Archives for first page

Great Opening Paragraph 91… ‘Before I Go to Sleep’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“The bedroom is strange. Unfamiliar. I don’t know where I am, how I came to be here. I don’t know how I’m going to get home.” ‘Before I Go To Sleep’ by SJ Watson Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘True Grit’ by Charles Portis  ‘Sea Glass’ by Anita Shreve  ‘I’ll Take You There’ by Joyce Carol Oates  And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: Does this make you want more? BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP by @SJ_Watson #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Vw via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 90… ‘Queen Camilla’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, stood smoking a cheap cigarette on the back doorstep of Number Sixteen Hell Close. It was a cold afternoon in late summer. Occasionally she turned to watch her husband, Charles, the Prince of Wales, clattering the luncheon pots in the red washing-up bowl he’d bought on impulse that morning from the ‘Everything A Pound’ shop. He had borne the bowl home and presented it to her as though it were a precious religious artefact plundered from a sacked city.” ‘Queen Camilla’ by Sue Townsend  Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘In Cold Blood’ by Truman Capote  ‘The Collector’ by John Fowles  ‘Lolita’ by Vladimir Nabokov  And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: Does this make you want more? QUEEN CAMILLA by Sue Townsend #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Vr via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 89… ‘The Children Act’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“London. Trinity term one week old. Implacable June weather. Fiona Maye, a High Court judge, at home on Sunday evening, supine on a chaise longue, staring past her stockinged feet towards the end of the room, towards a partial view of recessed bookshelves by the fireplace and, to one side, by a tall window, a tiny Renoir lithograph of a bather, bought by her thirty years ago for fifty pounds. Probably a fake. Below it, centred on a round walnut table, a blue vase. No memory of how she came by it. Nor when she last put flowers in it. The fireplace not lit in a year. Blackened raindrops falling irregularly into the grate with a ticking sound against balled-up yellowing newsprint. A Bokhara rug spread on wide polished floorboards. Looming at the edge of vision, a baby grand piano bearing silver-framed family photos on its deep black whine. On the floor by the chaise lounge, within her reach, the draft of a judgment. And Fiona was on her back, wishing all this stuff at the bottom of the sea.” ‘The Children Act’ by Ian McEwan  Amazon Read my reviews of The Children Act and Nutshell. Try one of these 1st paras
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 88… ‘To Have and Have Not’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“You know how it is there early in the morning in Havana with the bums still asleep against the walls of the buildings; before even the ice wagons come by with ice for the bars? Well, we came across the square from the dock to the Pearl of San Francisco Café to get coffee and there was only one beggar awake in the square and he was getting a drink out of the fountain. But when we got inside the café and sat down, there were three of them waiting for us.” ‘To Have and Have Not’ by Ernest Hemingway Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Animal Farm’ by George Orwell  ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding  ‘Possession’ by AS Byatt  And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: Does this make you want more? Hemingway’s TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Vm via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 87… ‘Time Will Darken It’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“In order to pay off an old debt that someone else had contracted, Austin King had said yes when he knew that he ought to have said no, and now at five o’clock of a July afternoon he saw the grinning face of trouble everywhere he turned. The house was full of strangers from Mississippi; within an hour, friends and neighbours invited to an evening party would begin ringing the doorbell; and his wife (whom he loved) was not speaking to him.” ‘Time Will Darken It’ by William Maxwell Amazon Click here to read my review of Time Will Darken It Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Such a Long Journey’ by Rohinton Mistry  ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’ by Mark Haddon  ‘Death in Summer’ by William Trevor  And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: A 1st para which makes you want more: TIME WILL DARKEN IT by William Maxwell http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Vh Chosen by @SandraDanby #novels
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 85… ‘The Pelican Brief’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“He seemed incapable of creating such chaos, but much of what he saw below could be blamed on him. And that was fine. He was ninety-one, paralyzed, strapped in a wheelchair and hooked to oxygen. His second stroke seven years ago had almost finished him off, but Abraham Rosenberg was still alive and even with tubes in his nose his legal stick was bigger than the other eight. He was the only legend remaining on the Court, and the fact that he was still breathing irritated most of the mob below.” ‘The Pelican Brief’ by John Grisham  Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Diary of an Ordinary Woman’ by Margaret Forster ‘To Have and Have Not’ by Ernest Hemingway ‘Bel Canto’ by Ann Patchett And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: THE PELICAN BRIEF by @JohnGrisham #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1V5 via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 84… ‘Lucky You’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“On the afternoon of November 25, a woman named JoLayne Lucks drove to the Grab N’Go minimart in Grange, Florida, and purchased spearmint Certs, unwaxed dental floss and one ticket for the state Lotto. JoLayne Lucks played the same numbers she’d played every Saturday for five years: 17-19-22-14-27-30.” ‘Lucky You’ by Carl Hiaasen Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘These Foolish Things’ by Deborah Moggach ‘Super-Cannes’ by JG Ballard ‘Herzog’ by Saul Bellow And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: LUCKY YOU by @Carl_Hiaasen #books https://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Uw via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love.

Great Opening Paragraph 83… ‘The Old Man and the Sea’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream, and he had gone eighty-four days now without taking a fish. In the first forty days a boy had been with him. But after forty days without a fish the boy’s parents had told him that the old man was now definitely and finally salao, which is the worst form of unlucky, and the boy had gone at their orders in another boat which caught three good fish the first week. It made the boy sad to see the old man come in each day with his skiff empty and he always went down to help him carry either the coiled lines or the gaff and harpoon and the sail that was furled around the mast. The sail was patched with flour sacks and, furled, it looked like the flag of permanent defeat.” ‘The Old Man and the Sea’ by Ernest Hemingway Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘I’ll Take You There’ by Joyce Carol Oates ‘The Impressionist’ by Hari Kunzru ‘That They May Face the Rising Sun’ by John McGahern And if you’d like to tweet a link to
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 82… ‘Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“While Pearl Tull was dying, a funny thought occurred to her. It twitched her lips and rustled her breath, and she felt her son lean forward from where he kept watch by her bed. “Get…” she told him. “You should have got…” ‘Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant’ by Anne Tyler Amazon Read my reviews of Anne Tyler’s A Spool of Blue Thread and Vinegar Girl. Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘The Philosopher’s Pupil’ by Iris Murdoch  ‘Mara and Dann’ by Doris Lessing  ‘Affinity’ by Sarah Waters 112 And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: DINNER AT THE HOMESICK RESTAURANT by Anne Tyler #amwriting http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Tb via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 81… ‘Fair Exchange’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“In her youth Louise Daudry, née Geuze, had committed a wicked and unusual crime. At that time, autumn 1792, she wanted money very badly, so she put aside her knowledge that what she was doing was wrong and would hurt others. She told herself that virtue was a luxury the poor could not afford. She let herself be persuaded that no one would ever find out.” ‘Fair Exchange’ by Michèle Roberts Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World’ by Haruki Murakami ‘Possession’ by AS Byatt ‘A Bouquet of Barbed Wire’ by Andrea Newman And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: FAIR EXCHANGE by Michèle Roberts #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1Ob via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 80… ‘Original Sin’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“For a temporary shorthand-typist to be present at the discovery of a corpse on the first day of a new assignment, if not unique, is sufficiently rare to prevent its being regarded as an occupational hazard.”  ‘Original Sin’ by PD James Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘The Rainmaker’ by John Grisham  ‘To Have and Have Not’ by Ernest Hemingway  ‘A Bouquet of Barbed Wire’ by Andrea Newman  And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: ORIGINAL SIN by PD James #amwriting http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1C3 via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 78… ‘Divisadero’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“By our grandfather’s cabin, on the high ridge, opposite a slope of buckeye trees, Claire sits on her horse, wrapped in a thick blanket. She has camped all night and lit a fire in the hearth of that small structure our ancestor built more than a generation ago, and which he lived in like a hermit or some creature, when he first came to this country. He was a self-sufficient bachelor who eventually owned all the land he looked down onto. He married lackadaisically when he was forty, had one son, and left him this farm along the Petaluma road.” ‘Divisadero’ by Michael Ondaatje  Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Tipping the Velvet’ by Sarah Waters ‘Back When We Were Grownups’ by Anne Tyler ‘Far From the Madding Crowd’ by Thomas Hardy And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: DIVISADERO by Michael Ondaatje #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1KL via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 77… ‘Vanishing Acts’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“I was six years old the first time I disappeared. My father was working on a magic act for the annual Christmas show at the senior centre, and his assistant, the receptionist who had a real gold tooth and false eyelashes as thick as spiders, got the flu. I was fully prepared to beg my father to be part of the act, but he asked, as if I were the one who would be doing him a favour.” ‘Vanishing Acts’ by Jodi Picoult Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘The Long Drop’ by Denise Mina  ‘The Guest Cat’ by Takashi Hiraide  ‘The Secret History’ by Donna Tartt And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: VANISHING ACTS by Jodi Picoult #writing http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1GQ via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 75… ‘Diary of an Ordinary Woman’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“26 November 1914. Father said if I want to keep a diary I must begin it on New Year’s Day. He said no one starts a diary in November. But New Year’s Day is five weeks away and I do not want to wait. I don’t see why I should either. Why should diaries have to start on 1st January. It is tidy, I admit, and I am a tidy person, but that is all.” ‘Diary of an Ordinary Woman’ by Margaret Forster Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Affinity’ by Sarah Waters ‘A Month in the Country’ by JL Carr ‘Armadillo’ by William Boyd And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: DIARY OF AN ORDINARY WOMAN by Margaret Forster#bookshttp://wp.me/p5gEM4-1GKvia @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 73… ‘Norwegian Wood’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“I was 37 then, strapped in my seat as the huge 747 plunged through dense cloud cover on approach to Hamburg airport. Cold November rains drenched the earth, lending everything the gloomy air of a Flemish landscape: the ground crew in waterproofs, a flag atop a squat airport building, a BMW billboard. So – Germany again.” ‘Norwegian Wood’ by Haruki Murakami Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Brighton Rock’ by Graham Greene ‘In Cold Blood’ by Truman Capote ‘The Sense of an Ending’ by Julian Barnes And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: NORWEGIAN WOOD by Haruki Murakami #books via @SandraDanby http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1xx
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 72… ‘Nineteen Minutes’ #amwriting #FirstPara

By the time you read this, I hope to be dead. You can’t undo something that’s happened; you can’t take back a word that’s already been said out loud. You’ll think about me and wish that you had been able to talk me out of this. You’ll try to figure out what would have been the one right thing to say, to do. I guess I should tell you, Don’t blame yourself; this isn’t your fault, but that would be a lie. We both know that I didn’t get here by myself. ‘Nineteen Minutes’ by Jodi Picoult Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Sacred Hearts’ by Sarah Dunant ‘The L-Shaped Room’ By Lynn Reid Banks ‘Bel Canto’ by Ann Patchett And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: NINETEEN MINUTES by @jodipicoult #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1xt via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 71… ‘Mara and Dann’ #amwriting #FirstPara

The scene that the child, then the girl, then the young woman tried so hard to remember was clear enough in its beginnings. She had been hustled – sometimes carried, sometimes pulled along by the hand – through a dark night, nothing to be seen but stars, and then she was pushed into a room and told, Keep quiet, and the people who had brought her disappeared. She had not taken notice of their faces, what they were, she was too frightened, but they were her people, the People, she knew that. The room was nothing she had known. It was a square, built of large blocks of rock. She was inside one of the rock houses. She had seen them all her life. The rock houses were where they lived, the Rock People, not her people, who despised them. She had often see the Rock People walking along the roads, getting quickly out of the way when they saw the People; but a dislike of them that she had been taught made it hard to look much at them. She was afraid of them, and thought them ugly. ‘Mara and Dann’ by Doris Lessing Amazon Try one of these 1st
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 70… ‘Hard-Boiled Wonderland…’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“The elevator continued its impossibly slow ascent. Or at least I imagined it was ascent. There was no telling for sure: it was so slow that all sense of direction simply vanished. It could have been going down for all I knew, or maybe it wasn’t moving at all. But let’s assume it was going up. Merely a guess. Maybe I’d gone up twelve stories, then down three. Maybe I’d circled the glove. How would I know?” ‘Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World’ by Haruki Murakami Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Slaughterhouse 5’ by Kurt Vonnegut Jr ‘Freedom’ by Jonathan Franzen ‘Lolita’ by Vladimir Nabokov   And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: HARD-BOILED WONDERLAND AND THE END OF THE WORLD by Haruki Murakami #books http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1xl via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great Opening Paragraph 69… ‘I’ll Take You There’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“In those days in the early Sixties we were not women yet but girls. This was, without irony, perceived as our advantage.” ‘I’ll Take You There’ by Joyce Carol Oates Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Tipping the Velvet’ by Sarah Waters ‘The Big Sleep’ by Raymond Chandler ‘Family Album’ by Penelope Lively And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: I’LL TAKE YOU THERE by Joyce Carol Oates #books via @SandraDanby http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1xi
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Great opening paragraph 68… ‘A Change of Climate’ #amwriting #FirstPara

“One day when Kit was ten years old, a visitor cut her wrists in the kitchen. She was just beginning on this cold, difficult form of death when Kit came in to get a glass of milk.” ‘A Change of Climate’ by Hilary Mantel Amazon Try one of these 1st paras & discover a new author:- ‘Dance Dance Dance’ by Haruki Murakami ‘The God of Small Things’ by Arundhati Roy ‘In Cold Blood’ by Truman Capote 12 And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: A great 1st para: A CHANGE OF CLIMATE by Hilary Mantel #books via @SandraDanby http://wp.me/p5gEM4-10z
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.