So my writer friend Sharon and I were talking about great first lines of novels. This is a common topic among writers, because we’re always trying to come up with the greatest “hook,” or line, for our books. But she pointed out that every time she researches first lines (or famous first lines, hooks, etc.), it always lists the same ones, over and over. But surely fiction has some new ones! I’ll bet at least one book you read recently had a terrific first line. What are some of your favorites?
Sharon said this would be her submission:
“At this point in the story, Packard had never fallen in love, and didn’t trust what he’d heard of the lingo (forever, my darling, with all my heart, till the end of time, more than life itself, with every fiber of my being, oh my darling Clementine, etc.) It sounded out of control to him, and messy.”
— “Train” by Pete Dexter
I like some of the humorous ones I always remember. Love Susan Elizabeth Phillips:
“Phoebe Somerville outraged everyone by bringing a French poodle and a Hungarian lover to her father’s funeral.”
— “It Had To Be You,” Susan Elizabeth Phillips
What are some of your favorite first lines?