Laura Parkinson (stormfeather) wrote,
Laura Parkinson

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Book Meme Revisited

Since I ended up mostly including blatantly obvious books on my previous attempt at this, as it turned out, I semi-promised to do another one "soon." So... here goes. (Instructions semi-cut-and-pasted)...

What you do is take 15 books off your shelf (or more, or less, as you prefer). Then open them up, and write down the very first three sentences in each. Then other people try to guess the book. As people guess them, I'll bold them and put the who guessed it after the lines. Then in a few days (or whenever all of them are guessed), I'll repost the list, with the answers and those who got them right.

This time around, there are still a few that are probably gonna be fairly easily guessed, and some that are complete gimmes if you're familiar with the work, but others should (hopefully!) be a bit more obscure, due to either people not reading them or the openings being quite unmemorable. We'll see.

1. I intensely disliked my father's fifth wife, but not to the point of murder. I, the fruit of his second ill-considered gallop up the aisle, had gone dutifully to the next two of his subsequent nuptials, the changes of "mother" punctuating my life at six and fourteen. At thirty, however, I'd revolted: wild horses couldn't have dragged me to witness his wedding to the sharp-eyed, honey-tongued Moira, his fifth choice.

2*. It was a beautiful morning at the end of November. During the night it had snowed, but only a little, and the earth was covered with a cool blanket no more than three fingers high. In the darkness, immediately after lauds, we heard Mass in a village in the valley.

3. It begins, as most things begin, with a song. In the beginning, after all, were the words, and they came with a tune. That was how the world was made, how the void was divided, how the lands and the stars and the dreams and the little gods and the animals, how all of them came into the world. - guessed by fishmoon

4. She came out of the store just in time to see her young son playing on the sidewalk directly in the path of the gray, gaunt man who strode down the center of the walk like a mechanical derelict. For an instant, her heart quailed. Then she jumped forward, gripped her son by the arm, snatched him out of harm's way. - partial credit so far to fishmoon

5. On the 24th of February, 1815, the watch-tower of Notre-Dame de la Garde signalled the arrival of the three-master Pharoan, from Smyrna, Trieste, and Naples. The usual crowd of curious spectators immediately filled the quay of Fort Saint-Jean, for at Marseilles the arrival of a ship is always a great event, especially when that ship, as was the case with the Pharaon, has been build, rigged, and laden in the dockyard of old Phocaea and belongs to a shipowner of their own town. Meanwhile the vessel drew on, and was approaching the harbour under topsails, jib, and foresail, but so slowly and with such an air of melancholy that the spectators, always ready to sense misfortune, began to ask one another what ill-luck had overtaken those on board. - guessed by fishmoon

6. In the land of Ingary, where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, it is quite a misfortune to be born the eldest of three. Everyone knows you are the one who will fail first, and worst, if the three of you set out to seek your fortunes. Sophie Hatter was the eldest of three sisters. - guessed by fishmoon

7. The setting sun was staining the far reaches of the plain, its hue closer to blood than vermillion. The wind snarled like a beast across the barren sky. On the narrow road that cut through a sea of grass, high enough to hide all below the man's ankles, the lone horse and rider ceased their advance as if forestalled by the wall of wind gusting straight at them.

8**. 3 May. Bistritz. - Left Munich at 8:35 p.m. on 1st May, arriving at Vienna early next morning; should have arrived at 6:46, but train was an hour late. Buda-Pesth seems a wonderful place, from the glimpse which I got of it from the train and the little I could walk through the streets. I feared to go very far from the station, as we had arrived late and would start as near the correct time as possible. Guessed by pokeypenguin

9. How to explain? How to describe? Even the omniscient viewpoint quails.

10. Tika Waylan straightened her back with a sigh, flexing her shoulders to ease her cramped muscles. She tossed the soapy bar rag into the water pail and glanced around the empty room. It was getting harder to keep up the old inn. Guessed by pokeypenguin

11. Mouldering bone crumbled beneath their boots as Lord Mardus and Vargul Ashnazai lowered themselves down into the tiny chamber beneath the earthen mound. Oblivious to the pervasive odor of swamp and old death, to the dank earth filtering down the back of his neck and into his hair, Mardus crunched across more bones to a rough stone slab at the back of the chamber. Brushing aside brittle ribs and skulls, he reverently lifted a small pouch from the stone. - guessed by fishmoon

12. He came one late, wet spring, and brought the wide world back to my doorstep. I was thirty-five that year. When I was twenty, I would have considered a man of my current age to be teetering on the verge of dotage.

13. I stood in the shadows of a deserted shop front across from the Blood and Brew Pub, trying not to be obvious as I tugged my black leather pants back up where they belonged. This is pathetic, I thought, eyeing the rain-emptied street. I was way too good for this.

14*. Ninety-eight-ninety-nine-one-hundred." Gloria withdrew her chubby little forearm from before her eyes and stood for a moment, wrinkling her nose and blinking in the sunlight. Then, trying to watch in all directions at once, she withdrew a few cautious steps from the tree against which she had been leaning.

15. If you want to find Cherry-Tree Lane all you have to do is ask the Policeman at the cross-roads. He will push his helmet slightly to one side, scratch his head thoughtfully, and then he will point his huge white-gloved finger and say: "First to your right, second to your left, sharp right again, and you're there. Good-morning." - guessed by reesei

* For #2 and #14, I skipped the prologue, despite it probably technically being a part of the story. I did include the first sentences from the prologue elsewhere. A bit of a judgement call, mostly depending on how much a part of the story it is.

** For #8 I included the starting notation to be more exact, but didn't count them as sentences despite being marked with periods.

Well, hope y'all enjoy!
Tags: books, memes
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