Books With Our Favorite First Lines

Liste du mois
Juin 2023 (see all)
Description
First impressions are powerful, and the first lines of the books we read can pack quite a punch. Our List of the Month this June is devoted to the books with our favorite first lines. Each participant may vote on ten titles. Please do not downvote titles, as judgment in these matters is subjective.
1
80,947 membres
1,371 critiques
½ 4.4
25 Members
rosalita, anglemark, LadyUndomiel, magnetgrrl, mldg, dewasus1, lizzy50usa, saskia17, amanda4242, merrystar, victoriapeak, sturlington, kleh, susanbooks, michigantrumpet, ahef1963, AbigailAdams26, barefootsong, asiralh, Boand, steller0707, teesamai, loulourevisited, PeanutNoir, PureChaos
Explications
amanda4242: "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife."
2
94,779 membres
1,192 critiques
½ 4.3
3
20,825 membres
614 critiques
4.2
4
36,798 membres
456 critiques
3.9
17 Members
LadyUndomiel, paradoxosalpha, lahochstetler, dewasus1, PitcherBooks, merrystar, kleh, perennialreader, Tess_W, Boand, CharlesTheB, TMCTX, Tosta, HH_Library, loulourevisited, PeanutNoir, PureChaos
Explications
paradoxosalpha: 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—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
5
82,236 membres
1,274 critiques
4.2
16 Members
lorax, Cecilturtle, paradoxosalpha, kleo, sturlington, souloftherose, susanbooks, katemcangus, al.vick, ahef1963, AntonioGallo, asiralh, steller0707, CharlesTheB, tekitora, PureChaos
Explications
al.vick: "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen."
AntonioGallo: Phrases such as "Big Brother is watching you" and "doublethink" have entered the lexicon and are often used to describe similar situations in modern times.
6
38,917 membres
723 critiques
4.2
16 Members
LadyUndomiel, paradoxosalpha, yoyogod, abbottthomas, elenchus, Porua, al.vick, ahef1963, kristilabrie, timetunnel, SandraArdnas, asiralh, steller0707, DoomLuz, PeanutNoir, PureChaos
Explications
al.vick: "Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun."
7
25,528 membres
258 critiques
4
16 Members
scampus, LadyUndomiel, sharder, lizzy50usa, saskia17, amanda4242, masterdeski, merrystar, sturlington, EMS_24, al.vick, ahef1963, ManWithAnAgenda, asiralh, steller0707, slimikin
Explications
ManWithAnAgenda: There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it
8
24,814 membres
527 critiques
4.1
9
54,095 membres
1,002 critiques
4
10
38,586 membres
632 critiques
4.1
13 Members
Cecilturtle, LadyUndomiel, lahochstetler, dewasus1, saskia17, Cecrow, PitcherBooks, kleh, perennialreader, katemcangus, Tess_W, CharlesTheB, HH_Library
Explications
perennialreader: Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.
11
9,228 membres
294 critiques
4.1
12
2,334 membres
39 critiques
4
12 Members
anglemark, pitjrw, abbottthomas, dewasus1, elenchus, victoriapeak, kleh, RBeffa, susanbooks, Boand, steller0707, loulourevisited
Explications
susanbooks: The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.
13
9,822 membres
433 critiques
3.9
10 Members
rosalita, pitjrw, sturlington, Porua, ahef1963, msemmag, ManWithAnAgenda, asiralh, steller0707, DoomLuz
Explications
ManWithAnAgenda: No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream.
14
23,110 membres
379 critiques
3.9
9 Members
hipdeep, kleo, GuyMontag, Cecrow, elenchus, souloftherose, vwinsloe, timetunnel, Mguod
Explications
Cecrow: "The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel."
15
15,148 membres
138 critiques
½ 3.5
8 Members
paradoxosalpha, pitjrw, elenchus, kleh, susanbooks, ahef1963, elahrairah, PureChaos
Explications
susanbooks: A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of communism.
16
39,621 membres
961 critiques
4
8 Members
Aquila, Cecilturtle, LadyUndomiel, dewasus1, masterdeski, TMCTX, Tosta, PureChaos
Explications
Aquila: "It was a dark and stormy night."
17
19,023 membres
326 critiques
3.9
7 Members
scampus, dewasus1, saskia17, Tess_W, al.vick, AbigailAdams26, barefootsong
Explications
AbigailAdams26: “All children, except one, grow up."
18
44,537 membres
697 critiques
4.2
6 Members
lorax, pitjrw, kleo, perennialreader, SandraArdnas, CharlesTheB
Explications
SandraArdnas: Many years later as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice. (...) The world was so recent that many things lacked names
19
24,004 membres
213 critiques
4.1
6 Members
paradoxosalpha, magnetgrrl, elenchus, AntonioGallo, barefootsong, slimikin
Explications
paradoxosalpha: When I had journeyed half of our life's way, I found myself within a shadowed forest, for I had lost the path that does not stray.
AntonioGallo: I prefer "Inferno" since it is known for its exploration of moral and ethical issues. Dante uses the sins and punishments of the various characters to comment on the nature of sin, justice, and divine retribution. This gives the book a timeless quality that continues to resonate with readers today. Life, sometimes, is just like Inferno
20
28,189 membres
504 critiques
4
6 Members
lahochstetler, susanbooks, msemmag, ManWithAnAgenda, Tosta, HH_Library
Explications
ManWithAnAgenda: It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York.
21
5,571 membres
350 critiques
4.1
5 Members
lizzy50usa, souloftherose, asiralh, Tosta, slimikin
Explications
souloftherose: "I could have become a mass murderer after I hacked my governor module..."
22
20,436 membres
558 critiques
4.1
5 Members
lahochstetler, sturlington, msemmag, teesamai, jsclar
Explications
sturlington: The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we came to understand the gravity of our situation.
23
18,560 membres
1,266 critiques
4.1
5 Members
saskia17, flying_monkeys, msjudy, Tosta, HH_Library
Explications
saskia17: The circus arrives without warning.
24
44,140 membres
707 critiques
4.1
5 Members
rosalita, elenchus, ahef1963, SandraArdnas, Tosta
Explications
SandraArdnas: All this happened, more or less.
25
23,883 membres
988 critiques
4.2
5 Members
chin2chin, masterdeski, Tess_W, al.vick, HH_Library
Explications
al.vick: Prologue: "People disappear all the time."
26
36,254 membres
1,025 critiques
4.2
27
35,534 membres
545 critiques
3.8
5 Members
Cecrow, CharlesTheB, Tosta, HH_Library, loulourevisited
Explications
Cecrow: "Call me Ishmael."
28
24,937 membres
532 critiques
½ 4.3
5 Members
paradoxosalpha, merrystar, al.vick, ahef1963, PureChaos
Explications
al.vick: "This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it."
29
12,557 membres
260 critiques
4.1
4 Members
anglemark, msemmag, CharlesTheB, kay.emme
Explications
anglemark: "You are about to begin reading Italo Calvino's new novel, 'If on a winter's night a traveler'."
30
18,232 membres
1,248 critiques
½ 4.3
4 Members
al.vick, timetunnel, HH_Library, PatrickBenner
Explications
al.vick: "I'm pretty much fucked."
31
5,244 membres
99 critiques
3.9
4 Members
otori, kleh, perennialreader, loulourevisited
Explications
otori: “I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills.”
perennialreader: I had a Farm in Africa.
32
10,772 membres
125 critiques
3.9
4 Members
PitcherBooks, EMS_24, ManWithAnAgenda, Boand
Explications
ManWithAnAgenda: Under certain circumstances there are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.
33
21,707 membres
419 critiques
3.8
4 Members
amanda4242, susanbooks, barefootsong, slimikin
Explications
amanda4242: "No one who had ever seen Catherine Morland in her infancy would have supposed her born to be an heroine."
34
22,865 membres
495 critiques
3.8
3 Members
scampus, ianreads, sturlington
Explications
sturlington: The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed.
35
480 membres
12 critiques
3.8
4 Members
paradoxosalpha, magnetgrrl, yoyogod, elenchus
Explications
yoyogod: The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.
36
4,522 membres
185 critiques
4.1
3 Members
Aquila, msemmag, asiralh
Explications
Aquila: "In the myriadic year of our lord—the ten thousandth year of the King Undying, the kindly Prince of Death!—Gideon Nav packed her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and she escaped from the House of the Ninth."
37
13,526 membres
207 critiques
½ 4.3
4 Members
scampus, elenchus, susanbooks, ManWithAnAgenda
Explications
susanbooks: Here is Edward Bear, coming downstairs now, bump, bump, bump, on the back of his head, behind Christopher Robin.
38
15,982 membres
384 critiques
4
3 Members
Aquila, msemmag, DoomLuz
Explications
Aquila: "I’ll make my report as if I told a story, for I was taught as a child on my homeworld that Truth is a matter of the imagination."
39
40,122 membres
386 critiques
4
3 Members
anglemark, sharder, loulourevisited
Explications
anglemark: μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος / οὐλομένην, ἣ μυρί᾽ Ἀχαιοῖς ἄλγε᾽ ἔθηκε
40
36,302 membres
743 critiques
4.1
3 Members
sharder, barefootsong, Mark.Milton
Explications
barefootsong: "Lyra and her dæmon moved through the darkening hall, taking care to keep to one side, out of sight of the kitchen."
41
3,218 membres
60 critiques
4
3 Members
lorax, anglemark, Boand
Explications
anglemark: "It was the day my grandmother exploded."
42
35,598 membres
507 critiques
3.9
3 Members
Cecilturtle, Boand, CharlesTheB
Explications
Cecilturtle: Aujourd'hui, maman est morte. Ou peut-être hier, je ne sais pas.
43
11,168 membres
182 critiques
4.2
3 Members
Cecilturtle, kleh, susanbooks
Explications
susanbooks: For a long time I used to go to bed early.
44
5,109 membres
147 critiques
4
3 Members
anglemark, kristilabrie, msemmag
Explications
kristilabrie: "Have you ever tasted a Whitstable oyster?"
45
5,201 membres
105 critiques
½ 4.5
3 Members
hipdeep, EerierIdyllMeme, lahochstetler
Explications
EerierIdyllMeme: On the copyright page: "This is a very dull page. What is on the next page?"
46
11,318 membres
157 critiques
4.1
3 Members
saskia17, PitcherBooks, merrystar
Explications
saskia17: Everything starts somewhere, though many physicists disagree.
47
5,790 membres
75 critiques
3.9
2 Members
vwinsloe, SandraArdnas
Explications
vwinsloe: "If this typewriter can't do it, then fuck it, it can't be done."
48
17,536 membres
425 critiques
½ 4.3
3 Members
merrystar, sturlington, ManWithAnAgenda
Explications
sturlington: There was once a boy named Milo who didn't know what to do with himself—not just sometimes, but always.
49
6,402 membres
164 critiques
3.8
2 Members
scampus, merrystar
Explications
merrystar: If you want to find Cherry Tree Lane, all you have to do is ask the policeman at the crossroad.
50
3,746 membres
74 critiques
3.8
2 Members
SavvyScot, amanda4242
Explications
amanda4242: "to wound the autumnal city."
51
19,181 membres
346 critiques
4
2 Members
saskia17, DoomLuz
Explications
saskia17: Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board.
52
20,752 membres
276 critiques
4.1
2 Members
msjudy, PeanutNoir
Explications
PeanutNoir: "Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show."
53
2,113 membres
22 critiques
4
2 Members
victoriapeak, RBeffa
Explications
RBeffa: I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills.
54
1,276 membres
82 critiques
½ 3.5
2 Members
LadyUndomiel, asiralh
Explications
asiralh: “Once upon a time on a small, watery, excitable planet called Earth, in a small, watery, excitable country called Italy, a soft-spoken, rather nice-looking young gentleman by the name of Enrico Fermi was born into a family so overprotective that he felt compelled to invent the atomic bomb.”
55
18,489 membres
309 critiques
3.8
2 Members
hipdeep, fvenez
Explications
hipdeep: No one would have believed, in the last years of the nineteenth century, that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were being scrutinized and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinize the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water.
56
10,314 membres
284 critiques
4
2 Members
rosalita, abbottthomas
Explications
abbottthomas: It was about eleven o'clock in the morning, mid October, with the sun not shining and a look of hard wet rain in the clearness of the foothills.
57
1,155 membres
22 critiques
3.9
2 Members
paradoxosalpha, SandraArdnas
Explications
paradoxosalpha: There were angels in the glass, two four six many of them, each one shuffling into his place in line like an alderman at the Lord Mayor's show.
58
52,206 membres
706 critiques
3.9
2 Members
tina1969, Tess_W
Explications
Tess_W: “I have just returned from a visit to my landlord – the solitary neighbour that I shall be troubled with.”
59
4,798 membres
115 critiques
3.8
2 Members
hipdeep, pitjrw
Explications
hipdeep: This is the saddest story I have ever heard.
60
1,419 membres
176 critiques
4.1
2 Members
otori, vwinsloe
Explications
vwinsloe: "He began to die when he was twenty-one, but tuberculosis is slow and sly and subtle."
61
684 membres
11 critiques
4.2
2 Members
anglemark, slimikin
Explications
anglemark: "My friend Hergal had killed himself again."
62
2,367 membres
35 critiques
3.8
2 Members
kleo, msjudy
Explications
msjudy: And then, after walking all day through a golden haze of humid warmth that gathered about him like fine wet fleece, Valentine came to a great ridge of outcropping white stone overlooking the city of Pidruid.
63
1,265 membres
37 critiques
3.8
2 Members
pitjrw, perennialreader
Explications
perennialreader: Take my camel, dear, said my aunt Dot, as she climbed down from this animal on her return from High Mass.
64
6,550 membres
171 critiques
3.9
2 Members
rosalita, katemcangus
Explications
rosalita: "A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which, to look ahead."
65
21,259 membres
217 critiques
½ 3.7
2 Members
Cecrow, CharlesTheB
Explications
Cecrow: "Once upon a time and a very good time it was there was a moocow coming down along the road and this moocow that was down along the road met a nicens little boy named baby tuckoo...."
66
78,752 membres
1,434 critiques
½ 4.4
2 Members
kleo, perennialreader
Explications
perennialreader: When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.
67
30,591 membres
453 critiques
4.1
68
19,383 membres
325 critiques
4.1
2 Members
paradoxosalpha, elenchus
Explications
paradoxosalpha: Tyler gets 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.
69
4,127 membres
83 critiques
4.2
2 Members
al.vick, SandraArdnas
Explications
al.vick: "This isn't at all what I expected. In 1985, by some sort of journalistic accident I was sent to Madagascar with Mark Carwardine to look for an almost extinct form of lemur called the aye-aye. None of the three of us had ever met before. I had never met Mark, Mark had never met me, and no one, apparently, had seen an aye-aye in years."
70
795 membres
35 critiques
4
2 Members
EerierIdyllMeme, CharlesTheB
Explications
EerierIdyllMeme: There once lived, at a series of temporary addresses across the United States of America, a traveling man of Indian origin, advancing years, and retreating mental powers, who, on account of his love for mindless television, had spent far too much of his life in the yellow light of tawdry motel rooms watching an excess of it, and had suffered a peculiar form of brain damage as a result.
71
1 utilisateur
2 Members
hipdeep, Tess_W
Explications
hipdeep: En arkhêi ên ho lógos, kaì ho lógos ên pròs tòn theón, kaì theòs ên ho lógos. | In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Tess_W: In the beginning was the Word.
72
18,826 membres
886 critiques
½ 4.3
2 Members
Tess_W, msjudy
Explications
msjudy: At dusk they fall from the sky.
73
4,759 membres
150 critiques
4
2 Members
Tess_W, al.vick
Explications
al.vick: "My name is Uhtred. I am the son of Uhtred, who was the son of Uhtred and his father was also called Uhtred."
74
7,566 membres
191 critiques
4.2
2 Members
saskia17, msemmag
Explications
saskia17: The unicorn lived in a lilac wood, and she lived all alone.
75
18,185 membres
451 critiques
3.9
Member
kristilabrie
Explications
kristilabrie: "In eighteenth century France there lived a man who was one of the most gifted and abominable personages in an era that knew no lack of gifted and abominable personages."
76
13,984 membres
247 critiques
4.1
Member
otori
Explications
otori: “Barrabas came to us by sea, the child Clara wrote in her delicate calligraphy. ”
77
13,884 membres
264 critiques
4
Member
Micheller7
Explications
Micheller7: “It was Wang Lung’s wedding day.” I have remembered this line for about 65 years.
78
12,609 membres
265 critiques
4
Member
dud5ers
79
12,549 membres
222 critiques
3.9
Member
sharder
80
12,240 membres
120 critiques
3.9
Member
EerierIdyllMeme
Explications
EerierIdyllMeme: It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on Earth has ever produced the expression "as pretty as an airport".
81
10,784 membres
141 critiques
4.1
Member
paradoxosalpha
Explications
paradoxosalpha: A screaming comes across the sky.
82
7,483 membres
326 critiques
3.9
Member
Archakr
Explications
Archakr: "Kell wore a very peculiar coat."
83
6,757 membres
197 critiques
3.9
Member
Moloch
Explications
Moloch: "Watch your step. Keep your wits about you; you will need them." It's the book that speaks directly to the reader; I was instantly hooked.
84
6,622 membres
125 critiques
½ 4.3
Member
perennialreader
Explications
perennialreader: So gorgeous was the spectacle on the May morning of 1910 when nine kings rode in the funeral of Edward VII of England that the crowd, waiting in hushed and black-clad awe, could not keep back gasps of admiration.
85
5,985 membres
97 critiques
3.9
Member
Yuki-Onna
Explications
Yuki-Onna: I often dream about the Dolphin Hotel.
86
4,551 membres
132 critiques
3.8
Member
Porua
Explications
Porua: In the first place, Cranford is in possession of the Amazons; all the holders of houses, above a certain rent, are women.
87
4,199 membres
232 critiques
4.2
Member
Brubow
Explications
Brubow: "Late one evening toward the end of March, a teenager picked up a double-bareled shotgun, walked into the forest, put the gun to someone else's forehead and pulled the trigger. This is the story of how we got there."
88
3,554 membres
89 critiques
3.9
Member
LibraryCin
Explications
LibraryCin: Three days before her death, my mother told me -- these weren't her last words, but they were pretty lose -- that my brother was still alive.
89
3,468 membres
132 critiques
½ 3.7
Member
PeanutNoir
Explications
PeanutNoir: "They threw me off the hay truck about noon."
90
2,518 membres
83 critiques
½ 3.7
Member
sinki
Explications
sinki: "Later, as he sat on his balcony eating the dog, Dr Robert Laing reflected on the unusual events that had taken place within this huge apartment building during the previous three months."
91
1,792 membres
39 critiques
4.2
Member
exhocforte
Explications
exhocforte: "It was the afternoon of my eighty-first birthday, and I was in bed with my catamite when Ali announced that the archbishop had come to see me."
92
546 membres
19 critiques
3.8
Member
abbottthomas
Explications
abbottthomas: Mr Salteena was an elderly man of 42 and was fond of asking peaple to stay with him.
93
486 membres
9 critiques
4.2
Member
barefootsong
Explications
barefootsong: "When I was nine years old, I hid under a table and heard my sister kill a king." This first line has stuck with me since I first read this in sixth grade.
94
342 membres
11 critiques
½ 3.7
Member
Aquila
Explications
Aquila: "When, suddenly, on an ordinary Wednesday, it seemed to Barney that the world tilted and ran downhill in all directions, he knew he was about to be haunted again."
95
246 membres
22 critiques
4
Member
AbigailAdams26
Explications
AbigailAdams26: Mr. C'Mere's first line: "Humans were diggers and buriers, the cat thought, like dogs." Zoë's first line: "I'd hoped for better, Henry's being a heart doctor. A job like that, you'd think he might actually have a heart."
96
101 membres
1 critique
4
Member
prosfilaes
Explications
prosfilaes: It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents—except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.
97
79 membres
2 critiques
½ 3.6
Member
EMS_24
Explications
EMS_24: 'Except for the man who thought Sarphatistraat was the most beautiful place in Europe, I have never known a more curious fellow than the 'bummer/ deadbeat/ .'' - "Behalve den man, die de Sarphatistraat de mooiste plek van Europa vond, heb ik nooit een wonderlijker kerel gekend dan den uitvreter."
98
19 membres
½ 4.3
Member
cpg
Explications
cpg: "Of the beasts of the field, and of the fishes of the sea, and of all foods that are acceptable in my sight you may eat, but not in the living room."
99
6 membres
Member
paulmdh
100
31,775 membres
565 critiques
4.1