Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Best Opening Sentence of a Novel

If you have to pick one desert island, all time favorite first sentence of a novel, what would you choose?

Though deceptively simple, I always think of the opening of Melville's Moby Dick when I consider memorable first sentences. It's the utility and purposely vague phrasing -- just three words, but a sentence that absolutely sets the stage for the rest of the novel:

"Call me Ishmael."

1 comment:

  1. "Her gynecologist recommended him to me." John Irving, "The Water-Method Man." Not high art by any stretch, but good, strangely compelling, early-Irving graduate-student-period fun.