I really enjoy ruminating over the first lines of books on Fridays because it begins the weekend with so much promise! Here I sit, holding two crisp, new novels. The bindings haven’t been broken in, there’s no tell-tale coffee stains or chocolate smudges. Just hope for an engaging read.
Fridays are also the perfect day to examine book beginnings as the weekend is when I usually finish up one novel and am ready to start anew on Saturday or Sunday. The whole weekend awaits my choice.
My choices this weekend are A Room with a View by E.M. Forster and Divergent by Veronica Roth. The former is one I know that I will love and will meet my craving for a classic. The latter is highly anticipated with good reviews from trusted bloggers and students. It also a choice for the Goodreads book club I belong to.
Let’s look at each novel’s first lines and see if that tips the scales, shall we?
“The Signora had no business to do it,” said Miss Bartlett, “no business at all. She promised us south rooms with a view close together, instead of which here are north rooms, looking into a courtyard, and a long way apart. Oh, Lucy!”
“And a Cockney, besides!” said Lucy, who had been further saddened by the Signora’s unexpected accent. “It might be London.”
A Room with a View by E.M. Forster
Ahh…turn-of-the-century travel woes. I love that I already have a feel for two of the characters from the get-go. I wonder what kind of guardian Miss Bartlett will be–probably the conservative, foolish kind. I am picturing Aunt Pitty-Pat from Gone with the Wind. Always wringing her hands, on the verge of fainting. Thumbs up for the classic!
I’m sure this will be a significant scene as it directly relates to the title. Perhaps Lucy’s character will dramatically change and she will look back on this scene as a stranger.
There is one mirror in my house. Our faction allows me to stand in front of it on the second day of every third month, the day my mother cuts my hair. It is behind a sliding panel in the hallway upstairs.
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Engaging beginning…I know from reviews that this novel is dystopian, so it sounds as if this society disapproves of vanity. It’s also a very structured society, as there is a set date for usage of the mirror, the same day as the narrator’s monthly haircut. Interesting. I do enjoy a good dystopian novel, and I’ve heard nothing but good things about this one! Plus, I’m still yearning for the feeling I got from The Hunger Games trilogy, so perhaps this will sate that desire.
So, tough choices here. I’m still undecided. I guess that when I finish Olive Kitteridge today or tomorrow, I’ll feel a sense of urgency to read one of the two. If not, there’s always the trusty coin toss! Check back this weekend to see my choice!