A great opening sentence can sometimes be as memorable as the book it begins.
A good opening sentence can engage a reader into an active universe, initiating a tension that will carry the reader rapidly into the story. It can create within itself a perfect image for that book. It can be poetic in its simplicity, yet full of conflict and character, encapsulating the theme of the book or an entire series.
So, I asked several readers what they thought were great opening lines and here are ten that I think are certain to intrigue, and hopefully make you want to read what follows (that is if you haven’t already read it!)
But I don’t want you to just read these ten. Have a thought to see what opening sentences you have found memorable and share them with the rest of us!
“We need you to kill a man.” – The Cat Who Walks Through Walls by Robert A. Heinlein
“The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.” – Neuromancer by William Gibson
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” – The Hobbit byJ.R.R. Tolkien
“They ate Jorgensen first.” – Plague Year by Jeff Carlson.
“It was a pleasure to burn.” Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
“The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.” – The Dark Tower by Stephen King
“Man,” said Terl, “is an endangered species.” – Battlefield Earth by L. Ron Hubbard
“I’ve watched through his eyes, I’ve listened through his ears, and I tell you he’s the one.” – Enders Game by Orson Scott Card
“I now knew what I was – knew who I was.” – WWW: Watch by Robert J. Sawyer
“The blackness was absolute.” – Hominids: Volume One of the Neanderthal Parallax by Robert J. Sawyer
So now it’s your turn. Tell me a great first line to one of your favorite books.