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Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

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Turkeytop
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Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Fri Apr 26, 2019 7:13 pm

The first sentence of any novel has to grab the reader, or they may not keep reading.

Here is a memorable one from Tim Dorsey's Pineapple Grenade.


A prosthetic leg with a Willie Nelson bumper sticker washed ashore on the beach, which meant it was Florida.



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Bryce
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Bryce » Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:00 pm

I opened my eyes to see the rat taking a piss in my coffee mug.

Warren Ellis, Crooked Little Vein


If you have a really big butt, can you get away with doing things half-assed?

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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:35 pm

Bryce wrote:
Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:00 pm
I opened my eyes to see the rat taking a piss in my coffee mug.

Warren Ellis, Crooked Little Vein

Yes. I would read on.



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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:40 pm

The idea really came to me the day I got my new false teeth.


Coming Up For Air

George Orwell



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moldyoldie
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by moldyoldie » Sat May 04, 2019 10:29 am

One of my favorites:

"As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect."
-Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka


"The primary purpose of a liberal education is to make one's mind a pleasant place in which to spend one's leisure."
- Sydney J. Harris

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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Sat May 04, 2019 8:17 pm

From one of my favourite American writers of the 20th century, Erskine Caldwell.

The Journeyman 1935

The mud-splattered rattletrap of an automobile rolled off the road and came to a dead stop beside the magnolia tree.



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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Sat May 11, 2019 10:53 pm

IF YOU REALLY want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.
The Catcher In The Rye -- JD Salinger



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Bryce
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Bryce » Sun May 12, 2019 12:38 pm

First paragraph from a book by my favorite crime author.
There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands’ necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.


If you have a really big butt, can you get away with doing things half-assed?

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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Sun May 12, 2019 4:02 pm

Bryce wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 12:38 pm
First paragraph from a book by my favorite crime author.
There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands’ necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.

Well, who is it?



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Bryce
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Bryce » Sun May 12, 2019 4:04 pm

Turkeytop wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 4:02 pm
Bryce wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 12:38 pm
First paragraph from a book by my favorite crime author.
There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands’ necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.

Well, who is it?
The late, great Raymond Chandler.


If you have a really big butt, can you get away with doing things half-assed?

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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Sun May 12, 2019 4:06 pm

Bryce wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 4:04 pm
Turkeytop wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 4:02 pm
Bryce wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 12:38 pm
First paragraph from a book by my favorite crime author.
There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands’ necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.

Well, who is it?
The late, great Raymond Chandler.

Of course. Nobody writes them like that anymore.



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Turkeytop
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Re: Favourite Opening Lines From Novels

Post by Turkeytop » Mon May 13, 2019 3:35 pm

All these are from my favourite Detroit Crime Writer, Elmore Leonard.

Every time they got a call from the leper hospital to pick up a body Jack Delaney would feel himself coming down with the flu or something.
Bandits 1987


Chris Mankowski’s last day on the job, two in the afternoon, two hours to go, he got a call to dispose of a bomb.
Freaky Deaky 1988



A friend of Ryan’s said to him one time, “ Yeah, but at least you don’t take shit from anybody.”
Unknown Man 89 1977



They put Foley and the Cuban together in the back seat of the van and took them from Palm Beach County jail on Gun Club to Glades Correctional, the old redbrick prison at the south end of Lake Okeechobee.
Road Dogs 2009


The Blackbird told himself he was drinking too much because he lived in this hotel and the Silver Dollar was close by, right downstairs.
Killshot 1989


There was a photograph of Frank in an ad in the Detroit Free Press and showed all the friendly salesmen at Red Bowers Chevrolet.
Swag 1976



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