I don’t think the first line of a book has to be the absolute best. Truthfully, how many people are reading ONLY the first line and then giving up on a book? I do think a great first line can hook a reader who might’ve been on the fence though. And regardless, I just thought it’d be a fun idea to look at the opening lines of some different books… and have a fight to the death! Just kidding about the “fight to the death” part, but you can tell me your favorite in the comments :-P
I mostly chose these books randomly from my Goodreads ‘read’ shelf in order to keep it interesting, so this isn’t meant to be a top ten list or anything. But these are all books I enjoyed with perhaps the exception of one that is simply out of my genre comfort zone. Anyway, here are ten opening lines for you all to check out!
The Root by Na’amen Gobert Tilahun
The door had barely opened into the lemon-yellow infirmary before Nurse Dan was hurrying over to help him onto a cot, resignation clear on his round, pink face, the skunk of weed thick as always.
Doom Sayer by Clara Coulson
The enemy’s base is full of chickens.
Rushed by Brian Harmon
Eric Fortrell lived a perfectly unremarkable life until he happened to have a very extraordinary dream.
This Dark Endeavor by Kenneth Oppel
We found the monster on a rocky ledge high above the lake.
Beckoning Blood by Daniel de Lorne
The pig refused to die.
Chase the Dark by Annette Marie
Attempted murder was not how Piper liked to start her afternoon.
Wasteland King by Lilith Saintcrow
The assassin and the red-haired girl burst onto the shuttered, dark fairway, and Crenn almost thought they had a shot at escaping unseen—until the shadows at the far end, under the Ferris wheel’s spidery bulk, birthed a cold gleam and clawed silvershod hoofbeats rang on packed dirt.
A Faerie’s Revenge by Rachel Morgan
The ship rolls from side to side as it rises and falls on the swell of heaving waves.
The Consumption of Magic by TJ Klune
Once upon a time in the Kingdom of Verania, there was a kickass boy born in the slums of the City of Lockes.
Mongrels by Stephen Graham Jones
My grandfather used to tell me he was a werewolf.
If we’re gonna choose favorites… I’m gonna have to go with the chickens :-P But I will say that the opening line of Mongrels somehow really portrays the feel of the book, and I like that. Let me know your favorite of these in the comments or if any have got you interested in the books!