Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday Fun: Book Beginnings and Latest Additions to the Wish List

Hosted by Gillion Dumas of Rose City Reader
Weekly meme where book bloggers and readers share the
first sentence of the book they are reading say what they think

I love this meme. An opening may not make or break a book, but they are important. Especially for someone like me who needs an instant hook or else I might start looking elsewhere.

Excerpt from John Verdon's Think of a Number:

"Where were you?" said the old woman in the bed. "I had to pee, and no one came."
As a first sentence, not much is revealed about the book or what it might be about from that first statement.  The second sentence fills in the picture slightly more, although not much:

Unruffled by her nasty tone, the young man stood at the foot of the bed, beaming.
Clearly, he's excited about something.

Then there is the second book in the series, Shut Your Eyes Tight:

He stood in front of the mirror and smiled with deep satisfaction at his own smiling reflection.
Followed by:

He could not at that moment have been more pleased with himself, with his life, with his intelligence--no, it was more than that, more than his intelligence.  His mental status could more accurantely be described as a profound understanding of everything, an understanding that wetn far beyond the normal range of human wisdom.
I had to laugh a little seeing these two beginnings one right after the other.  They are very similar, aren't they? The characters, likely the antagonists, are both very happy about something.  Given they are in a mystery series, my guess is whoever the guys are, they are up to no good.

It got me curious about the third book in the series, Let the Devil Sleep, which I have yet to start reading.  Would it have a similar beginning as the other two books?

She had to be stopped.
The first two books in the series opened with first sentences that were, well, okay.  Not quite enough to pull me in on their own, but enough to keep me reading.  The opening to the third book, however, hooked me right away. 

What do you think?  Do these openings make you yearn for more or are they not quite tantilizing enough?

I distinguish my To Be Read (TBR) collection from my Wish List--one made up of books I own or have on hand to read, while the other is a list of books I want to read but do not yet have in my possesion.  On Fridays, I offer a sampling of books that have been added to my Wish List. 

Latest Wish List Additions:

He Died with His Eyes Open by Derek Raymond
recommended by Marie from The Boston Bibliophile

Marie's description of this book as "The book is great, gripping and poetic crime fiction" piqued my interest immediately. And from her review, this is a can't miss literary mystery.

Delusions of Gender by Cordelia Fine
recommended by Aarti from BookLust

This particular book caught my eye because of my interest in the subject matter.  After reading Aarti's review, I am even more curious about it.  I wonder how it will compare to the class I took in college many years ago on a similar topic.

The Reckoning by Jane Casey
recommended by Jill from Rhapsody in Books Weblog

For some reason, I am especially interested in British Crime Fiction right now and so when I saw mention of this book and read Jill's review, I knew I had to add it to my wish list. This may be one book that doesn't stay on it long--my TBR collection may have an opening soon.

Translation of Bones by Francesca Kay
recommended by Diane from Bibliophile by the Sea

I nearly dismissed this book when I initially read the description of it, but Diane's review convinced me I might enjoy this one.  I am really curious about the direction the author takes the subject matter.

Skippy Dies by Paul Murray
recommended by Jenners from Life... With Books

I really like the sound of this particular book and Jenners has me convinced I will like it just as much as she did.

City of Women by David R. Gillham
recommended by Julie from Booking Mama

There's just something about this cover.  Set during World War II, of course, I sat up and took notice.  It sounds like something I would really like.  And if Julie loved it, I likely will too.

Have you read any of these books?  What did you think?

© 2012, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.


  1. I think we read a lot of the same blogs. I hope you get the books you're wishing for soon.

    1. Kathy - I think we do too. :-) I see your comments just about everywhere I go.

  2. I hope you love CITY OF WOMEN! It's outstanding!

    1. Julie - I am sure I will! Thank you for recommending it!

  3. I really want to read City of Women, too - I requested an audio review copy from Audiobook Jukebox, and I'm really hoping I get chosen!

    1. Carrie - I hope you get chosen too! I'd love to read your thoughts on City of Women.

  4. I've been meaning to read Skippy Dies for a long time. I started it and read a couple of chapters and then it went back to the library. After seeing Jenners' recommendation though I have been reconsidering it.

    1. Alyce - Skippy Dies sounds like such an interesting book. I hope we both get to read it.

  5. I would read all three of those books based on the strength of those opening sentences! I also want to read The Translation of the Bones and City of Women. I think we have read a lot of the same reviews!

    1. Heather - I am enjoying the Dave Gurney books quite a bit. I'm on the third book now.


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