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Saturday, March 8th, 2008

Time Event
12:44a
Throw me a line
To expand upon the note with which I ended my last post, how many of these First Lines can you identify by book and author?


1. There was a man named Lessingham dwelt in an old low house in Wastdale, set in a gray old garden where yew-trees flourished that had seen Vikings in Copeland in their seedling time.

2. The only possible excuse for this book is that it is an answer to a challenge.

3. I am old now and have not much to fear from the anger of the gods.

4. The free state of Dorimare was a very small country, but, seeing that it was bounded on the south by the sea and on the north and east by mountains, while its centre consisted of a rich plain, watered by two rivers, a considerable variety of scenery and vegetation was to be found within its borders.

5. In the sea, once upon a time, O my Best Beloved, there was a Whale, and he ate fishes.

6. Marley was dead, to begin with.

7. As I walked through the wilderness of this world I lighted on a certain place where was a den, and laid me down in that place to sleep; and, as I slept, I dreamed a dream.

8. I had this story from one who had no business to tell it to me, or to any other.

9. I suppose that very few casual readers of the New York Herald of August 13, 1863, observed, in an obscure corner, among the “Deaths,” the announcement:— “NOLAN. Died, on board U.S. Corvette Levant, Lat. 2° 11’ S. Long. 131° W., on the 11th of May, PHILIP NOLAN.”

10. The island of Gont, a single mountain that lifts its peak a mile above the storm-racked Northeast Sea, is a land famous for wizards.

Answers below the cut.

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12:48p
Throw me another line
Okay, so some of those in my last post were a wee bit obscure, though I would have thought my fellow geeks were more into them. So here are some more famous first lines of books. See how many Titles and Authors you can identify. Answers below the cut.


1. In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.

2. Call me Ishmael.

3. I sing of arms and the man who first from the shores of Troy came destined an exile to Italy and the Lavinian beaches, much buffeted he on land and on the deep by force of the gods because of fierce Juno’s never-forgetting anger.

4. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all doing direct the other way.

5. It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents, except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.

6. All of Gaul is divided into three parts.

7. “That’s torn it!” said Lord Peter Wimsey.

8. In the year 1878 I took my degree of Doctor of Medicine of the University of London, and proceeded to Netley to go through the course prescribed for surgeons in the Army.

9. You don’t know about me, without you have read a book by the name of “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” but that ain’t no matter.

10. It was seven o’clock of a very warm evening in the Seeonee Hills when Father Wolf woke up from his day’s rest, scratched himself, yawned, and spread out his paws one after the other to get rid of the sleepy feeling in their tips.


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4:14p
10:14p
Yet another Bulwer-Lytton gem
She'd been strangled with a rosary-not a run-of-the-mill rosary like you might get at a Catholic bookstore where Hail Marys are two for a quarter and indulgences are included on the back flap of the May issue of "Nuns and Roses" magazine, but a fancy heirloom rosary with pearls, rubies, and a solid gold cross, a rosary with attitude, the kind of rosary that said, "Get your Jehovah's Witness butt off my front porch."

See http://www.bulwer-lytton.com/2007.htm

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