Bookish List

Ten Compelling Opening Lines from Books

Ten Compelling Opening Lines from Books

Hello friends, it’s Vera here today and today’s post is going to be all about opening lines. 😊 I don’t believe that every book has to have a good opening line – I feel like that would be kind of impossible? – but I do love it when a book has a really memorable or unique opening line. So for today’s post, I collected ten novels with great opening lines.

Please note that all of these books were 4 and 5 star reads, so it’s not just their beginning that is splendid and I’d gladly recommend them all. If you would like to discover more books with great opening lines, you can check out my previous posts on this topic by clicking here and here. 🥰

“Almost every night, between nine and ten past, Lainie Graham passionately kissed her ex-boyfriend. She was then gruesomely dead by ten o’clock, stabbed through the neck by a jealous rival.

Act Like It by Lucy Parker

“It wasn’t chance. There wasn’t any part of it that happened just by chance.

The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

“If I have learned anything in this long life of mine, it is this: In love we find out who we want to be, in war we find out who we are.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

“Nightingale House was not born with secrets, but they were made here.
They were sealed into the walls and buried beneath the floorboards.”

The Nightingale House by Steve Frech

“Stories always begin the same way: There was and there was not.
There is possibility in those words, the chance for hope or despair.”

Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

“I’ll know it’s working when he starts to scream.”

They Never Learn by Layne Fargo

“How many people can say they were there the night the trick went wrong and the Magician died on stage.”

The Ghost Sequences by A.C. Wise

“How ought one dress to hire a thief?”

Any Old Diamonds by K.J. Charles

“I never dreamed it would end like this, my lord: your blood splashing hot flecks onto my nightgown and pouring in rivulets onto our bedchamber floor.”

A Dowry of Blood by S.T. Gibson

“I open the back door to let the dogs out, and Nadua’s got her gardening shears buried like a knife in one of my fiancé’s wings.”

The Witch King by H. E. Edgmon

That was easier to put together than I expected, to be honest! It turns out that a lot of the books I enjoyed / loved in the past year or so have excellent opening lines. Have you read any of these books? How important are opening lines for you? How much are you willing to wait for a book to capture your attention? (If you’re wondering, my answer to that is a couple of chapters, or 10-30% of the book.) Thanks for reading my post, can’t wait to talk to you all in the comments! 🙂


9 thoughts on “Ten Compelling Opening Lines from Books

  1. Ohh all of those do have great openings, can hardly pick a favorite!

    My hat’s off to you, as I never remember the opening of books 🤣 so i’d flip them but most would just be eh. Somehow I do think of the one from Anxious people


  2. I loved The Witch King’s opening line! I can’t wait to read the sequel. I think for me, opening lines are semi-important. They’re not a deal breaker for me, like you, I can read about 10-30% of the book before completing giving up on it, however I am more likely to remember books with good opening lines.


  3. Ahh this is such a fantastic idea for a post, I love it. I love it when a book captivates me from the very first line. That opening line for the first book by Lucy Parker intrigues me, a lot ahah!


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