Top 5 Tuesday || Opening Lines

Top 5 Tuesday banner displaying a hand with five rings

The opening line of a book can make or break an entire story.

That first line is the first impression a book makes on a reader. Sometimes, it’s not the end all, be all, but other times, it packs a punch you can’t ignore. Thankfully, we get to appreciate opening lines a little extra right now, since Shanah @ Bionic Bookworm Blog chose them as the focus of today’s T5T prompt!

And yes, one of them on the list is a V.E. Schwab line. You all knew this was coming. But the rest? Read on and find out!

“Line” (The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch)

The Lies of Locke Lamora Cover

“At the height of the long wet summer of the seventy-seventh Year of Sendovani, the Thiefmaker of Camorr paid a sudden and unannounced visit to the Eyeless Priest at the Temple of Perelandro, desperately hoping to sell him the Lamora boy.”

“Line” (The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud)

The Screaming Staircase Cover

“Of the first few hauntings I investigated with Lockwood & Co. I intend to say little in part to protect the identity of the victims, in part because of the gruesome nature of the incidents, but mainly because, in a variety of ingenious ways, we succeeded in messing them all up.”

“Line” (The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen)

The Merciful Crow Cover

“Pa was taking too long to cut the boys’ throats.”

“Line” (There Will Come a Darkness by Katy Rose Pool)

There Will Come a Darkness Cover

“In the moonlight room overlooking the City of Faith, a priest knelt before Ephyra and begged for his life.”

“Line” (A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab)

A Darker Shade of Magic Cover

“Kell wore a very peculiar coat.”


For one reason or another, all of these opening lines hold a special place in my heart. Some are charming, some are grim, some are both or neither, but all of them do the spectacular hard work of hooking the reader from the start. For a couple, it’s a gentle hook, a soft beckoning. For others, it’s grabbing you by the collar of your shirt and hauling you straight in.

Folks, I love opening lines so much. 💕

11 thoughts on “Top 5 Tuesday || Opening Lines

  1. I haven’t read any of these but these openers are so GOOD. I agree opening lines are so important. The first line of a book should show me what to expect from the book. It should represent the mood, tone, atmosphere in my opinion.

    1. You’re absolutely right! If the opening line doesn’t fit the vibe of the book, then there’s always going to be a disconnect.

    1. DO IT OMG The Merciful Crow was one of my best reads from last year. The prose is so SHARP and the concept is outstanding. Please pick it up!

Leave a Reply