Here’s another idea about memorable first lines from books.

What are your favorite 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?

I was going to do a Booking through Thursday post today.
I don’t think anyone will hate or love a book just because of the first line.

I really cannot remember the first lines of any books I have read. Really. I am not very good at remembering dialogues from movies or favorite lines from books. I know people who can remember an entire scene of a movie dialogue by dialogue. J does that. Suddenly he’ll ask me, ‘Do you remember in so-and-so movie when the hero says this?’ and I am like ‘Not really’. I’ll make him narrate the entire scene and still I won’t remember it. Sad.

Same goes for books. The only line I remember is the one from Kite Runner.
‘Stealing is the biggest sin’. But I am not sure if that is the exact line. I remember it because J once read it aloud to me on the phone when I had urged him to read Kite Runner. He read half of it and then watched the movie instead, which I have to say, though nicely made, does not do half as justice to book.

So instead I’ll tell you about books where I loved the story but I hated the way it was written.
P.S. I love you. I really feel Cecelia Ahern is not a very good writer. At least the book suggests she isn’t. I am not a good writer myself but I can certainly recognize one. The subject matter was very good, the incidents, the structure was very good as well. But her writing was a put off.

Another one?
Bridges of a Madison County. I know I have mentioned this before but I have never come across such bad writing ever. The subject of the book was not very bad though.

Does anybody think Twilight by Stephanie Meyer is not written well? I don’t. My sister does. I think she has hit her head on a wall.

P.S. Thanks to Pete for introducing me to the BTT site.

16 thoughts on “Digressing…BTT

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  1. I don’t remember a lot of first opening lines either, but they are interesting to read and always catches the readers’ attention at first glance. Some good stories are slow in the beginning but gets better and better towards the middle. I guess it all depends on the authors’ writing style.


  2. Hi Melody,

    I think a first good line is easy to write. One can think over it a lot before writing it. But a first line doesn’t do it for me. It has to be the story, the author, the overall writing style and sometimes the cover page. Yes, sometimes I buy books solely on the cover-pages or the titles and so far it has never failed me 🙂

    I’ll never read a book just becuase the first line is mind-blowing.


  3. I loved The Kite Runner, and agree that the movie pales in comparison to the book. I used a Kite Runner quote, too. I read Bridges of Madison County fifteen years ago, but PS I Love You and the first two Twilights are on Mt. TBR.


  4. Gautami: For me the overall writing is very important. If I like most of the book but did not like the ending it does not leave a very good impression on me. Whereas I have read some books with excellent beginnings but then kind of keep dragging on.
    Sorry I am not able to comment on any blogspot blogs, the comment section is blocked at work.

    Thekoolaidmom: I would love to read what line form Kite Runner you have mentioned. I’m guessing it’s the first line but I don’t remember that either. Could you please share your blog link?


  5. I wholeheartedly agree that the Twilight series is not written well at all. I recently reviewed Eclipse on my blog (you can find it under the Book Reviews tab) because I have to read the books for work, and I was not at all impressed.


  6. Ha! I’ve been meaning to do a BTT entry for a few weeks now… maybe next week!

    There’s a short story by Dylan Thomas called “The Outing: A Story” which opens with this paragraph:-

    “If you can call it a story. There’s no real beginning or end and there’s very little in the middle. It is all about a day’s outing, by charabanc, to Porthcawl, which, of course, the charabanc never reached, and it happened when I was so high and much nicer.”

    I think that might be what you call genius.


  7. Readerville: I don’t think I agree. I wouldn’t say she is an extraordinary writer. But she certainly is not bad. And you read books for work? Could there be a better job than this? I so envy you 🙂

    Confuzzled Books: Totally agree with you there…

    Marie: Your comment went into my spam folder. Why don’t you check with your settings?


  8. I usually remember interesting first lines. I made a rather long list of favourite opening sentences. But the first line isn’t usually a good indicator of how the book is going to be.


  9. Hey Nithin, no wonder you suggested this topic.

    Hey Pete, I give credit where it is due 🙂

    Huw: If after reading it a million times you still have to copy it from a book, then I have to say you are very much like me 🙂


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