#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Name of Our Winner!

Sorry to be so late announcing our winners today. Lost internet reception for a bit, but all is well again, and yes, submissions for #FirstLineFriday are officially closed. My thanks to all who emailed me with their guesses. Today, we have one winner: Priscilla Bettis.  Congratulations, Priscilla, and I hope you enjoy your prize.

And now, here’s the answer to today’s quiz:

“Mr. Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance, that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary, and yet somehow lovable.” is the opening line from The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson.

The novella was written by Stevenson in 1886, and has been adapted for film and stage many times over the years.

Dr. Henry Jekyll and his alternate personality, Mr. Edward Hyde, is the central character and is a good friend of main protagonist Gabriel John Utterson. Jekyll is a kind and respected English doctor who has repressed evil urges inside of him. In an attempt to hide this, he develops a type of serum that he believes will effectively mask his dark side. Instead, Jekyll transforms into Edward Hyde, the physical and mental manifestation of his evil personality. This process happens more regularly until Jekyll becomes unable to control when the transformations occur.

AMAZON BLURB

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is the title of a novella written by the Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson that was first published in 1886. The work is commonly known today as The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, or simply Jekyll & Hyde. It is about a London lawyer named Gabriel John Utterson who investigates strange occurrences between his old friend, Dr. Henry Jekyll, and the evil Edward Hyde. The work is commonly associated with the rare mental condition often called “split personality,” referred to in psychiatry as dissociative identity disorder, where within the same body there exists more than one distinct personality. In this case, there are two personalities within Dr. Jekyll, one apparently good and the other evil. The novella’s impact is such that it has become a part of the language, with the very phrase “Jekyll and Hyde” coming to mean a person who is vastly different in moral character from one situation to the next.

A classic that continues to be referenced today, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde will forever be locked in literary history.

Buy The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde HERE

That wraps it up for this week, folks. Thanks so much for taking part, and I hope you’ll stay tuned for another #FirstLineFriday quiz next week. See you then!

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

Welcome once again to #FirstLineFriday, a little quiz designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. From the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, everything is fair game.

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and authorof the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog.Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S.may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewheremay request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! I’m predicting this one will be a challenge, but I love it so much, I can’t resist. And besides, my predictions haven’t been right yet, so who knows? Either way, here’s today’s opening line: 

“Mr. Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance, that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary, and yet somehow lovable.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Name of Our Winner!

Yep, you read that right, folks. Only ONE winner today, and I’m pretty happy to have one at all. As usual, I never know what’s going to happen when I post a first line. I thought this one would have folks jumping up and down, waving their hands in the air, and going, “Ooooh, ooooh! Pick me!” But nope. Only one person took a guess, but that person was absolutely right, so congratulations to Pat Stuckey! Way to go, Pat! 😊

Now, without further ado, here’s the answer you’ve all been waiting for:

“This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it.” is the opening line from The Princess Bride by William Goldman. 

 The Princess Bride is a 1973 fantasy romance novel by American writer William Goldman. The book combines elements of comedy, adventure, fantasy, drama, romance, and fairy tale. It is presented as an abridgment (or “the good parts version”) of a longer work by S. Morgenstern, and Goldman’s “commentary” asides are constant throughout. It was originally published in the United States by Harcourt Brace, then later by Random House, while in the United Kingdom it was later published by Bloomsbury.

The book was adapted into a 1987 feature film directed by Rob Reiner from a screenplay written by Goldman himself.

William Goldman said, “I’ve gotten more responses on The Princess Bride than on everything else I’ve done put together—all kinds of strange outpouring letters. Something in The Princess Bride affects people.”

AMAZON SAYS

Here William Goldman’s beloved story of Buttercup, Westley, and their fellow adventurers finally receives a beautiful illustrated treatment.

A tale of true love and high adventure, pirates, princesses, giants, miracles, fencing, and a frightening assortment of wild beasts—The Princess Bride is a modern storytelling classic.

As Florin and Guilder teeter on the verge of war, the reluctant Princess Buttercup is devastated by the loss of her true love, kidnapped by a mercenary and his henchman, rescued by a pirate, forced to marry Prince Humperdinck, and rescued once again by the very crew who absconded with her in the first place. In the course of this dazzling adventure, she’ll meet Vizzini—the criminal philosopher who’ll do anything for a bag of gold; Fezzik—the gentle giant; Inigo—the Spaniard whose steel thirsts for revenge; and Count Rugen—the evil mastermind behind it all. Foiling all their plans and jumping into their stories is Westley, Princess Buttercup’s one true love and a very good friend of a very dangerous pirate.

Buy The Princess Bride HERE

And there you have it. Hope you enjoyed playing this week, even though this seems to have been much more difficult than I imagined. Stay tuned for next week, though. You never know what I’ll pick from my various lists of Top 100 Titles. It just might be YOUR favorite book! See you then!

 

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

Welcome once again to #FirstLineFriday, a little quiz designed to help us appreciate some of the best opening lines in literary history. From the classics of long ago to the latest best-sellers, everything is fair game.

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and authorof the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog.Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S.may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! (Hopefully, this one will be a bit easier for many of you.) Here’s today’s opening line: 

“This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz.

I had a feeling this one was going to stump a lot of people, but as I promised, this is a book I’d bet that every single one of you has at least heard of. For some reason, it appealed to my wicked sense of humor to use a line from a very well-known book, but which would probably fool all of us, me included. I was willing to be wrong and give away some downloads today, but alas. I called it correctly. Sorry to say we have no winners.

So with that in mind, are you ready to find out which very famous book none of us can recognize from the opening line? Okay. Here goes.

“You will rejoice to hear that no disaster has accompanied the commencement of an enterprise which you have regarded with such evil forebodings.” is the opening line from Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus written by English author Mary Shelley though first published anonymously in 1818. Her name did not appear until the second edition published in Paris in 1821.

Frankenstein is infused with elements of the Gothic novel and the Romantic movement. Brian Aldiss has argued that it should be considered the first true science fiction story because, in contrast to previous stories with fantastical elements resembling those of later science fiction, the central character “makes a deliberate decision” and “turns to modern experiments in the laboratory” to achieve fantastic results. It has had a considerable influence in literature and popular culture and spawned a complete genre of horror stories, films and plays.

Since the novel’s publication, the name “Frankenstein” has often been used to refer to the monster itself. In the novel, Frankenstein’s creation is identified by words such as creature, monster, fiend, and wretch, but it is the monster’s creator who is correctly identified as Victor Frankenstein. 

There are many editions of this book available on Amazon, but I chose to use the one featuring what most of us think of when we discuss the book or, more likely, one of the many film adaptations. No one can forget Boris Karloff as Frankenstein’s monster, I’m sure.

AMAZON BLURB:

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, is a novel written by English author Mary Shelley about the young student of science Victor Frankenstein, who creates a grotesque but sentient creature in an unorthodox scientific experiment. Shelley started writing the story when she was eighteen, and the novel was published when she was twenty.

Shelley had travelled through Europe in 1814, journeying along the river Rhine in Germany with a stop in Gernsheim which is just 17 km (10 mi) away from Frankenstein Castle, where two centuries before an alchemist was engaged in experiments. Later, she travelled in the region of Geneva (Switzerland)—where much of the story takes place—and the topics of galvanism and other similar occult ideas were themes of conversation among her companions, particularly her lover and future husband, Percy Shelley. Mary, Percy, Lord Byron, and John Polidori decided to have a competition to see who could write the best horror story. After thinking for days, Shelley dreamt about a scientist who created life and was horrified by what he had made; her dream later evolved into the story within the novel.

BUY Frankenstein HERE

And that’s it for this week, folks. (See? I told you this was a book familiar to all of us. I’ve even read it. More than once, back in my misspent youth. But be darned if I recognized that opening line.) Next week, I promise to go easier on you! Hope you’ll join me then for another #FirstLineFriday.

 

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

Sometimes it takes a while to get here, but sooner or later, it’s Friday again, and time for another #FirstLineFriday quiz. Today, I’ve picked an opening line which amuses me, and I’m going to enjoy seeing how many of you recognize it. Let’s play!

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and authorof the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog.Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answerswhichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S.may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewheremay request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Here’s today’s opening line: 

“You will rejoice to hear that no disaster has accompanied the commencement of an enterprise which you have regarded with such evil forebodings.” 

There you have it. Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses.

 

#FirstLineFriday Submissions Are Now Closed! Here’s the Answer to Our Quiz, and the Names of Our Winners!

The good news is, we’ve already had FIVE winners this week! The bad news is, this means submissions are now closed for today’s quiz. But congratulations to our winners: Jeanne Owens, Joan Hall, Darlene Foster, Mae Clair, and Trish Power. Thanks for playing!

Hope everyone enjoyed this week’s first line, even if it was totally unfamiliar to some. But take it from me, it really is a classic line from a classic book, by a very famous author. And it contained an important clue, too.

“To the red country and part of the gray country of Oklahoma, the last rains came gently, and they did not cut the scarred earth.” is the opening line from The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck.

The Grapes of Wrath is an American realist novel written by John Steinbeck and published in 1939. The book won the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and it was cited prominently when Steinbeck was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962.

Set during the Great Depression, the novel focuses on the Joads, a poor family of tenant farmers driven from their Oklahoma home by drought, economic hardship, agricultural industry changes, and bank foreclosures forcing tenant farmers out of work. Due to their nearly hopeless situation, and in part because they are trapped in the Dust Bowl, the Joads set out for California along with thousands of other “Okies” seeking jobs, land, dignity, and a future.

The Grapes of Wrath is frequently read in American high school and college literature classes due to its historical context and enduring legacy. A celebrated Hollywood film version, starring Henry Fonda and directed by John Ford, was released in 1940.

 

AMAZON BLURB: 

The Pulitzer Prize-winning epic of the Great Depression, a book that galvanized—and sometimes outraged—millions of readers. Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read

A Penguin Classic:

First published in 1939, Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize-winning epic of the Great Depression chronicles the Dust Bowl migration of the 1930s and tells the story of one Oklahoma farm family, the Joads—driven from their homestead and forced to travel west to the promised land of California. Out of their trials and their repeated collisions against the hard realities of an America divided into Haves and Have-Nots evolves a drama that is intensely human yet majestic in its scale and moral vision, elemental yet plainspoken, tragic but ultimately stirring in its human dignity. A portrait of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, of one man’s fierce reaction to injustice, and of one woman’s stoical strength, the novel captures the horrors of the Great Depression and probes into the very nature of equality and justice in America. At once a naturalistic epic, captivity narrative, road novel, and transcendental gospel, Steinbeck’s powerful landmark novel is perhaps the most American of American Classics.

This Penguin Classics edition contains an introduction and notes by Steinbeck scholar Robert Demott.

You can buy The Grapes of Wrath HERE

Thanks so much for playing this week, and I hope you’ll join us next time for another #FirstLineFriday challenge. See you then!

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

Yep, it’s Friday again, and time for another #FirstLineFriday quiz. I’ve chosen something I think might be easier for some of you, but then again, I’ve never guessed right about that yet, so why would it happen today? 😊  Once again, I hope you enjoy this chance to study another opening line considered to be one of the greatest in many Top 100 lists!

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at 4:00pm, with the title and author of the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog. Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at 4:00 P.M. EST, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S. may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewhere may request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for! Here’s today’s opening line: 

“To the red country and part of the gray country of Oklahoma, the last rains came gently, and they did not cut the scarred earth.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses. 

#News #AlertTheMedia #FirstLineFriday Quiz is Now Open Longer!

This just in from management (me): I’ve been thinking about extending #FirstLineFriday’s deadline for submissions, and today’s post is tricky enough that I think I’ll go ahead and do so. From this point on, the quiz will run until 4:00pm EST or until I receive five correct answers. That way, some of you who aren’t able to check it out until a bit later will have more of a chance to play, unless I’ve already gotten all five winners. (That doesn’t happen often.) 

SO, today’s quiz will not close until 4:00pm or those answers all come rolling in. Have fun!! 

#FirstLineFriday #GiveawayContest #FreeDownloads

I love Fridays, because–#FirstLine Quiz! To me, this is about so much more than just a chance to win a free download. And I hope you all enjoy it for those extra goodies, like a chance to study some of the greatest opening lines in the history of books! Taking a look at some of them is, I believe, a good way to learn what really works for readers, and thus, might help us write better ones, ourselves.

As always, the rules are simple:

  1. Be one of the first five people to email me before the game ends at noon, with the title and authorof the correct book. 
  2. Do not reply here on the blog.Email only: marciameara16@gmail.com
  3. Honor System applies. No Googling, please.
  4. Submissions end at noon, or when I receive 5 correct answers, whichever comes first.
  5. Winners who live in the U.S.may request a free download of any one of my books for themselves, or for someone of their choice. OR, if they’ve read all of the offered books, they may request a free download of my next publication.
  6. Winners who live elsewheremay request a PDF file of the same books, since, sadly, Amazon won’t let me gift you from the site.

And now, without further ado, here’s this week’s clever opening line:

“Once upon a time, there was a woman who discovered she had turned into the wrong person.” 

Remember, email answers only, please. Thanks! And now off I go to await your guesses.