J M Barrie

‘I am a camera with its shutter open, quite passive, recording, not thinking.’ Goodbye To Berlin - Christopher Isherwood

Please reload

Featured Posts

Adventures In Theatreland

September 9, 2019

1/10
Please reload

Recent Posts

September 9, 2019

January 18, 2019

Please reload

Archive