First Lines

There is a mini-cult of first lines among us writers. The first line is sort of like the lobby of the book: the first thing you see, coloring all subsequent impressions. It’s one place where you’re truly allowed to show off.

So we writers like to geek out on first lines. We get all excited about collecting and trading them, having top-ten lists and all-time faves. We even reveal our chapter first lines in advance as tiny spoilers.

As many people have spotted, Uglies, which begins:

The early summer sky was the color of cat vomit.

pays homage to the opening of William Gibson’s Neuromancer:

The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.

I bring this up now because of this article on io9 discussing great science fiction first lines. It’s cool to read all these lines all together, and of course it doesn’t hurt that they include my adult novel, The Risen Empire, which opens with:

The five small craft passed from shadow, emerging with the suddenness of coins thrown into sunlight.

Oddly, io9 calls this line “a little adjective-heavy.” Dudes, it only has one adjective, the word “small”!

So for the sake of deep analysis, here are all my YA novel first lines:

The Uglies Series
“The early summer sky was the color of cat vomit.”

“Getting dressed was always the hardest part of the afternoon.”

“The six hoverboards slipped among the trees with the lightning grace of playing cards thrown flat and spinning.”

“Moggle,” Aya whispered. “You awake?”

Midnighters Series
The Secret Hour
“The halls of Bixby High were always hideously bright on the first day of school.”

Touching Darkness
“At last, everything was sorted out.”

Blue Noon
“Bixby High’s late bell shrieked in the distance, like something wounded and ready to be cut from the herd.”

The New York Trilogy
So Yesterday
“We are all around you.”

“After a year of hunting, I finally caught up with Sarah.”

The Last Days
“I think New York was leaking.”

Soon I’m going to expand on this post, and talk about why I started books with these lines. In the meantime, I’d be interested to hear from you about them

Plus: What are your favorite first lines? Pick any novel you want, except mine!

568 thoughts on “First Lines

  1. Kay-wa: I watched the popcorn thing and then i saw another video. And at the end the guy in the video said “It didn’t work, if you know anything just tell me.” So i scrolled down to look at the comments and this girl said “Dude, it works. Just try putting a microwave under it.” I dont know i just found it kinda funny… Of course it is really late…omg…its only 8:57. Ok well it seems really late so i usually think everything is funny when its late. But it really isnt. IDK! It was just funny.

  2. Hey, you know, im just wondering but, uh,…WHERE THE HECK ARE YOU SCOTT! Just thought id put that out their, you know, in case you wanted to answer. And and by the way, i no im just like commenting to nobody but yeah if anyone wants to join me, feel free. Until then, ill talk to myself. Yep. fun times.

  3. hehe knew peeps would be talking about B.D here

    so, im supposed to be doing a proj 4 tommorow that i still havnt statred (bet ur all thinking, gosh im glad im not her lol) so,
    to cut a long thought proses short,
    I was really annoyed when i was reading it, like surley it had to get better? Nope

    I WAS happy that it ended without any of our vamp or werewolf friends carking it- I was so nervouse to actually get the book cause i knew that either Jake would die or imprint, but not both.
    I am in love with Jacob Black. Still.

    I also loved that Jacob told Charlie, although i would have liked it if Charlie knew more- i know lots of people thought it was stupid that he knows, and it is, but it was a bit of a petty want of mine, so im glad it happened. Shame Reenes just left hanging- good one S.M

    Also, the pregnecy is totaly impossible- skip how me and some other online peeps got to that conclusion… oh, ok- so S.M talks about the 23 and 25 chromosones, and so Nessie would be sterile, cause shes a mix. (like a donkey and horse…) So Jake wouldnt have imprinted on her, cause he is supposed to imprint on someone who best carries on his strain.

    I was origonaly really annoyed, and i think that that helped me move along- i felt like B.D didnt count, so i could just live in the first three- and i wasnt so sad for it to be finished cause there was an ending but it didnt matter to me, so its like it never ended… know what im saying??

    But then i read a thread on Amazon about how the charaters grew and developed and now im rereading it and im trying to be positive.

    Also, when rereading it i found somthing really interesting. Instead of measuring time in seconds- torwards the start- its measured in heartbeats. When u reread it (wich we all know we will) look out for it. Espessially Jake- i loved it cause it showed how he still thought about every of Bellas heartbeats, how Bella still thought of all her heartbeats.

    Anyway, sorry about the long post, i needed to get it off 🙂

  4. yeah, i know the disscusion was a few days ago but havnt had internet access 4 a while.
    Also, havnt posted in ages, hi everyone!
    cant think of any great first lines at the mo. maby they’ll come to me…

  5. Hiya peoples ^^
    first comment on this blog for me. Big honor. Funny I found it. Wow. I was google-searching Uglies in French and voila, up comes this blog!

    Fave first lines… I dunno.

  6. Hey! I havn’t been on in 4ever! I missed you guys!
    You missed me too right? 🙁
    of course you did! 😎

    the chapter titles were great, I’m happy to say i FINALLY convinced my step-mom to read twilght (shes a big Uglies fan) It is totally cool that Jacob imprinted, did you realize that Jacob is now Rosalie’s nephew in-law (I think) and i agree Isle Esme was a bit rushed

  8. oh by the way my mom did return my books but I now have limited reading time (it majorly sucks) however not reading so much has cured my insomnia (by the way i reread BD yesterday)

  9. I love Breaking Dawn! I finished it in two days! It would have been one but I fell asleep eventually. I hate Bella! I could fill the whole page p with reasons on why I HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE her.

  10. 1st of all, she hurts Edward constently. When I fall in love, I’m never going to hert him like that. jacob said in Breaking Dawn, he looked like he was being burned when he saw bella and he was going to BEGG for Jacob to kill him! I cried so many times during the Twilight sereies it was ridicules! But i love it anyway. Second, she couldn’t just give up the kid! I mean it links with number 1 but she caused EVERYONE unnessesary pain and suffering including herself! It was terrible! And third, she always hurt Jacob by staying with him while she was with Edward! she should have ditched him when Edward came back! It would have been easier for her not knowing she was in love with him, and Jacob would have been okay eventually. His love for her would simply fade over time like your favorite song, or your cutest pair of jeans! Fourth, bella is so lucky to have someone care for her that much! 100000000000000 girls would KILL or bite off their own fingers o be adored that much, and she just treated it like some normal thing! I HATE her! And she is always so picky about maney. If Edward has all the money in the world why would she care if he bought her a few nice thing?! And when Alice bought her all those nice clothes, she never wore them which is phony because she doesn’t want to waste money, but shes doing that but letting those clothes go to waste! And if I were her, I’d be thrilled to know Jacob imprinted on renesmee! Not MAD! It’s like hitting two birds with one stone. Jacob doesn’t hurt anymore, and her baby has someone to take care of her when Bella is having sex with Edward! No, half the book was them hving sex! BLAH! I loved the book, but I HATE bella! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER! HATE HER!

  11. I wish Isle Esme had been a bit longer…especially that first time, all SM wrote was them going down into the water…she didn’t even start it. But the second time was better…at least it had a beginning…

  12. wow. 4 miles?! ewww! i would die. i just got like extremely good news though! my coach just sent out a letter saying that we weren’t gonna have 5 days of conditioning. instead we would have 3 days (waking up at 5:30 being at the softball field by 6 running till 7) which is great cuz i was really dreading going to softball and then straight to school. we still have practice every day at 4 though but that’s nothing. 😀 so i is happy.

    lol. interesting Bran-la. it’s probably true though about the microwave under it cuz this one started on fire. lol. see… i’m not gonna lie.. i feel so gullible. lol. the 1st time i watched that video i was like “holy crap the cell phones started the popcorn on fire!!!” yes. i can be fooled easily. and i’m not even blonde. sad.. isn’t it? haha.

    guess what guys! i went shopping yesterday. and i got 4 new books! 🙂 i got The Host, Looking for Alaska, The Vampire Diaries, and The It Girl. and i got a bunch of school clothes. 🙂

    i disagree. Bella is fawesome!

  13. yes i did. and i still disagree. because your over looking the most important part.. Edward can’t live without her. i mean i don’t disagree that she has hurt Edward a lot but it would hurt him even more if she was dead. also think about how much Bella has changed his life.. he’s finally happy. and btw Edward has hurt Bella too.. don’t forget about that. i cried when Edward left her. i guess i just identify with Bella more.. or maybe i’m jealous of her, like you said 10000000000000 girls would kill to be adored that much. but i love Edward! …and so i understand that she can’t live without him and he can’t live without her. i don’t know. that’s my opinion. and you are entitled to yours as well so i don’t want to make a big thing out of this. okay?

  14. Haha. Yes, well we can all be fooled at some point in our lives.

    Ok, have you ever had one of those moments were you give yourself an inspirational speech? Like you talk to yourself in your head and when your done you go, “Wow, that was really good.” Cause i just did that. I do it all the time. Maybe its just me and im weird but it was quiet the speech. Haha. Im weird. But it was so good!

  15. yeah. haha. my friends always fool me and scare me. yesterday me and 2 of my friends went shopping and then went out to eat and me and my friend went to the bathroom afterwards and she hid in the stall next to mine and when i walked out she scared me so bad i screamed. lol. and then when we got out of the restroom our parents were gone so we went outside and of course the car was gone.. and we saw a car that looked exactlly like mine that was just pulling around the building towards the exit road and we started chasing after it and it ended up not being my car. lol.

    and yeah, i do that whenever i have to give a big presentation or whatever for school. or right before i get up to bat and the game is all tied up in the final inning or something i give myself a little “you can do this” speech.

    well i’m gonna go try to sleep now.. if i get to sleep it will be like the earliest i’ve gotten to sleep in more than a month. *crossing my fingers* laters.

  16. I agree with some of the reasons why you hate Bells but I love her anyway (I feel the same way about Tally, who has also hurt the people she loves) as Bells says love is irrational, I love the way it ended but I feel bad for Leah, she’s like the only one who dosn’t get a happy ending (kinda the same for Seth) and i wish some one had kicked Jane’s ass… and smuthered Demitri….and ripped Alec’s limbs off…. and squashed Aro and Caius… and you get the idea

  17. AND SCOTT-LA WE REALLY NEED A NEW POST!!!!!! beacause i forgot what this one is about (and I’m to lazy to look)……… oh yay First Lines

  18. I’m so sad, MY COMPUTER’S BROKEN. *sniffles* Idk what happened either, it just blew up. I’m on my brother’s comp right now but until mine’s fixed or I get a new one I won’t be on a lot. *sighs* Such is life.

  19. my printers dead but thats not nearly as trajic (I feel your pain) SCOTT-LA NEW POST ALREADY, PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. okay i’ve got some more first lines that i really like:
    “Sun shining like a big yellow shining…er, warmey planet fire thing.” — Then He Ate My Boy Entrancers (6th book of the Georgia Niclson series by Louise Rennison)
    “Eyes, nose, lips.” — Girl 15, Charming but Insane by Sue Limb
    “I didn’t realize he was a werewolf at first.” — Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
    “You grow up with a kid but you n ever really notice him.” — Loser by Jerry Spinelli
    “I don’t think I’ll ever get married.” –It’s Not the End of the World by Judy Blume

  21. Yeah, I know. I’m in an EXTREMELY angry mood. On top of my screwed up computer, I just got my schedule for school and they messed up everything and won’t let me change it. Instead of Honors Biology I got put in Art 1. I’d be ok with that besides the fact that I need to take Honors Biology and I wanted to get it over with this year. And they put me in a math class two levels lower than what I should be in, and what my counselor told me I would be in. And my parents call them and they just said “Oh well there must have been a reason, we don’t make mistakes like that. If the teacher sees her doing well then she might be moved up though she’ll have to wait till the next semester.” I swear I am going to scream. SCREAM I TELL YOU SCREAM!

  22. Okay, T&Z, breathe in, breathe out. its okay, i’m sure life could be worse.
    ^,..,^ aren’t i encouraging?
    lol jk,
    okay, is there a teacher that ur good friend w/? maybe you can email them and talk to her about ur schedule and stuff, maybe she can convince the ppl that they did ur schedule wrong. or, if that doesn’t work, then just talk to ur counselor about it. ur school is prolly open and stuff during the summer, right? so that’s what i would do.

  23. “The formidable glass-and-steel structure rose from its position on Front Street like a glittering needle threading the sky.”
    City of Glass-Cassandra Clare

    “Herein lies the faithful and true account of my last sixty days, by Kartik, brother of Amar, loyal son of the Rakshana, and the strange visitation I received that has left me wary of this cold English night.”
    Prologue, Rebel Angels-Libba Bray

    “This is what it’s like to be crazy.”
    Seven Tears Into the Sea-Terri Farley

    “Tyler got me a job as a waiter, after that Tyler’s pushing a gun in my mouth and saying, the first step to eternal life is you have to die.”
    Fight Club- Chuck Palahniuk

    And one of my own- “It was cruel of him to put me in a cell that looked out at the daunting and impenetrable, no unconquerable building where I’d met my downfall.”

  24. that is so funny nikki-wa! big girls don’t cry is totally jacob’s song! but i was really happy with the way BD ended. i’m glad SM gave everyone a happy ending. i think she should continue the series in Renesmee’s perspective!

  25. omg anyone know The Yes dance?? lmao
    “Lets do the fork in the garbage disposal! dink dink dink da-dink dink dink dink dink da-dink!”

  26. People have already mentioned Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer but mostly everyone I read said the first sentence in the first chapter not the first sentence in the Preface sooooo…. i like the first sentences of the prefaces :]

    Twilight: “I’d never given much thought to how I would die – though I’d had reason enough in the last few months – but even If I had, I would not have imagined it like this.”

    New Moon: “I felt like I was trapped in one of those terrifying nightmares, the one where you have to run, run till your lungs burst, but you can’t make your body move fast enough.”

    Eclipse: “All our attempts at subterfuge had been in vain.”

    and (EEK IM SO HAPPY TO HAVE THIS FINALLY!!!) Breaking Dawn: “I’d had more than my fair share of near-death experiences; it wasn’t something you ever really got used to.”

    and I can’t help myself ^^’ another Stephenie Meyer one – I’ll stop using her books after this one I promise!! (not much of a promise since there AREN’t anymore [well besides her story in Prom NIght’s From Hell….] oh geez im rambling.. ANYWAYS) from the HOst: “The healer’s name was Fords Deep Waters.”

    I just love his name it amuses me xD

    from It’s Kind Of A Funny Story by Ned Vizzini: “It’s so hard to talk when you want to kill yourself.”

    from A Man Called Blessed by Ted Dekker: “David Ben Solomon, leader of the Temple Mount Advocates, stood among the smoldering bodies, glued to the ground.” That one’s intense.

    from Skin by Ted Dekker: “When the rain isn’t so much falling – be it in bucket loads or like cats and dogs – but rather slamming into the car like an avalanche of stone, you know it’s time to pull over.”

    I love Renesmee! It should definitely be continued from her point of view!! at first I was a bit skeptical about her name though… haha mainly because when you havent slept in like 32 hours and you keep trying to read her name…. haha it’s interesting.

    I still hope that Stephenie continues the series no matter whose pov it’s from though cause not only do I want to find out what happens between Renesmee and Jacob, I’m curious about other things as well like, Who all turned into werewolves? There are 17 of them now!!?!?!?!?!?! It drives me crazy not knowing these things xD

  27. Haha lol. People writing longs posts here isn’t exactly uncommon… as you are about witness.
    {{BD spoilers}}
    Renesmee was downright awesome. 😀 I don’t know why some people complain about her name. But I *do* sort of wish that at least some part of her name would have ‘Elizabeth’ in it, you know, after Edward’s (biological) mother.
    And, I’m sorry, but I was unhappy with Jacob imprinting on Renesmee. I absolutely loved how the moment was written but it’s so… unrealistic. Of course, how can a fantasy novel be realistic? That’s right, there are many parts of it that can’t, but Jacob and Renesmee as a couple aren’t very believable for the reader. He makes more sense as an older brother or a godfather or something like that. With Quil and Claire it I get it, but Jacob and Bella’s DAUGHTER?? Sighhh. It’s just really hard to accept.
    I also wished there were some father/daughter moments between Edward and Nessie. That would have been so cute.
    I loved Breaking Dawn–I seriously did–but after Bella got vamped There were some parts where I felt like I didn’t even know her. I know that this vampire-Bella, but Stephenie Meyer could have at least had her trip *after* jumping out the window. I also wish there would have been more talk about why she’s resistant to human blood. I think it’s because of how repulsed she was by it in human life.
    And, of course, an epic battle against the Volturi. Garrett was so awesome. And I’d like to see Jane shocked, literally, by Kate.
    Well, whatever happens I think SM should continue–I wouldn’t mind Jacob/Nessie, because then I’d conveniently get used to them. Maybe all the werewolves’ stories… that’d be awesome. I also REALLY want to know more about the Denali coven, the Volturi Guard and all the other vampires mentioned. I’m sure their stories are as dramatic as the Cullens.
    {{End BD spoilers}}
    Well, there’s my Breaking Dawn rant… sorry, needed to get it out of my system… This is quite possibly the longest post I have ever written…


  28. My three favorites would have to be:

    “Seven o’clock on a Monday morning, five hundred years after the End of the World, and the goblins had been at the cellar again.”

    -Runemarks, Joanne Harris

    “Look, I didn’t want to be a half-blood.”

    – Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 1: The Lightning Thief, Rick Riordan

    “The last thing I wanted to do on my summer break was blow up another school.”

    Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 4: Battle of the Labyrinth

  29. Haha, I also love that last quote—the first line from Battle of the Labyrinth. Percy Jackson’s awesome. 🙂

  30. About Breaking Dawn comments said earlier…((BD SPOILER!!!))

    So, someone gave a list of reasons for why they hate Bella…and one of those reasons was because she didn’t get rid of the baby, even though it was hurting everyone else.

    But I don’t think you realize how much that would hurt HER. She loved the baby inside of her, more than anything else in the world. And most pregnant woman feel that way. She even said herself- “I can’t hurt him any more than I can pick up a gun and shoot you (Jacob).” If she killed the baby, it would feel like killing herself, and a part of her would die inside.

    It’s not so simple as to simple abort it. She loves it more than anything else in the world, and she’d be in much worse pain if she had to get rid of it.

    Anyways…one thing that I would have changed is, I would have made Leah imprint on someone, or at least find someone else. I feel so bad for her!! It’s not fair that she has to wallow in misery and pain forever!! Noo!! 🙁

    And I sorta wish that Jacob never imprinted on Renesmee. Yeah, he would need to imprint on SOMEONE, but I wish it had been someone else, ANYONE other than Bella’s OWN DAUGHTER!! ugh. Even Lizzie would have been great. 🙁

    And I wish there was a fight with the volturri at the end…

    Ah well. The rest was great. I loved the book! XD


  31. I didn’t read all the other comments, but my favorite first line that doesn’t have to do with cat vomit is probably from the first book of the Mediator Series by Meg Cabot:

    They told me there’d be palm trees.

    I’m not really sure why I like it so much, but I do.

  32. one of my favorite first lines, well it’s actually two from the novel THE YEAR OF DISAPPEARANCES by SUSAN HUBBARD
    it is “It was the year of disapperances. The honeybees were the first to go.” I dont know why i like these two lines. I just do.

  33. Yeah I wish Jacob would have imprinted on Lizzie. She was pretty cool, even though she made such a minor appearance.
    I think the reason Stephenie made him imprint on Bella’s daughter was because they would be, pretty much, one big happy family. But I wish she would have found at least some different method to do such a thing! I mean, seriously.
    All the finales of my favorite book series I’ve read are, pretty much, flawless. Breaking Dawn, sadly, isn’t. I think the book can be redeemed, though, if SM writes a sequel–which I totally think she should.

  34. (wow lots of bd talk here)

    i have alot of favorite first-lines from books so here are some of them:

    Twilight – Stephenie Meyer
    ‘I’d never given much thought to how I was going to die —- though I’d had reason enough in the last few months —- but even if I had, I would not have imagined it like this.’

    New Moon – Stephenie Meyer
    ‘I felt as if I was trapped in one of those terrifying nightmares, the one where you have to run, run till your lungs burst, but you can’t make your body move fast enough.’

    Eclipse – Stephenie Meyer
    ‘All our attempts at subterfuge had been in vain.’

    Breaking Dawn – Stephenie Meyer
    ‘I’d had more than my fair share of near-death experiences; it wasn’t something you ever really got used to.’

    – I like Stephenie’s way of starting a book because it starts with a pre-face that takes you staright into the center of the action without giving it away and the first line always gives you the impression something bad – but exciting – is about to or is happening. She also capitalizes the entire first line of every chapter to draw attention. –

    Vampire Accademy – Richelle Mead
    ‘I felt her before I heard her screams.’

    Frostbite – Richelle Mead
    ‘Things die. But they don’t always stay dead.’

    – Richelle’s style is quick but full of action that makes you wonder what’s going on. –

    Marked – P.C. Cast + Kristin Cast
    ‘Just when I thought my day couldn’t get any worse I saw the dead guy standing next to my locker.’

    – I found this starter really effective because it drew me in so I bought all three in the series that day but then after I started it I realised the first 4 chapters was all building the story and it got kinda boring to me (luckily I can’t start a book and not finish even if I hate it so I read it through and the story is one of my favorutes now, kinda like how everyone wants to or does skip over that big chunk in New Moon) –

  35. oh one more thing; all those books I listed are Vampire Romance stories (my favorite kind) if anyone wants/needs to find more in that (jonera no… gonera no (god i can’t spell it)…) type of books (there, there’s my ‘i give up’ solution)

  36. Um I think it’s spelled genre. LoL, that’s okay. I got what you meant though. I gotta say that The Tale Of Two Cities by Charles Dickens has a genius first line. It’s like hecka long, but it gets you thinking. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness,it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity,it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way-” It’s just wow. That my friends, is why it has become a classic.

  37. i’m lucky in the way that my mom is just as obsessed as reading as i am. Her rule is i just can’t spend my life in my room though, so she asks me to go tan and read our books outside (she loved Breaking Dawn just like me and it’s funny because b4 it had come out when she first started the series she had a negitive veiw on bella changing because she couldn’t have children if she wanted to, god it’s like she knew what was going to happen) I’m also unlucky because I don’t get to read at all at my dad’s house, he doesn’t like reading because he had trouble with it when he was young so he doesn’t get why I love it and he’s trying to force us to be a family by forcing family activities (movies, activities, boating, eating-out ect.) and not letting us go alone anywhere and making us do chores together which his whole attempt is stupid because he can’t expect a 14-year-old girl, and her 12 and 7 year old brothers to get along (especially since the 12-year-old’s past-time is being loud outside his sister’s bedroom early in the morning and pestering her the rest of the day whenever possible, not to mention that everytime I complain it automatically becomes MY fault and am told I should get up sooner or ignore it or stop trying to cause problems in this family or on the rare occasion he may tell them to stop but they’ll just start 5 mins. later anyways because there’ s no punishment for them). even more annoying is when i need a new book at chapters i get to go in for like 5 min. and if i don’t pick by 10 then I have to choose on the spot because we’re leaving; i’m like, that’s not how it works! I usually go there, browse, look over a variety and compare, gab a startbucks latte, read the book I choose for awhile, compare prices, see how much I have, get my mom to give me money for an extra book or two, and then, near closing time/ around 2 hours later, I go buy my book/books and go read them at home, that’s how it should work! but no, my dad would have nothing to do in a book-store/ coffe shop except hover around me annoyingly and never leave me alone! (funny how he always trusts my brothers and never trusts me; i mean, they’re the problem children, not me, i’m the quiet one that tries to avoid the other 2 at all costs)

  38. “Just after six in the evening, with the January sky glowering through the windows like a new bruise, Lily decided to throw Uncle Max in the closet.” ~ Lily’s Ghosts

    It’s not technically the first line, because there’s a one-page prologue-like-thing before it, but it’s the first line of Chapter One, and I’ve always thought of it as the first line. The “new bruise” part kind of makes me think of the “cat vomit” line in Uglies.

  39. My favorite line (Or actually paragraph, I suppose…I can’t pick just one line out of it, it just fits so perfectly together) would probably have to be this one…From Ray Bradbury’s Fahernheit 451…

    “‘What is there about fire that’s so lovely? No matter what age we are, what draws us to it?” Beatty blew out the flame and lit it again. “It’s perpetual motion; the thing man wanted to invent but never did. Or almost perpetual motion. If you let it go on, it’d burn our lifetimes out. What is fire? It’s a mystery. Scientists give us gobbledegook about friction and molecules. But they don’t really know. Its real beauty is that it destroys responsibility and consequences. A problem gets too burndensome, then into the furnace with it. Now, Montag, you’re a burden. And fire will lift you off my shoulders, clean, quick, sure; nothing to rot later. Antibiotic, aesthetic, practical.'”

  40. Ooh wait, never mind….That’s not a first line, I didn’t notice that part, I’m so tired right now, lol….Still a great one though.

  41. I have two.
    My favorite is from Gail Carson Levine (she wrote Ella Enchanted) but this is from one of the princess stories. It goes something like this…

    She was the ugliest baby ever seen.

    That just cracks me up!

    And then Pride and Prejudice, “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

    There are a lot of lists on the web. I liked this one

    cause it includes a couple of different genres.

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