Wednesday, December 31, 2014

First Sentences of 2014

It was past nine, past time, for the sun had set, the orchestra had begun to play, and hundreds of guests were streaming up the grand central staircase, their voices rising in an ebullient, ever-swelling chorus to the floors above. ~ Somewhere in France by Jennifer Robson

The man behind the cluttered desk looked like the devil, and Nell Dysart figured that was par for her course since she'd been going to hell for a year and a half anyway. ~ Fast Women by Jennifer Crusie

A boy with a parrot on his shoulder was walking along the railway tracks. ~ The Final Solution by Michael Chabon

I used to think our town, buried in the South Carolina backwoods, stuck in the muddy bottom of the Santee River valley, was the middle of nowhere. ~ Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

It was just the two of us, my mother and me, after my father left. ~ Labor Day by Joyce Maynard

"Mom is still alive, but she's going to be murdered at midnight on Good Friday, " Amanda Martin told the deputy chief, who didn't even think to question the girl; sh'ed already proved she knew more than he and all his colleagues in the Homicide put together. ~ Ripper by Isabel Allende

A great city is nothing more than a portrait of itself, and yet when all is said and done, its arsenals of scenes and images are part of a deeply moving plan. ~ Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin

 Poor, poor Pandora. ~ The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty

 Some days are diamonds. ~ Bombproof by Michael Robotham

 I fell in love and followed her, that's all you need to know. ~ Watching You by Michael Robotham

My name is Piper Hadley and I went missing on the last Saturday of the summer holidays three years ago. ~ Say You're Sorry by Michael Robotham

There is one mirror in my house. ~ Divergent by Veronica Roth

I wake with his name in my mouth. ~ Insurgent by Veronica Roth

I pace in our cell in Erudite headquarters, her words echoing in my mind:  My name will be Edith Prior, and there is much I am happy to forget. ~ Allegiant by Veronica Roth

The news of Anders Eckman's death came by way of Aerogram, a piece of bright blue airmail paper that served as both the stationery and, when folded over and sealed along the edges, the envelope. ~ State of Wonder by Ann Patchett

Bud Knox relaxed on a park bench, basking in the April sunshine, his windbreaker zipped to his chin. A placid man with thinning brown hair, Bud looked nothing at all like a bank robber. ~  Duke City Split by Max Austin

There was one universal truth in Lucky Harbor, Washington - you could hide a pot of gold in broad daylight and no one would steal it, but you couldn't hid a secret. ~ Once in a Lifetime by Jill Shalvis

She woke up late that morning, and knew:

Something had followed them home from Russia. ~ Opening Sentence from Mind of Winter by Laura Kasischke

I stood in the shadows of a deserted shop front across from The Blood and Brew Pub, trying not to be obvious as I tugged my black leather pants back up where they belonged. ~ Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison

"Our daughter looks like a South China peasant with those red cheeks," my father complains, pointedly ignoring the soup before him. ~ Shanghai Girls by Lisa See

The book you now hold in your hands is our first venture into the old long-form technology that our pay-to-print machine in the back room has made possible. ~ Casebook by Mona Simpson

It was supposed to be an evening of bland conversation. ~ Avenge Me by Maisey Yates

It was only a duck pond, out at the back of the farm. ~ The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

I can walk through a house once and know more about its occupants than a psychiatrist could after a year of sessions. ~ The Good House by Ann Leary

It is you. ~ The Book of You by Claire Kendal

"Not a pretty way to die, Alexandra." - Terminal City by Linda Fairstein

Landon Downey clutched the baby name book From Abba to Zed to his chest and knocked on his girlfriend's dorm room door. The Millionaire Affair by Jessica Lemmon

Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death.  ~ Fault in Our Stars by John Green

I was folding laundry and watching an old CSI rerun on TV when Laycee called. ~ A Vampire's Promise by Carla Susan Smith

There are some people who will tell you that if you fall in a dream it's a bad thing. ~ A Vampire's Soul by Carla Susan Smith

The viewing of the body has started. ~ Losing Touch by Sandra Hunter

When people find out what I do for a living their first question is always about the most horrendous case of child abuse I've encountered. Little Mercies by Heather Gudenkauf

"Can you hold up those guys with the body bag, Loo?"  ~ Death Angel by Linda Fairstein

I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice--not because of his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother's death, but because he is the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany. ~ A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving

Ten days after the war ended, my sister Laura drove her car off a bridge. ~ Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood

I was already wide-awake when they came for me. ~ The Curiosity by Stephen P. Kiernan

I'm staring at the insurance man and he's staring at me, two cold gray eyes behind old-fashioned tortoiseshell frames, and I'm having this awful and inspiring feeling, like holy moly this is real, and I don't know if I'm ready, I really don't. ~ The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters

The vampires were behaving weird today. ~ Bound by Night by Larissa Ione

Zoe Brook strode into the exclusive strip club, hidden away beneath a discreet sign on a side street in an otherwise upscale Manhattan neighborhood, like an avenging angel on the warpath at last. ~ Scandalize Me by Caitlin Crews 

Alex Diaz leaned forward in his seat as the limo pulled to the curb of Seventy-Second Street and West End Avenue. ~ Expose Me by Kate Hewitt 

"Help me, Rocky!" ~ The Hexed by Heather Graham

"It's just that he promised," says Martha Milano, pale eyes flashing, cheeks flushed with anxiety. ~ Countdown City by Ben H. Winters

Ghosts didn't have much substance. ~ The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness

One evening, my father asked me whether I would like to become a ghost bride. ~ The Ghost Bride by Yangszee Choo

Exactly twelve minutes into cheerleading practice, and I already wish I were dead. ~ Hexed by Michelle Krys

"Are you here about the dust?" ~ World of Trouble by Ben H. Winters

"I feared you wouldn't know me." The Maxwell Street Blues by Marc Krulewitch

Everyone thinks it was because of the snow. ~ If I Stay by Gayle Foreman

I fell in love with William Ashe at gunpoint, in a Circle K. Someone Else's Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson

Junior Lara saw the doves and knew something was wrong. ~ The Night Visitor by Dianne Emley

The dune fence between their house and the beach still tilted toward the water. ~ A Matter of Mercy by Lynne Hugo

The interview was a catastrophe. ~ A Fistful of Evil by Rebecca Chastain

Aisling's mother died at midsummer. ~ Ash by Malinda Lo

I decided to carry out the first task on my list when fall was about to lose its hue. ~ Saffron Dreams by Shaila Abdullah

Once you finish your milk, put the carton back in the box.  ~ Confessions by Kanae Minato

Adrian Mahoney woke with a start. ~ The Betrayed by Heather Graham

This is a day unlike any other day, ever, in the history of the world. ~ A Penny for the Hangman by Tom Savage

"I say, if you're running away from your wedding you're going about it quite wrong."  ~ Night of a Thousand Stars by Deanna Raybourn

The usual miscreants filled the bar--thugs for hire, men looking for redemption in the bottom of an empty glass, and those simply on the prowl. ~ Erased by Liz Strange

My name, in those days, was Susan Trinder. ~ Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

As his car crunched the gravel on the side of the road next to the Epp Farm, Kommissar Rolf Wundt once again had to lean forward, pinch the bridge of his nose, and force his eyes open. ~ The Summer of Long Knives by Jim Snowden

The rain assaults my car in the far corner of the empty train station lot, and the wipers dance to a furious beat, so awkwardly out of sync with everything else. ~ Last Train to Babylon by Charlee Fam

Daisy was not crazy. ~ The Art of Arranging Flowers by Lynne Branard

Well, thank God this is over, I thought as I drove--well, blew--past the sign that marked the Westchester, Connecticut, city limits.  ~ Ill Wind by Rachel Caine

There was a storm brewing over Church Falls, Oklahoma. ~ Heat Stroke by Rachel Caine

The sky overhead was blue. ~ Child Factor by Rachel Caine

In the fashionable fifth arrondissement along the river Siene, Elodie stands beside her flower cart watching couples stroll arm in arm.  ~ The Look of Love by Sarah Jio

"Up on the rooftop, reindeer paws . . ." ~ A Little Christmas Jingle by Michele Dunaway

I kept trying to tell myself, You've survived worse than this, but it didn't seem to be working. ~ Windfall by Rachel Caine

I was thinking that the Wardens needed a new motto. ~  Firestorm by Rachel Caine

There were worse things that being naked, freezing, and alone in a forest. ~ Thin Air by Rachel Caine

"There's nothing worse than having the hots for a sexy guy, and then finding out he has the personality of a turnip." ~ Oh, Naughty Night! by Leslie Kelly

Kayla Green cranked up the volume on her favorite playlist and blocked out the sound of festive music and laughter wafting under her closed office door. ~ Sleigh Bells in the Snow by Sarah Morgan

"Honey!" I yelled. ~ Gale Force by Rachel Caine

I've had many oh crap moments in my life. ~ Cape Storm by Rachel Caine

Black corner. ~ Total Eclipse by Rachel Caine

Snowflakes whirled around Brooke Abbott's head in blustery waves as she started down the sidewalk and back to her shop from the Stop & Go convenience store. ~ Blame It On the Mistletoe by Nicole Michaels

She had been naked for less than ten seconds when the snow began to feel hot. ~ Be Safe I Love You by Cara Hoffman

© 2014, 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. Another in-depth looks at 2014 in books. Glad it was a good year for you Wendy. Happy New Year.

  2. It's amazing all of the different ways that authors think to try to grab our attention.

    1. Lisa - I think so too! Some definitely more so than others.

  3. I now want to read Rachel Caine! What a great way to look at all the books you've read!

  4. What a great idea to keep a record of first sentences. A first sentence is almost as important as title and cover in evoking my interest. I may not be able to judge the book by any of these, but they are crucial in persuading me give the book a chance--and often they do a pretty good job of predicting whether or not I will like the book.


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