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  #51  
Old 04-20-2017, 11:23 PM
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Recently I'm trying a thing where I read a bunch of books at once, and switch between them more-or-less at random. Results are mixed so far. But I'll go ahead and post the first sentences of what I have currently open...

"No one could say he hadn't been warned."
--Matt Ruff, Sewer, Gas & Electric: The Public Works Trilogy



"Every inch of wall space is covered by a bookcase."
--Eliezer Yudkowsky, Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (this one is a fourth or fifth re-read)



"In London, where Southampton Row passes Russell Square, across from the British Museum in Bloomsbury, Leo Szilard waited irritably one gray Depression morning for the stoplight to change."
--Richard Rhodes, The Making of the Atomic Bomb (25th Anniversary Edition)



"The first time Caesar approached Cora about running north, she said no."
--Colson Whitehead, The Underground Railroad



"I remember throwing away a child."
-- Kameron Hurley, The Stars are Legion



Holy crap, this next one is a long sentence. Which is very representative of the way Ada Palmer has been writing this book so far. Weird, but interesting.

"You will criticize me, reader, for writing in a style six hundred years removed from the events I describe, but you came to me for explanation of those days of transformation which left your world the world it is, and since it was the philosophy of the Eighteenth Century, heavy with optimism and ambition, whose abrupt revival birthed the recent revolution, so it is only in the language of the Enlightenment, rich with opinion and sentiment, that those days can be described."
--Ada Palmer, Too Like the Lightning




"On our wedding day I was forty-six, she was eighteen."
--George Saunders, Lincoln in the Bardo
  #52  
Old 04-20-2017, 11:51 PM
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No biography of Hubert de Burgh has ever been written.

From Clarence Ellis' 1952 biography of Hubert de Burgh .
  #53  
Old 04-21-2017, 12:25 AM
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"These days, if you are a German, you spend your time in Purgatory before you die, in earthly suffering for all your country's unrepented and unpunished sins, until the day when, with the aid of the prayers of the Powers--or three of them, anyway--Germany is finally purified."

From A German Requiem, by Phillip Kerr, set in Berlin in 1947
  #54  
Old 04-21-2017, 09:51 AM
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The sun did not shine.

--D. Seuss
Ooh, don't miss the sequel!
  #55  
Old 04-21-2017, 10:14 AM
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Recently I'm trying a thing where I read a bunch of books at once, and switch between them more-or-less at random. Results are mixed so far. But I'll go ahead and post the first sentences of what I have currently open...
"No one could say he hadn't been warned. And then the murders began."

"Every inch of wall space is covered by a bookcase. And then the murders began."

"In London, where Southampton Row passes Russell Square, across from the British Museum in Bloomsbury, Leo Szilard waited irritably one gray Depression morning for the stoplight to change. And then the murders began."

"The first time Caesar approached Cora about running north, she said no. And then the murders began."

"I remember throwing away a child. And then the murders began."

"You will criticize me, reader, for writing in a style six hundred years removed from the events I describe, but you came to me for explanation of those days of transformation which left your world the world it is, and since it was the philosophy of the Eighteenth Century, heavy with optimism and ambition, whose abrupt revival birthed the recent revolution, so it is only in the language of the Enlightenment, rich with opinion and sentiment, that those days can be described. And then the murders began."

"On our wedding day I was forty-six, she was eighteen. And then the murders began."

Oh, wait--wrong thread.

Last edited by Darren Garrison; 04-21-2017 at 10:15 AM.
  #56  
Old 04-21-2017, 10:16 AM
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Recently I'm trying a thing where I read a bunch of books at once, and switch between them more-or-less at random. Results are mixed so far. But I'll go ahead and post the first sentences of what I have currently open...
That's how I normally read. It's just too much of a hassle with a kindle to go back to the first page and then get back to the right spot, unless I'm dumb and am just not seeing how to do it easily.
  #57  
Old 04-21-2017, 10:22 AM
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''Readers are like fish.''

Structuring Your Novel by KM Weiland.
  #58  
Old 04-21-2017, 10:39 AM
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Holy crap, this next one is a long sentence. Which is very representative of the way Ada Palmer has been writing this book so far. Weird, but interesting.

"You will criticize me, reader, for writing in a style six hundred years removed from the events I describe, but you came to me for explanation of those days of transformation which left your world the world it is, and since it was the philosophy of the Eighteenth Century, heavy with optimism and ambition, whose abrupt revival birthed the recent revolution, so it is only in the language of the Enlightenment, rich with opinion and sentiment, that those days can be described."
--Ada Palmer, Too Like the Lightning
I can beat it:

"'After an absence of nearly two years,' Jefferson Davis told the legislators assembled under the golden dome of his home-state capitol on the day after Christmas, 1862--twenty months and two weeks, to the day, since the guns of Charlestown opened fire on Sumter to inaugurate the civil war no one could know was not yet halfway over--'I again find myself among those who, from the days of my childhood, have ever been the trusted objects of my affection, those for whose good I have ever striven and whose interests I have sometimes hoped I may have contributed to subserve.'"

--From volume 2 of Shelby Foote's 3-volume The Civil War. Actually not atypical of the kind of complex sentences Foote writes.
  #59  
Old 04-21-2017, 10:47 AM
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I can beat it:

"'After an absence of nearly two years,' Jefferson Davis told the legislators assembled under the golden dome of his home-state capitol on the day after Christmas, 1862--twenty months and two weeks, to the day, since the guns of Charlestown opened fire on Sumter to inaugurate the civil war no one could know was not yet halfway over--'I again find myself among those who, from the days of my childhood, have ever been the trusted objects of my affection, those for whose good I have ever striven and whose interests I have sometimes hoped I may have contributed to subserve.'"

--From volume 2 of Shelby Foote's 3-volume The Civil War. Actually not atypical of the kind of complex sentences Foote writes.
Too bad no one's reading Absalom, Absalom!
  #60  
Old 04-21-2017, 11:11 AM
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"The jewel garden really began in the spring of 1981, when we started the jewellery business."

from The Jewel Garden by Monty and Sarah Don.
  #61  
Old 04-21-2017, 11:51 AM
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Ooh, don't miss the sequel!
Don't spoil it for me.

...but, I'm guessing the protagonist comes back?
  #62  
Old 04-21-2017, 12:02 PM
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"To Athene then. Young Gnossos Pappadopoulis, furry Pooh Bear, keeper of the flame, voyaged back from the asphalt seas of the great wasted land: oh highways U.S. 40 and unyielding 66, I am home to the glacier-gnawed gorges, the fingers of lakes, the golden girls of Westchester and Shaker Heights."

-- Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me, by Richard Farina
Abandonned. I seem to remember absolutely loving this book back in the day, but now I find it just about unreadable.

New first sentence: "Forty-one years after I died, my friend Dale returned to the farm where I was murdered." A Winter Haunting, by Dan Simmons
  #63  
Old 04-21-2017, 02:57 PM
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-The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen.
  #64  
Old 04-21-2017, 03:51 PM
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"In the morning they gave Reacher a medal, and in the afternoon they sent him back to school."

Should be an easy one to guess.
  #65  
Old 04-21-2017, 04:44 PM
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A short story:

"Bob Wilson did not see the circle grow"
  #66  
Old 04-21-2017, 05:45 PM
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"If you look as satellite photographs of the far east by night, you’ll see a large splotch
curiously lacking in light. "

from "Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea" by Barbara Demik.
  #67  
Old 04-21-2017, 05:50 PM
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"Stephen Whitler Fox could not remember when he had first realized he was going to run for president."

from Act of Darkness a Gregor Demarkian Mystery, by Jane Haddam.
  #68  
Old 04-21-2017, 05:57 PM
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"The boat moved with a nauseous, relentless rhythm, like someone chewing on a rotten tooth."

The Lie Tree, by Frances Hardinge
  #69  
Old 04-21-2017, 06:55 PM
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Here at the Bathroom Readers' Institute, we're suckers for cool facts, and we're constantly quizzing each other.

_Uncle John's Rathroom Reader "Wise Up!"
  #70  
Old 04-21-2017, 07:55 PM
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"The boat moved with a nauseous, relentless rhythm, like someone chewing on a rotten tooth."

The Lie Tree, by Frances Hardinge
Ugh. Vivid.
  #71  
Old 04-22-2017, 06:32 PM
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"No one could say he hadn't been warned. And then the murders began."

"Every inch of wall space is covered by a bookcase. And then the murders began."

"In London, where Southampton Row passes Russell Square, across from the British Museum in Bloomsbury, Leo Szilard waited irritably one gray Depression morning for the stoplight to change. And then the murders began."

"The first time Caesar approached Cora about running north, she said no. And then the murders began."

"I remember throwing away a child. And then the murders began."

"You will criticize me, reader, for writing in a style six hundred years removed from the events I describe, but you came to me for explanation of those days of transformation which left your world the world it is, and since it was the philosophy of the Eighteenth Century, heavy with optimism and ambition, whose abrupt revival birthed the recent revolution, so it is only in the language of the Enlightenment, rich with opinion and sentiment, that those days can be described. And then the murders began."

"On our wedding day I was forty-six, she was eighteen. And then the murders began."

Oh, wait--wrong thread.
Nice. Seems to work pretty well for several of them. Now I wish I had posted the little "teaser" that is before the first sentence of Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality:

Quote:
Beneath the moonlight glints a tiny fragment of silver, a fraction of a line...

(black robes, falling)

... blood spills out in litres, and someone screams a word.
Although then the appending of "and then the murders began" might even be a step down.
  #72  
Old 04-22-2017, 09:43 PM
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"For sixty-five days, the Mayflower had blundered her way through storms and headwinds, her bottom a saggy pelt of seaweed and barnacles, her leaky decks spewing saltwater onto her passengers' devoted heads."

Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War
by Nathaniel Philbrick
© 2006 by Nathaniel Philbrick

Highly recommended to all you history buffs out there.
  #73  
Old 04-22-2017, 11:05 PM
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"Even though feeling like a drama queen sucked donkey's balls, it was still true -- leaving Dragos and New York behind was one of the hardest things Pia had ever done."

Lord's Fall, Thea Harrison
  #74  
Old 04-23-2017, 02:04 PM
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This time there would be no witnesses.
  #75  
Old 04-24-2017, 12:41 AM
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"Virgil Earp was determined to sleep in on Wednesday, October 26, 1881."

The Last Gunfight-- Jeff Guinn
  #76  
Old 04-24-2017, 10:59 AM
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"Deep in Honduras, in a region called La Mosquitia, lie some of the last unexplored places on earth."
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  #77  
Old 04-24-2017, 12:27 PM
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"Nine months Landsman's been flopping at the Hotel Zamenhof without any of his fellow residents managing to get themselves murdered."

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  #78  
Old 04-24-2017, 08:14 PM
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"At dusk they pour from the sky."

All the Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr
  #79  
Old 04-24-2017, 08:20 PM
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"It was a dark and stormy night..."

No, really. That's the first sentence.
  #80  
Old 04-24-2017, 09:44 PM
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"The following pages are a compilation transcribed from petabytes of analyzed text, audio, and video recovered from Hub sensor Big Iron."

Tomorrow War by J.L. Bourne
  #81  
Old 04-25-2017, 05:49 AM
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"If there was any doubt at the turn of the twentieth century, by the turn of the twenty-first, it was a foregone conclusion: when it comes to revealing the true nature of reality, common experience is deceptive."

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  #82  
Old 04-25-2017, 05:55 AM
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BTW, I like Darren Garrison's game -- makes my entry (and those of many others) pretty funny. But not Max Torque's.

Last edited by JKellyMap; 04-25-2017 at 05:57 AM.
  #83  
Old 04-25-2017, 06:39 AM
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"It did not seem a night for revolution."

Duce! by Richard Collier, copyright 1971.
  #84  
Old 04-25-2017, 08:34 AM
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Varney the Vampyre, it's plennie dreadful


The solemn tones of an old cathedral clock have announced midnight - the air is thick and heavy - a strange, death like stillness pervades all nature.

A fun if somewhat tortuous Dickens like novel, by James Malcom Rymer
  #85  
Old 04-25-2017, 09:50 AM
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"You will develop a palate."

Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler.


The second sentence: "A palate is a spot on your tongue where you remember."
  #86  
Old 04-25-2017, 09:58 AM
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The Magician's Land by Lev Grossman
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Old 04-25-2017, 10:13 AM
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Rape of the A. P. E. (American Puritan Ethic : The Official History of the Sex Revolution, 1945-1973 : The Obscening of America, an R. S. V. P.) by Allan Sherman.
  #88  
Old 04-25-2017, 10:51 AM
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The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A Fuck - Mark Manson
  #89  
Old 04-25-2017, 11:02 AM
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- The Immortal Irishman (Biography of Thomas Francis Meagher)
by Timothy Egan
  #90  
Old 04-25-2017, 11:32 AM
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Gibbon's Decline and Fall. I absolutely love it. In 50-odd years of serious reading this is my third time round.
  #91  
Old 04-25-2017, 11:53 AM
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"I wanted darkness."

Lords of the North by Bernard Cornwell. Book 3 of the Saxon series, an excellent read.
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Old 04-25-2017, 01:05 PM
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I've never read "Flowers for Algernon" but somehow I know everything that's going to happen. Taking a break from re-reading Pratchett and King.
  #93  
Old 07-03-2017, 07:40 AM
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-from John Quincy Adams (A Public Life, A Private Life) by Paul C. Nagel.


mmm
  #94  
Old 07-03-2017, 07:52 AM
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  #95  
Old 07-03-2017, 09:59 AM
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  #96  
Old 07-03-2017, 12:52 PM
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"When Patricia was six years old, she found a wounded bird."

All the Birds in the Sky, by Charlie Jane Anders
  #97  
Old 07-03-2017, 01:27 PM
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"When Henry Robinson Luce looked down on the muddy Yangtze on October 6, 1945, he had reason to feel exultation in the consummation of one of the great dreams of his life."

-- from Luce and His Empire, by W. A. Swanberg.
  #98  
Old 07-03-2017, 01:42 PM
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  #99  
Old 07-03-2017, 02:20 PM
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"The letter, several pages in length and signed by Secretary of the Navy George M. Robeson, was addressed to Commander Thomas O. Selfridge."

From The Path Between the Seas, David McCullough's terrific history of the building of the Panama Canal
  #100  
Old 07-04-2017, 12:18 AM
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