10 Best First Lines in Novels

You shouldn't judge a book by its cover alone. But engaging opening lines can sure pull you in. Here are 10 of our favorites.



  1. Moby Dick by Herman Melville - "Call Me Ishmael."

  2. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison - "I am an invisible man."

  3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife."

  4. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury - "It was pleasure to burn."

  5. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens - "It was the best of time, it was the worst of times."

  6. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez - "It was inevitable: the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love."

  7. Beloved by Toni Morrison - "124 was spiteful."

  8. The Gunslinger by Stephen King - "The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed."

  9. 1984 by George Orwell - "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen."

  10. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak - "Here is a small fact: You are going to die."