Top Ten Tuesday #265


Hi everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good week since I last did one of these, the monotony of lockdown life continues over here, but I went for a nice walk with my family on Bank Holiday Monday yesterday and the weather continues to be nice so it’s not all doom and gloom here.

Anyway, as it’s Tuesday, I’m back with another Top Ten Tuesday courtesy of Jana over at That Artsy Reader Girl. This week we’re talking Opening Lines. I was initially going to do my favourite Opening Lines from books, but then I realised that most of the ones I had were remarkably similar to ones I’d used for a Thursday Quotables topic a few years ago. So I decided to tweak my choice of Opening Lines topic a little, and go with Best Opening Lines From My Favourite Authors’ Books. Some are the same as from that Thursday Quotables topic, but this allowed me for a lot more new ones, so it shouldn’t be a complete rehash:

  1. “Look I didn’t want to be a half-blood” -The Lightning Thief, Rick Riordan

I was instantly hooked by this first line and wanted to know more, which is exactly what an opening to a book should do. I really hope the new TV series starts with this, would be so brilliant!

2. “Kell wore a very peculiar coat” -A Darker Shade of Magic, VE Schwab

Again, this opening line is just instantly intriguing. We have no idea who Kell is or what about this particular coat is strange, but you want to know more, don’t you?

3. “Blue Sargent had forgotten how many times she’d been told she’d kill her true love” -The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater

The opening line to this book (and series) tells you a lot that you need to know already, before you’ve even met most of the characters. You know that Blue is going to be important and you know that she’s going to kill her true love. What you don’t yet know is how or why, which sets up an intriguing beginning for a very strange series.

4. “Maybe I’d always been broken inside” -A Court of Mist and Fury, Sarah J Maas

The opening line to A Court of Mist and Fury really sets up Feyre’s current state of mind and the journey that she is going to go on over the course of the book.

5. “Gordon Edgely’s sudden death came as a shock to everyone-not least himself” -Skulduggery Pleasant, Derek Landy

It’s an interesting move to start a series with a character that is not the main character, but it really works here. It sets up the humour and tone for the book whilst also making the reader wonder, well who is Gordon Edgely and why is he dead?

6. “By the time Alex was able to get the blood out of her good wool coat, it was too warm to wear it” -Ninth House, Leigh Bardugo

It was a toss up between this and the opening to Six of Crows, but I went with this one because as good an opening line as Six of Crows has, Joost is barely relevant to the story. This one on the other hand, sets up the main character of the book, establishes that this opening is set sometime in the future so we know that we are likely to be flashing back through the book and it also establishes that someone has likely died, given that Alex’s coat has blood on it. That’s quite a lot of heavy lifting that this opening line does!

7. “Mr and Mrs Dursley of Number 4 Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much” -Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone, JK Rowling

I will admit that I wouldn’t necessarily position JK Rowling as a favourite anymore, given well…..everything, but I do still love Harry Potter and this opening line is pretty iconic. By setting up the story with the Dursleys and establishing how normal they are, you are immediately given to wondering where the “abnormality” is in this particular world.

8. “It’s rare that a story starts at the beginning” -The Mime Order, Samantha Shannon

This doesn’t really do much in terms of setting up world and characters (though it is a second book, so that’s pretty well done by this point) and it’s more sort of a mini prologue before we get into the story proper, but I really love this musing, because it’s very true? When we read books, we’re never actually starting at the beginning of someone’s story. we’re starting at the beginning of whatever interesting thing is about to happen to them.

9. “The scythe arrived late on a cold November afternoon” -Scythe, Neal Shusterman

I immediately have questions on reading this, you want to know exactly what is a scythe, what is this particular one doing and why is he important to the story?

10. “They said that the only folk who belonged in Deadshot after dark were the ones who were up to no good” -Rebel of The Sands, Alwyn Hamilton

Again, I’m instantly intrigued. We have a setting, Deadshot and we know that the people who live in this town might be less than savoury. You also immediately want to know exactly what kind of “no good” our narrator might be up to.

So there we go, those are some of my favourite opening lines from books by my favourite authors! Do you like any of these? What are your favourite opening lines? Let me know in the comments!

I will be back next week with a new Top Ten Tuesday, Books That Give off Summer Vibes, which might be a tricky one for me, since I am firmly an Autumn/Winter vibe kind of reader, but we’ll see if I manage to come up with anything!

79 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday #265

  1. lydiaschoch 26/05/2020 / 11:38 am

    Yay for the Harry Potter shoutout! I’d bet we’ll be seeing a lot that this week. πŸ™‚

    My TTT .

  2. evelynreads1 26/05/2020 / 1:11 pm

    The first sentence of ADSOM and The raven boys are so good!


  3. Jess @ Jessticulates 26/05/2020 / 1:46 pm

    Great list! I don’t read the Skulduggery Pleasant books anymore but I loved the first 4 or 5 and that opening line is so good, and definitely sets up the sense of humour the series has.

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:28 am

      Thanks! Yes, it’s such a great indicator of what’s to come in the rest of the series. Skulduggery and Percy Jackson were basically the big YA series of my teens, from like 12-18 those were the big series that I read.

  4. Matt Sweeney 26/05/2020 / 1:57 pm

    I don’t think I’ve heard of most of these, but they definitely sound intriguing!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:26 am

      Hope you’ve found some great new books to check out πŸ™‚

  5. My Book Jar 26/05/2020 / 2:17 pm

    Carmen and I are looking forward to the Lightning Thief series. We hope they do the books justice!
    Thanks for stopping by My Book Jar!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:26 am

      So excited! Me too, at least whatever they do, they would be hard pushed to do worse than the films!

  6. An @ Traversing Chapters 26/05/2020 / 2:20 pm

    Great list! I absolutely agree with you on JK Rowling… And I considered putting Scythe in my top 10 as well πŸ™‚

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:25 am

      Thanks! Yeah….she’s been not great to say the least over the last few years.

  7. Regine Karpel 26/05/2020 / 2:31 pm

    Yes to Rick Riordan.

  8. Leslie 26/05/2020 / 4:00 pm

    So many good ones on this list!! I just started Percy Jackson yesterday!! πŸ™‚

    My Top Ten

  9. Cheryl Malandrinos 26/05/2020 / 4:44 pm

    All of these are so good. As you know, Harry Potter made my list, too. Loved the opening of The Raven Boys and A Court of Mist and Fury. The Mime Order intrigued me. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Brooke Lorren (@Brookelorren) 26/05/2020 / 5:02 pm

    The first line to The Raven Boys instantly hooked me. And although I had forgotten the first line of Ninth House until today, that one is good too!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:23 am

      Yes me too. Ha ha I had to look it up for this list, so you’re not the only one πŸ™‚

  11. Dedra @ A Book Wanderer 26/05/2020 / 5:02 pm

    Ahh, the opening lines of The Raven Boys is one of my favorites. So memorable!

  12. evelynb98 26/05/2020 / 7:02 pm

    Great list! I am ashamed to say I forgot how good the opening line for Harry Potter was, but now I;m wondering how I ever could!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:21 am

      Thanks! Ah it’s been a while, I can’t say I actually really remembered any of these off the top of my head, I had to look most of them up!

  13. Time for tales and tea 26/05/2020 / 7:11 pm

    I haven’t read any book by Leigh Bardugo, but I already love her opening lines! I also like the one from Skulduggery Pleasant, it’s definitively a funny and interesting way to begin a book.

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:20 am

      She definitely knows how to start a book with a bang! Yeah, the opening line to Skulduggery Pleasant definitely sets up the tone and humour of the books really well.

  14. agreatreviewer 26/05/2020 / 8:00 pm

    OOoh nice ones!! I still need to read Ninth House myself! Thought I would try to wait out for book 2 to release, but we’ll see. I’m on a TBR kick right now and am enjoying reading older titles I meant to read sooner now! Lol.

    Thanks for visiting my TTT!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:18 am

      Thanks! I mean it’s going to be a while before the second book comes out, so depends how long you want to wait. Yes, I’ve been doing that this year as well, not being able to physically go into bookshops has definitely curbed my buying a little!

  15. Louise 26/05/2020 / 9:29 pm

    I really hope they have that Percy Jackson line in the new series.

  16. FangirlFlax 26/05/2020 / 10:01 pm

    Those were my issues with Six of Crows, too – but this makes me really excited to read Ninth House!

  17. abookandacup 26/05/2020 / 10:33 pm

    haha I do think we have very similar reading tastes!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:15 am

      Always nice to find fellow readers who have similar tastes to me!

  18. Nikki @The Night is Dark and Full of Books 26/05/2020 / 10:36 pm

    I always really like the type of books that start off by saying something like “it’s rare that a story starts at the beginning”. You’re like: where else does it start? Also those that start like. This is where it starts. Well… yes… thanks captain obvious πŸ˜‚

  19. Aj @ Read All The Things! 27/05/2020 / 12:29 am

    Harry Potter has a brilliant opening. I still remember that line from my childhood. I’m hopefully going to be reading The Raven Boys next!

  20. anovelglimpse 27/05/2020 / 12:55 am

    The Raven Boys has one of my favorite opening lines ever. So good!

  21. Tiffany @ String of Pages 27/05/2020 / 1:55 am

    I love Six of Crows, but I haven’t read Ninth House yet. It sounds interesting, so I need to check it out soon! I also love Percy Jackson and ADSOM ❀

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:13 am

      You definitely should! Ah two of my favourites πŸ™‚

  22. Tracey Tran 27/05/2020 / 3:07 am

    How amazing that you included Skullduggery Pleasant! It brings back so many childhood memories!!

  23. Leah 27/05/2020 / 5:01 am

    I’ve seen several people use the first line from The Raven Boys. I should definitely read it.

  24. Anne Bennett 27/05/2020 / 5:47 am

    I like that quote about how most stories don’t start at the beginning. Thanks for visiting my blog.

  25. Aayushi 27/05/2020 / 7:14 am

    Great list! I’m sure the one from Harry Potter is on many lists this week πŸ˜€
    I have been planning to read The Ninth House, and the opening lines have definitely piqued my interest now!

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:12 am

      Thanks! Yeah it definitely was. I hope you enjoy it πŸ™‚

  26. Greg 27/05/2020 / 9:05 am

    Love that first one, and I’ve seen the Stiefvater book a lot of lists! Fun picks… this was a great topic πŸ™‚

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:11 am

      It’s the second book in the Bone Season series, great series, highly recommend πŸ™‚

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:10 am

      Yeah it’s a little longer than I would usually like for an opener but as a description of the Dursleys, it’s pretty perfect!

  27. nushushri 27/05/2020 / 3:18 pm

    As an avid coat-lover, the line from A Darker Shade Of Magic intrigues me!

  28. jessicabookworm 27/05/2020 / 4:00 pm

    Hey Jo, you have some really intriguing opening lines here – I’m afraid most of them are new to me, but I have read The Lightning Thief and, as you already know from my list, Harry Potter! 😁

    • iloveheartlandx 28/05/2020 / 11:09 am

      Thanks! Glad to have helped you find some new books πŸ™‚

  29. Sarah - SWB 27/05/2020 / 6:38 pm

    Great list! The only one I’ve read is Harry Potter, but that opening to Ninth House has me intrigued!

  30. thebookishlibra 02/06/2020 / 12:34 am

    We had several of the same ones. The one from ADSOM is definitely one of my favorites. It’s such an unusual way to start a book.

    • iloveheartlandx 04/06/2020 / 3:06 pm

      Yes, it really is, definitely a good way to hook a reader!

  31. lindseyhabets 08/06/2020 / 5:41 pm

    So many amazing opening lines! I do especially love the Percy Jackson, Shades of Magic and Raven Boys ones.

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