A baker's dozen of first lines to inspire your reading list in 2010.
A guest post by Betsy Jordan.
"In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit." Honestly, if you haven't read The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, I don't think you can say that you are a reader at all! This is the classic book that laid the foundation for the blockbuster Lord of the Rings trilogy. It's much more approachable than LOTR, so if you haven't yet read it - do yourself a favor. Read it!!
"They didn't say anything about this in the books, I thought, as the snow blew in through the gaping doorway and settled on my naked back." Thus begins the account of the daily life of a new veterinarian in rural England. James Herriot's All Creatures Great and Small is a fascinating - and often hilarious - memoir written by a man whose arm is up a cow. Literally.
"It was raining. A soft, silvery drizzle sifted down out of the night sky and wreathed around the blocky watchtowers of the city of Cimmura, hissing in the torches on each side of the broad gate and making the stones of the road leading up to the city shiny and black." I love this book! And the series that followed it. The Diamond Throne by David Eddings is full of well developed characters, intricate plot lines, and incredible readability that should put this delightful fantasy at the top of anyone's reading list.
"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's Pride and Prejudice is definitely one of my favorite books. It can be difficult to read at first though, as she has so many characters. So, feel free to watch the A&E miniseries of the same name for a great intro to this classic. Then, go tackle the book. You won't regret it!
"'Elnora Comstock, have you lost your senses?' demanded the angry voice of Katharine Comstock while she glared at her daughter.'" A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter is over 100 years old now, but has lost none of its charm. A coming-of-age tale about a young girl and her mother, it follows Elnora through high school and into womanhood against the fascinating backdrop of the Indiana woods.
"Squire Trelawney, Dr. Livesey, and the rest of these gentlemen having asked me to write down the whole particulars about Treasure Island, from the beginning to the end, keeping nothing back but the bearings of the island, and that only because there is still treasure not yet lifted, I take up my pen in the year of grace 17-- and go back to the time when my father kept the Admiral Benbow Inn and the brown old seaman with the sabre cut first took up his lodging under our roof." This may well be one of the longest first lines ever, and it does demonstrate Robert Louis Stevenson's wordy writing style, but Treasure Island should not be discounted because of it. It's a grand adventure that is just as much fun read aloud as it is read privately.
Read Well, Friend
She's good, isn't she? Tune in soon for the rest of Betsy's list. In the mean time, read another review by Betsy here. http://abookwithaview.blogspot.com/2009/09/oh-to-be-ordinary.html