First Sentences in YA Lit, Answers

In lieu of a book review, here are the authors and books matched up to the first sentences I posted on Friday. (Oh, and the parenthetical P notations indicate, where I remember, that the first sentence comes from a prologue, since I’ve been obsessed with prologues lately.)

1. We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck. -M. T. Anderson, Feed

2. It was a dark and stormy night. -Madeleine L’Engle, A Wrinkle in Time

3. I remember lying in the snow, a small red spot of warm going cold, surrounded by wolves. -Maggie Stiefvater, Shiver (P)

4. When I wake up, the other side of the bed is cold. -Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games

5. I don’t believe in ghosts. -Gillian Shields, Immortal (P)

6. The tree woman choked on poison, the slow sap of her blood burning. -Holly Black, Valiant (P)

7. Chauncey was with a farmer’s daughter on the grassy banks of the Loire River when the storm rolled in, and having let his gelding wander in the meadow, was left to his own two feet to carry him back to the chateau. -Becca Fitzpatrick, Hush, Hush (P)

8. Blood fills my mouth. -Bree Despain, The Dark Divine (P)

9. In these dungeons the darkness was complete, but Katsa had a map in her mind. -Kristin Cashore, Graceling

10. Her parents were going to kill her for this. -Carrie Vaughn, Voices of Dragons

11. Just when I thought my day couldn’t get any worse I saw the dead guy standing next to my locker. -P. C. Cast & Kristin Cast, Marked

12. On the day Claire became a member of the Glass House, somebody stole her laundry. -Rachel Caine, Glass Houses

13. Mommy forgot to warn the new babysitter about the basement. -Kelley Armstrong, The Summoning (P)

14. Janie Hannagan’s math book slips from her fingers. -Lisa McMann, Wake

15. Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. -J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

16. “Please tell me that’s not going to be part of my birthday dinner this evening.” -Libba Bray, A Great and Terrible Beauty

17. There were only two kinds of people in our town. -Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl, Beautiful Creatures

18. Around midnight, her eyes at last took shape. -Lauren Kate, Fallen (P)

19. Torrential rain was pouring the afternoon Rebecca Brown arrived in New Orleans. -Paula Morris, Ruined

20. Dad had Uncle Eddie round, so naturally they had to come and see what I was up to. -Louise Rennison, Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging

21. It didn’t take long for Phoebe to figure out Jeremy wasn’t coming back for her. -MINE!

22. “Guess who?” -Alyson Noel, Evermore

23. Someone was looking at me, a disturbing sensation if you’re dead. -Laura Whitcomb, A Certain Slant of Light

24. Some things start before other things. -Terry Pratchett, The Wee Free Men

25. Flames shot high, turning the night lurid with carnival light. -Annette Curtis Klause, Blood and Chocolate (P)

26. Everyone’s seen my mother naked. -Elizabeth Scott, Something, Maybe

27. Jason was going to Brain Camp. -Sarah Dessen, The Truth About Forever

28. I’d never given much thought to how I would die – though I’d had reason enough in the last few months – but even if I had, I would not have imagined it like this. -Stephenie Meyer, Twilight (P)

29. My mother used to tell me about the ocean. -Carrie Ryan, The Forest of Hands and Teeth

30. There are these bizarre people who actually like physical education class. -Carrie Jones, Captivate

So there they are. Happy Monday! It’s going to be a beautiful week!

First Sentences in YA Lit

Here are 30 first sentences. Do you know the books they go to? If you know what I’ve been reading lately you’ll have an advantage, but I threw a few old favorites in just to keep you guessing. Um, obviously if the suspense is killing you it’s easy enough to find the answers online (which is why this isn’t a contest, just an excuse to use the information from my first-line notebook). I’ll post the authors & book titles on Monday.

The interesting part of this exercise is the discovery that some first lines are definite hooks. I know which ones I think are amazing, and I know which ones, well, aren’t. And there are a few that are not winning first sentences, but if you stick around for the rest of the paragraph–Wow (I’m thinking specifically of #17 when I write this).

Take a guess if you feel like it, or just enjoy!

1. We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck.

2. It was a dark and stormy night.

3. I remember lying in the snow, a small red spot of warm going cold, surrounded by wolves.

4. When I wake up, the other side of the bed is cold.

5. I don’t believe in ghosts.

6. The tree woman choked on poison, the slow sap of her blood burning.

7. Chauncey was with a farmer’s daughter on the grassy banks of the Loire River when the storm rolled in, and having let his gelding wander in the meadow, was left to his own two feet to carry him back to the chateau.

8. Blood fills my mouth.

9. In these dungeons the darkness was complete, but Katsa had a map in her mind.

10. Her parents were going to kill her for this.

11. Just when I thought my day couldn’t get any worse I saw the dead guy standing next to my locker.

12. On the day Claire became a member of the Glass House, somebody stole her laundry.

13. Mommy forgot to warn the new babysitter about the basement.

14. Janie Hannagan’s math book slips from her fingers.

15. Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.

16. “Please tell me that’s not going to be part of my birthday dinner this evening.”

17. There were only two kinds of people in our town.

18. Around midnight, her eyes at last took shape.

19. Torrential rain was pouring the afternoon Rebecca Brown arrived in New Orleans.

20. Dad had Uncle Eddie round, so naturally they had to come and see what I was up to.

21. It didn’t take Phoebe long to figure out Jeremy wasn’t coming back for her.

22. “Guess who?”

23. Someone was looking at me, a disturbing sensation if you’re dead. 

24. Some things start before other things.

25. Flames shot high, turning the night lurid with carnival light.

26. Everyone’s seen my mother naked. 

27. Jason was going to Brain Camp. 

28. I’d never given much thought to how I would die – though I’d had reason enough in the last few months – but even if I had, I would not have imagined it like this.

29. My mother used to tell me about the ocean. 

30. There are these bizarre people who actually like physical education class.

Author Friends: I’d love to read your first sentences, too! Post them below.