What's in an opening line?
Some are just ho-hum. Others tickle a reader's imagination. There are some, though, that have drawn me in so fast, so completely, that nothing can make me put down the book until I've found out what's going on.
Take Dakota Cassidy's latest Wolf Mates, Moonlight over Manhasset, just out from Changeling Press. Here's the opening three sentences--three paragraphs, really, but they're short: "Okay, so she had a tail./ Big, damn deal./ Well, it became a big deal if it scared off your potential one time boinks -- especially when the moon was full."
Don't know about you, but this tells me the story's going to be funny, and that part of the fun's going to be that the heroine's a werewolf. It reflects Dakota's inimitable voice and lets me know I want to *read* this just as quick as I can.
Other openings predict a story that's has something serious, maybe dangerous, about to happen. I like the way Cheyenne McCray opened Forbidden Magic, her USA Today bestseller from St. Martin. "Silver Ashcroft slipped through night and shadows, heart pounding and rage simmering." Chey's opening with action, but the sort of action that makes the reader's heart beat faster, anticipating...
Some authors enjoy starting books off with dialogue--I've done this myself, such as in BLACK GOLD: FOREVER ENSLAVED, recently released by Ellora's Cave. “You may leave me, my darling, but you will always be mine. My slave, forever enslaved by the love we share.” My intent here was to spotlight Bear, his torn emotions, his dominant nature and his determination to get back his wife who has just left him. Did it work?
I'm interested in knowing what openings you remember--because they're the ones that are really one-sentence/paragraph hooks. Let's talk about them...