Monday, November 30, 2015

The Classics - Opening Lines: A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d6/Timeless_Books.jpg/320px-Timeless_Books.jpg
"Once on a dark winter's day, when the yellow fog hung so thick and heavy in the streets of London that the lamps were lighted and the shop windows blazed with gas as they do at night, an odd-looking little girl sat in a cab with her father and was driven rather slowly through the big thoroughfares." 
(Published 1905) 

I love the classics and plan to share some "opening lines" over the coming months. Comment if you like, or read for inspiration.
Writing styles were different then, but were they really?

 

20 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. With fog and snow up on the hill this morning where I live, this opening line rang true!

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  2. Oh these sound like such magical lines. Enchanting

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    1. I think enchanting is a good word. Hodgson sets up for a world we have never visited, and the "odd-looking girl" tugs at our hearts, pulling us in.

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  3. I grew up watching the anime of this on tv. It's kind of sweet reading the actual beginning :-)

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    1. Like you, I've only seen the film versions. The lovely beginning makes me want to read more.

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  4. Replies
    1. As writers, I think we can learn a lot from the opening lines of past authors, who were also successful. Thanks for commenting, Sandra.

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  5. Ooh, great opening. I remember getting this book as a kid, but only read parts of it back then, I think. Will have to dig it up sometime to read properly!

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    1. Hi Heather. I was never given this book. Sadly, my reading list as a girl was limited. I didn't start reading the classics until I was about twelve, when my mother ordered a wonderful collection.

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  6. Hi human, Sharon,

    Interesting opening line if you like opening lines that end up being a run-on sentence that makes you feel like you're short on breath or in my case and without using commas I start panting trying to read a run-on sentence! :)

    Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses,

    Penny xx

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    1. Ha-ha. Now Penny, don't get too fussy. I sort of recall there was an animal or two in this story :) Bark a hello to Gary for me!

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  7. Ah! One of my favorite books! And such a great first line. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Thanks Jenni. Glad you stopped by to visit

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  8. Lovely Sharon thank you ... evocative irrespective of time and place ...

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    1. Hi Susan. Time and place matter little, it seems, if the story is universal, which this story is in my opinion.

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  9. I loved and love that book. One of the great stories of all time.

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    1. I'm not surprised you love this story :) Thanks for commenting!

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  10. I've never read the book, but I have seen about 3 different film versions. I especially enjoyed the Shirley Temple version.

    Arlee Bird
    Wrote By Rote

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    1. Nice to hear from you. I've only seen the Shirley Temple version. I love it so much, I can't imagine a better version! (I own most everything Shirley Temple did :)

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