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First Liners - Quotes

I have seen things You wouldn't believe, All of those moments, wil be lost in time, like tears in the rain.

Phillip K. Dick
Bladerunner/Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

(contributed by herbert)

The prince said, "Who is she, Molly? What kind of woman is it who believes - who knows, for I saw her face - that she can cure wounds with a touch, and who weeps without tears?" Molly went about her work, still humming to herself. "Any woman can weep without tears," she answered over her shoulder, "and most can heal with their hands. It depends on the wound. She is a woman, Your Highness, and that's riddle enough."

Peter Beagle
The Last Unicorn

The unicorn lived in a lilac wood, and she lived all alone. She was very old, though she did not know it, and she was no longer the careless color of sea foam, but rather the color of snow falling on a moonlit night. But her eyes were still clear and unwearied, and she still moved like a shadow on the sea.

Peter S. Beagle
The Last Unicorn

(contributed by Aidan Elliott-McCrea)

It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on earth has ever produced the expression 'As pretty as an airport.'

Douglas Adams
The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

On the morning the last Lisbon daughter took her turn at suicide - it was Mary this time, and sleeping pills, like Therese - the two paramedics arrived at the house knowing exactly where the knife drawer was, and the gas oven, and the beam in the basement from which it was possible to tie a rope.

Jeffrey Eugenides
The Virgin Suicides

When Mr. Bilbo Baggins of Bag End announced that he would shortly be celebrating his eleventy-first birthday with a party of special magnificence, there was much talk and excitement in Hobbiton.

John Ronald Reuld Tolkien
The Lord of the Rings

My job is to give people fabulous stories to tell.

Chuck Palahniuk

(contributed by esmerelda)

Among other public buildings in a certain town, which for many reasons it will be prudent to refrain from mentioning, and to which I will assign no fictitious name, there is one anciently common to most towns, great or small: to wit, a workhouse; and in this workhouse was born; on a day and date which I need not trouble myself to repeat, inasmuch as it can be of no possible consequence to the reader, in this stage of the business at all events; the item of mortality whose name is prefixed to the head of this chapter.

Charles Dickens
Oliver Twist

Among other public buildings in a certain town, which for many reasons it will be prudent to refrain from mentioning, and to which I will assign no fictitious name, there is one anciently common to most towns, great or small: to wit, a workhouse; and in this workhouse was born; on a day and date which I need not trouble myself to repeat, inasmuch as it can be of no possible consequence to the reader, in this stage of the business at all events; the item of mortality whose name is prefixed to the head of this chapter.

Charles Dickens
Oliver Twist

"Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.

Louisa May Alcott
Little Women

"Please, sir, is this Plumfield?" asked a ragged boy of the man who opened the great gate at which the omnibus left him.

Lousia May Alcott
Little Men

When I was three and Bailey was four, we had arrived in the musty little town, wearing tags on our wrists which instructed - "To Whom It May Concern" - that we were Marguerite and Bailey Johnson Jr., from Long Beach, California, en route to Stamps, Arkansas, c/o Mrs. Annie Henderson.

Maya Angelou
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

His name was Gaal Dornick and he was just a country boy who had never seen Trantor before.

Isaac Asimov

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.

Jane Austen
Pride and Prejudice

Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her.

Jane Austen

All children, except one, grow up.

James Matthew Barrie
Peter Pan

Dorothy lived in the midst of the great Kansas prairies, with Uncle Henry, who was a farmer, and Aunt Em, who was the farmer's wife.

Frank Baum
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

The great fish moved silently through the night water, propelled by short sweeps of its crescent tail.

Peter Benchley

Like the brief doomed flare of exploding suns that registers dimly on blind men's eyes, the beginning of the horror passed almost unnoticed; in the shriek of what followed, in fact, was forgotten and perhaps not connected to the horror at all.

William Peter Blatty
The Exorcist

It was a pleasure to burn.

Ray Bradbury
Fahrenheit 451

1801 -- I have just returned from a visit to my landlord -- the solitary neighbor that I shall be troubled with.

Emily Brontė
Wuthering Heights

What's it going to be then, eh?

Anthony Burgess
A Clockwork Orange

When Mary Lennox was sent to Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle everybody said she was the most disagreeable-looking child ever seen.

Frances Hodgson Burnett
The Secret Garden

Mother died today.

Albert Camus
The Stranger

Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, "and what is the use of a book," thought Alice "without pictures or conversation?"

Lewis Caroll
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

At a village of La Mancha, whose name I do not wish to remember, there lived a little while ago one of those gentlemen who are wont to keep a lance in the rack, an old buckler, a lean horse and a swift greyhound.

Miguel de Cervantes
Don Quixote

The drought had lasted now for ten million years, and the reign of the terrible lizards had long since ended.

Arthur C. Clarke
2001: A space Odyssey

He was an inch, perhaps two, under six feet, powerfully built, and he advanced straight at you with a slight stoop of the shoulders, head forward, and a fixed from-under stare which made you think of a charging bull.

Joseph Conrad
Lord Jim

It was a feature peculiar to the colonial wars of North America, that the toils and dangers of the wilderness were to be encountered before the adverse hosts could meet.

James Fenimore Cooper
The Last of the Mohicans

These two very old people are the father and mother of Mr. Bucket.

Roald Dahl
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

I was born in the year 1632, in the city of York, of a good family, though not of that country, my father being a foreigner of Bremen, who settled first at Hull. He got a good estate by merchandise, and leaving off his trade lived afterward at York, from whence he had married my mother, whose relations were named Robinson, a good family in that country, and from whom I was called Robinson Kreutznear; but by the usual corruption of words in England we are now called, nay, we call ourselves, and write our name, Crusoe, and so my companions always called me.

Daniel Defoe
Robinson Crusoe

A merry little surge of electricity piped by automatic alarm from the mood organ beside his bed awakened Rick Deckard.

Phillip Dick
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (Blade Runner)

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 going direct the other way--in short, the period was so.

Charles Dickens
A Tale of Two Cities

My father's family name being Pirrip, and my christian name Philip, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer or more explicit than Pip.

Charles Dickens
Great Expectations

Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show.

Charles Dickens
The Personal History of David Copperfield

Marley was dead, to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that.

Charles Dickens
A Christmas Carol

Mr. Sherlock Holmes, who was usually very late in the mornings, save upon those not infrequent occasions when he was up all night, was seated at the breakfast table.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Hound of the Baskervilles

On the first Monday of the month of April, 1625, the town of Meung, in which the author of The Romance of the Rose was born, appeared to be in a perfect state of revolution as if the Hugenots had just made a second Rochelle of it.

Alexandre Dumas
The Three Musketeers

On the 24th of February, 1815, the lookout of Notre-Dame de la Garde signalled the three-master, the Pharaon, from Smyrna, Trieste, and Naples. As usual, a pilot put off immediately, and rounding the Chateau d'If, got on board the vessel between Cape Morgion and the Isle of Rion.

Alexandre Dumas
The Count of Monte Cristo

In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since.

F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby

James Bond, wth two double bourbons inside him, sat back in the final departure lounge of Miami Airport and thought about life and death.

Ian Fleming

Most motorcars are conglomerations (this is a long word for bundles) of steel and wire and rubber and plastic, and electricity and oil and gasoline and water, and the toffee papers you pushed down the crack in the back seat last Sunday.

Ian Fleming

At seven o'clock, the morning of the 26th of December, the S.S. Poseidon, 81,000 tons, homeward bound for Lisbon after a month-long Christmas cruise to African and South American ports, suddenly found herself in the midst of an unaccountable swell, 400 miles south-west of the Azores, and began to roll like a pig.

Paul Gallico
The Poseidon Adventure

The old ram stands looking down over rockslides, stupidly triumphant.

John Gardner

The boy with fair hair lowered himself down the last few feet of rock and began to pick his way towards the lagoon.

William Golding
Lord of the Flies

This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it.

William Goldman
The Princess Bride

The Mole had been working very hard all the morning, spring-cleaning his little home.

Kenneth Grahame
The Wind in the Willows

It is a curious thing that at my age, fifty-five last birthday, I should find myself taking up a pen to try and write a history.

H. R. Haggard
King Solomon's Mines

Samuel Spade's jaw was long and bony, his chin a jutting v under the more flexible v of his mouth.

Dashiell Hammett
The Maltese Falcon

Halfway down a bystreet of one of our New England towns stands a rusty wooden house, with seven acutely peaked gables, facing towards various points of the compass, and a huge, clustered chimney in the midst.

Nathaniel Hawthorne
The House of Seven Gables