For the last few weeks I've been thinking about making a list of my top ten opening lines of books that I have read before I turned 18.

After a week of recalling all the titles and going through my bookshelf I've come up with the following list.

I must note, before I present the list, that this is not a list of the top ten books that I have read before turning 18, but a list of top ten book opening lines.

Without further ado, the list:

  1. "The storm had broken."
    Magician: Apprentice, Raymond E. Feist
  2. "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen."
    1984, George Orwell
  3. "The sun was already sinking into the deep green of the hills to the west of the valley, the red and gray-pink of its shadows touching the corners of the land, when Flick Ohmsford began his descent."
    The Sword of Shannara, Terry Brooks
  4. "All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."
    Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
  5. "When Mr Bilbo Baggins of Bag End announced that he would shortly be celebrating his eleventyifirst birthday with a party of special magnificence, there was much talk and excitement in Hobbiton."
    The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkein
  6. "Behind every man now alive stand thirty ghosts, for that is the ratio by which the dead outnumber the living."
    2001 - A Space Odyssey, Arthur C. Clarke.
  7. "Thus communed these; while to their lowly dome, the full-fed swine return'd with evening home; compell'd, reluctant, to the several sties, with din obstreperous, and ungrateful cries."
    Ivanhoe, Sir Walter Scott
  8. "Marley was dead, to begin with."
    A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
  9. "You will rejoice to hear that no disaster has accompanied the commencement of an enterprise which you have regarded with such evil forebodings."
    Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
  10. "Call me Ishmael."
    Moby-Dick, Herman Melville

Another interesting fact I've noticed is that if I ware to join up these opening lines in one paragraph, parts of it could make a nice story, or excerpts of a story the reader imagines on the go.