Post the first paragraph of your favorite book?


Aviallani
#1
My favorite book grabbed me from the first paragraph and got me to thinking that perhaps a good way to open people up to new reading is to post their own favorites. It could be enough to get everyone reading new material.... Hell I'd post the whole damned book of mine if I thought everyone would read it!

So here goes....

The book is The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973. In newspaper photos of missing girls from the seventies, most looked like me: white girls with mousy brown hair. This was before kids of all races and genders started appearing on milk cartons or in the daily mail. It was still back when people believed things like that didn't happen.
 
Haggis McBagpipe
#2
Just finished that book (Lovely Bones), great read!

Okay my all-time favourite:

Candide by Voltaire

There lived in Westphalia, at the country seat of Baron Thunder-ten-tronckh, a young lad blessed by nature with the most agreeable manners. You could read his character in his face. he combined sound judgement with unaffected simplicity; and that, I suppose, was why he was called Candide. The old family servants suspecrted that he was the son of the Baron's sister by a worthy gentleman of that neighbourhood, whom the young lady would never agree to marry because he could only claim seventy-one quarterings, the rest of his family tree having suffered from the ravages of time.
 
Diamond Sun
#3
Oh, I so wish I could find my book....The Power of One is outstanding. I will find it, and then post the first paragraph here...
 
LadyC
#4
I've got "Lovely Bones" on order at the book store. It was highly recommended by the woman who lent me "the five people you meet in heaven" by Mitch Albom. Wow! what an excellent story.

My favourite book (or one of them, at least) is Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

Quote:

It wasn't a very likely place for disappearances, at least at first glance. Mrs. Baird's was like a thousand other Highland bed-and-breakfast establishments in 1945; clean and quiet, with fading floral wallpaper, gleaming floors, and a coin-operated hot-water geyser in the lavatory. Mrs. Baird herself was squat and easy-going, and made no objection to Frank lining her tiny rose-sprigged parlour with the dozens of books and papers with which he always travelled.

 
Diamond Sun
#5
Lovely Bones is quite a good book. I was also hooked by the first paragraph. I also loved Outlander...and the following books. I think the Firey Cross is out in paperback now, so I might have to pick it up.

I'll find that book tonight...I will!!
 
Haggis McBagpipe
#6
Another favourite:

'A Fine Balance' by Rohinton Mistry

The morning express bloated with passengers slowed to a crawl, then lurched forward suddenly, as though to resume full speed. The train's brief deception jolted its riders. The bulge of humans hanging out of the doorway distended perilously, like a soap bubble at its limit.
 
Diamond Sun
#7
I finished A Fine Balance not too long ago. What a great read. Even if I can't actually find my book to post the paragraph, I'm getting to hear about all these other great books!!
 
Isengard
#8
Lovely bones, isn't it the book about the little girl that got raped/killed? If so, I loved that book, it's a really interesting concept!
 
LadyC
#9
Yes, that's the book.


Your post kinda sounds odd, though...
 
Isengard
#10
One book I'm reading right now is called Burglars can't be choosers by Lawrence Block. Nice story, nothing complicated here but still a good read!

Here's the first paragraph:

A handful of minutes after nine I hoisted my Bloomingdale's shopping bag and moved out of a doorway and into step with a tall blond fellow with a faintly equine cast to his face. He was carrying an attaché case that looked too thin to be of much use. Like a high-fashion model, you might say. His topcoat was one of those new plaid ones and his hair, a little longer than my own, had been cut a strand at a time...
 
Isengard
#11
But this one is my favorite story of all. I think I'm not the only one thinking that way...

When Mr. Bilbo Baggins of Bag End announced that he would shortly be celebrating his eleventy-first birthday with a party of special magnificience, there was much talk and excitement in Hobbiton...

That's a tough one, who knows it?
 
Diamond Sun
#12
I haven't read that book for ever.....thanks for reminding me. Lord of the rings trilogy, here I come...after I finish Crime and Punishment.
 
peapod
#13
Haggis comes up with the best threads! I also read the lovely bones, I liked the concept to, but I thought it got a little strange near the end...but it was a good read.

One of my most favorites, although not the opening paragraph, but on the page next to the first page is the following:

Where shall the weary rest? When shall the lonely of heart come home? What doors are open for the wanderer? And which of us shall find his father, know his face, and in what place, and in what time, and in what land? Where? Where the weary of heart can abide forever, where the weary of wandering can find peace, where the tumult, the fever, and the fret shall be forever stilled.
Who owns this earth? Did we want the earth that we should wander on it? Did we need the earth that we were never still upon it? Whoever needs the earth shall have the earth: he shall be still upon it,he shall rest within a little place, he shall dwell in one small room forever.

Thomas Wolfe...of time and the river
 
Haggis McBagpipe
#14
Thanks, Pea, but twas Avi, not I, who came up with the idea of this thread.

I agree with you about Lovely Bones, it became pretty strange near the end. I didn't like it as much at that point.
 
Prometheus
#15
This is the first paragraph from the first book in a series that I read as a very young child. I have read the series many times since, and will always consider these my favorite books. Can you name it?

Once there were four children whose names were Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy. This story is about something that happened to them when they were sent away from London during the war because of the air-raids. They were sent to the house of an old Professor who lived in the heart of the country, ten miles from the nearest railway station and two miles from the nearest post office. He had no wife and he lived in a very large house with a housekeeper called Mrs Macready and three servants. (Their names were Ivy, Margaret and Betty, but they do not come into the story much.) He himself was a very old man with shaggy white hair which grew over most of his face as well as on his head, and they liked him almost at once; but on the first evening when he came out to meet them at the front door he was so odd-looking that Lucy (who was the youngest) was a little afraid of him, and Edmund (who was the next youngest) wanted to laugh and had to keep on pretending he was blowing his nose to hide it.
 
peapod
#16
Come on...give me a hard one...I have read all lewis's book....How are things in Narnia? the lion witch and the wardrobe
 
peapod
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by LadyC

Yes, that's the book.


Your post kinda sounds odd, though...

I just read that you are right lady C.

When I was 14 I read this book, I have read it many many times...I love it...mostly because it has something to do with nature
Guess what it is?

A vast pulpy mass furlongs in length and breadth, of a glancing cream color, lay floating on the water, innumerable long arms radiating from its centre, and curling and twisting like a nest of anacondas, as if blindly to clutch at any hapless object within reach.
No perceptible face or front did it have; no conceivable token of either sensation or instinct: but undulated there on billows, an unearthly, formless, chance-like apparition of life.
And with a slow sucking sound it slowly disappeared again, Starbuck still gazing at the agitated waters where it had sunk, with a wild voice exclaimed---Almost rather I had seen ---- ---- and fought him than to have seen tee, thou white ghost! The great live squid, which, they say, few whale ships ever beheld and returned to their ports to tell of it....
 
fubbleskag
#18
I am a patriot--of the Fourteenth Ward, Brooklyn, where I was raised. The rest of the United States doesn't exist for me, except as idea, or history, or literature. At ten years of age I was uprooted from my native soil and removed to a cemetery, a Lutheran cemetery, where the tombstones were always in order and the wreaths never faded.

But I was born in the street and raised in the street. "The post-mechanical open street where the most beautiful and hallucinating iron vegatation," etc.... Born under the sign of Aries which gives a fiery, active, energetic and somewhat restless body. With Mars in the ninth house!
 
peapod
#19
I enjoyed the Alcoholic veteran.."the human heart cannot be broken" Henry miller
 
Prometheus
#20
Quote:

A vast pulpy mass furlongs in length and breadth, of a glancing cream color, lay floating on the water, innumerable long arms radiating from its centre, and curling and twisting like a nest of anacondas, as if blindly to clutch at any hapless object within reach.
No perceptible face or front did it have; no conceivable token of either sensation or instinct: but undulated there on billows, an unearthly, formless, chance-like apparition of life.
And with a slow sucking sound it slowly disappeared again, Starbuck still gazing at the agitated waters where it had sunk, with a wild voice exclaimed---Almost rather I had seen ---- ---- and fought him than to have seen tee, thou white ghost! The great live squid, which, they say, few whale ships ever beheld and returned to their ports to tell of it....

That is Melville's Moby Dick, although I like it I am more partial to The Old Man and the Sea by Hemmingway. Something about his character and myself seemed to fit
 
peapod
#21
You cannot compare one to the other....Moby Dick is epic...historical...in the ways of whaling...mr. melville was brilliant if you ask me...he had a complex view of his world, and his philosophical inquiry into the nature of good and evil in Moby Dick is spell binding...beside this is where I got an interest in Architeuthis..the giant squid...the worlds most elusive sea creature...I even had a mind meld with a small version in Chicago once at the aquarium there. Don't matter what anybody says...I knew that it had a brain...I could tell by the way it was looking at me..thats why I could never eat squid...nope never!!

Now the old man and sea...well anybody who fishes knows that story...many people have different interpertations to its meaning...but I like what the writer himself said

There isn't any symbolism. The sea is the sea. The old man is an old man. The boy is a boy and the fish is a fish. The shark are all sharks no better and no worse. All the symbolism that people say is ****. What goes beyond is what you see beyond when you know."
Ernest Hemingway, 1952

It is one of the best fishing stories tho
 

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