First Lines by Nebula Nominees

First Line Friday is a series of blog articles posted on the first Friday of every month. The first line of a story, we’re told, must hook the reader. Implied is that the reader will not buy the book if the first line isn’t great. These first lines by Nebula nominees represent the books and authors who are up for the 57th Annual Nebula Award® for best novel. The awards ceremony will be held later this month. Do these first lines hook you? Do you want to read more?


The first book cover representing the first  lines by Nebula nominees is the Cover of the Unbroken with is in tones of brown, a person with a sword in its scabbard stands in an archway arms stretched out, each braced on pillar with some tall dark non-organic form behind them.

A sandstorm brewed dark and menacing against the Qazali horizon as Lieutenant Touraine and the rest of the Balladairian Colonial Brigade sailed into El-Wast, capital city of Qazali, foremost of Balladaire’s southern colonies.

The Unbroken (Magic of the Lost Book 1) by Cherae Clark

Second book cover representing the first lines by nebula nominees is A Master of Djinn with steampunk gears overhead beyond which is blue sky. Below is a lone figure walking up an opulent and middle eastern looking staircase.

Archibald James Portendorf disliked stairs. With their ludicrous lengths, ever leading up, as if in some jest.”

A Master of Djinn by P. Djèlí Clark 

Third book cover for first lines by nebula nominees is the cover for Machinehood. with a bluish silver background with gears and lines as if it's a computer chip, in the fore ground is a white hairless humanoid robot with a feminine waist.

Welga stared a coffee the color of mud and contemplated the irony of the word smart.”

Machinehood by S.B. Divya 

The cover of A desolation called peace shows a massive triangular window with a diamond shaped framework and a lone man stading in the center looking out at a planet surrounded by a man-made space station-like structure

To think—not language. To not think language. To think we, and not have a  tongue-sound or cry for its crystalline depths.

A Desolation called Peace by Arkady Martine

The world fell flat. The world fell exhausted. The world fell to rainbow-colored static, which rang through Derena’s mind as she ran from her death.

Plague Birds by Jason Sanford

If you liked those first lines, I hope you’ll love this one:

Miranda Clarke guided her yacht, Lady Angelfish, alias Serenity, down the Illinois River, desperate to deliver the package on time.

If I Should Die by Lynette M. Burrows 

Pre-order now at your favorite online book seller.


Clarification

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t make a cent off of the books listed on this page. Usually these titles are pulled at random. They are here for your enjoyment. And to entice you to buy more books.

Do You Want to Read More?

Check out a previous First Line Fridays featuring science fiction books.

What do you think of these first lines by Nebula nominees? You’ll put an enormous smile on my face if you tell me in the comments below—

Have you read any of these books? Which first lines spoke to you? Which ones are now on your TBR list? 

First Lines from Women’s Fiction

Let’s celebrate women’s history month with first lines from women’s fiction. First Line Friday is a series of blog articles posted on the first Friday of every month. The first line of a story, we’re told, must hook the reader. Implied is that the reader will not buy the book if the first line isn’t great. These entries are from Amazon, my personal library, or other online booksellers. Do these first lines hook you? Do you want to read more?


The cover of A Train to Moscow has a graphic of yellow corners and a red pair of red triangles with the tops meeting in the middle form two triangles revealing the profile of a young woman looking  pensive. Its the first book in the first lines from women's fiction blog post.

She immediately knows something is wrong. The door to Marik’s house is ajar, and there is a black car blocking the street just a few meters away.

A Train to Moscow by Elena Gorokhova

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, The Jewish Spy, shows a young woman in a red dress and carrying luggage walk away from the camera down a city street, the buildings are unfamiliar and have Nazi banners hanging at intervals. Two bombers fly overhead in a smoky sky.

Rivka’s whole body ached with nostalgia, even though her husband and children were with her in her home town of Nadvorna to celebrate her forty-second birthday.

The Jewish Spy (World War II Brave Women Fiction)  by Hayuta Katzenelson 

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, These Tangled Vines, shows large stone home on a hilltop in the distance.

The telephone rang and woke me from a dream. I must have been deep in the REM cycle, because I was cognizant of the ringing, but I believed it was part of the dream, so I chose to ignore it.

These Tangled Vines by Julianne MacLean

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, The Woman in the WIndow,has a graphic representing venitian blinds in the foreground with the book title in red behind the blinds.

 Her husband’s almost home. He’ll catch her this time.

The Woman in the Window  by A. J. Finn  

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, The Four winds, shows golden ripe wheat stalks against a black background.

Elsa Wolcott had spent years in enforced solitude, reading fictional adventures and imagining other lives.

The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, Will Women and the Blues, shows a young woman's plunging v neckline in the back of her green dress.

On the fifth floor of the Bronzeville Senior Living Facility, I stand outside the smallest room in the world, doing my best to ignore the dropped ceiling and square linoleum tiles, stoking my claustrophobia.

Wild Women and the Blues by Denny S. Bryce

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, The Vanishing half shows vibrant colors in the shapes of overlapping female faces.

The morning one of the lost twins returned to Mallard, Lou LeBon ran to the diner to break the news, and even now, many years later, everyone remembers the shock of sweaty Lou pushing through the glass doors, chest heaving, neckline darkened with his own efforts. 

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennet

The first lines from women's fiction cover of the book, The last flight, is a red and black photo looking down an escalator to the silhouette of a woman at the bottom.

Prologue:Terminal 4 swarms with people, the smell of wet wool and jet fuel thick around me. I wait for her, just inside the glass sliding doors, the frigid winter wind slamming into me whenever they open, and instead force myself to visualize a balmy Puerto Rican breeze, laced with the scent of hibiscus and sea salt.  

The Last Flight by Julie Clark

Clarification

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t make a cent off of the books listed on this page. Usually these titles are pulled at random. They are here for your enjoyment. And to entice you to buy more books.

Do You Want to Read More?

Did you enjoy this list? Check out previous First Line Fridays. You’ll put an enormous smile on my face if you tell me in the comments below—

What’s your favorite first line?

A Science Fiction First Lines Friday

First Line Friday is a series of blog articles posted on the first Friday of every month. The first line of a story, we’re told, must hook the reader. Implied is that the reader will not buy the book if the first line isn’t great. These entries are from Amazon, my personal library, or other online books. Today’s post features Science Fiction first lines. (And maybe a fantasy or two.) Are you hooked?


The cover for Joseph Nassise's book Eyes to See have a young man standing in an alley between tow brick buildings. He's got an electric blue haze around him and his entire eyes are that same blue. This SF & F First line is arresting.

I gave up my eyes in order to see more clearly.

 Eyes to See
(Jeremiah Hunt Book 1)
by Joseph Nassise

Cover image of Lightning Game is of a man looking over his shoulder and hovering in the air behind him is a larger than life face of a young blonde woman.

Rubin Campo stood in front of the small cabin made of mostly broken lumber his brothers and father had dragged or cut from the trees in the forest and pieced together. 

Lightning Game (A GhostWalker Novel Book 17) by Christine Feehan

Cover for the Eye of Elektron has a red-headed woman in the center wearing a off the shoulder metalic bodice and chain mail-like skirt, she has something in her hand that is causing swirls of yellow and red

Dawn knew death awaited her at the hour’s end. 

The Eye of Electron (The Sumrectian Series, Book 1)
by Leigh G. Wynn

Jane strained against the harness as the capsule shuddered around her, craning her neck for a better view of the ship they were hurtling toward. 

Fluency (Confluence Book 1) by Jennifer Foehner Wells

There were quite a few interesting things about Johnnie: replacing his left had was a golden claw, he had no scent detectable to any creature on Earth, and he was the most infamous mercenary in two out of three Confederate states.

Beyond the Last War: The Wayward Mercenary by Claude McKenna

No one could have possibly known what was truly in the container.

Europa Contagion
by Nicholas Thorp

Your name is Emma.”

Emma wiped the tears from her eyes.

Blue are the Hills by Lilly Piper

Charlotte knocked over her plastic model solar system toy when she heard her parents fighting again.

Brazen Planet (Tears of Venus) by Gayle Katz

I knew I was different the moment I awoke…or came online, as the Masters call it. 

Omega Force: Revolution (OF9) by Joshua Dalzelle

Clarification

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t make a cent off of the books listed on this page. Usually these titles are pulled at random. They are here for your enjoyment. And to entice you to buy more books.

Do You Want to Read More Science Fiction First Lines?

Did you enjoy this list of science fiction first lines? Check out previous First Line Friday posts. You’ll put an enormous smile on my face if you tell me in the comments below— Which ones spoke to you? Did you buy it?

First Lines for September

First Lines Friday is a series of blog articles posted on the first Friday of every month. The first line of a story, we’re told, must hook the reader. Implied is that the reader will not buy the book if the first line isn’t great. These entries are from Amazon, my personal library, or other online booksellers. Do these first lines for September hook you? Do you want to read more?


Image of the book cover for The Legacy: Elijah. A seven stars above a cityscape silhouette sits inside a circle with wings.

An ear to the door. So simple it was stupid. 

The Legacy: Elijah (The Legacy Series Book 3) by Tricia Wentworth

The night it began, all we could do was listen to the chaos.

Trying to Survive (Part 1) by C.J. Crowley

Charlie sat on a cracked curb in what had been just an hour before, a great city.

Simulant by Bobby Adair  

An hour after the Resurrection Formula team leaders were served breakfast by his Bags, Brandon Kirby marched in the ballroom of his Connecticut country home.

The Opulent Life Option: A Dystopian Novel by Craig Proffitt

The scream builds in my chest, threatens to erupt out of me.

Contain (BUNKER 12) (Volume 1) Saul Tanpepper

Shayna Coldrake eased the truck around to the backside of  a two-story house, watching for any sign of life.

Scorched Earth (Nevermore Book 1) by Stephen Monaco

A gunshot pierced the night.

A hollow ring echoed in its wake.

Age of Order by Julian North

There were quite a few interesting things about Johnnie: replacing his left hand was a golden claw, he had no scent detectable to any creature on Earth, and he was the most infamous mercenary in two out of three Confederate states. 

Beyond the Last War: The Wayward Mercenary by Claude McKenna

And Here’s One More

If you liked those first lines, I hope you’ll love this one:

The giant bronze angel of death loomed over Miranda Clarke’s shoulder.

My Soul to Keep, Book One in the Fellowship Dystopia series by Lynette M. Burrows

Clarification

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t make a cent off of the books listed on this page. Usually these titles are pulled at random. They are here for your enjoyment. And to entice you to buy more books.

Do You Want to Read More?

Did you enjoy this list? Check out previous First Line Fridays. You’ll put an enormous smile on my face if you tell me in the comments below— Which of these first lines for September spoke to reader you? Did you buy the book?

First Lines Friday with Freedom Fighters

First Line Friday is a blog series posted on the first Friday of every month. The first line of a story, we’re told, must hook the reader. Implied is that the reader will not buy the book if the first line isn’t great. These entries are from Amazon, my personal library, or other online booksellers. Today’s choices honor the U.S. holiday, the Fourth of July with a freedom fighters theme. Do these first lines hook you? Do you want to read more?

Girl Reading a Book while sitting on a stack of books, A First lines friday with freedom fighters theme. Lynette M Burrows

I don’t usually do content warnings. The book’s cover, blurb, and category should get the point across. However, a cover and first line alone doesn’t always convey that type of information. 

Content Warning: Violence with graphic descriptions.


Cover of The Patriot's Grill a novel shows a tall smokestack spewing so much smoke it creates a haze of tall city buildings and even a distant mountain range. It's a title in the first lines friday with freedom fighters post for July.

It was a strikingly unlikely sight, even for a world grown accustomed to unlikely sights. 

The Patriot’s Grill by Steven Day

The cover of rogue cell shows a black and white flag with stripes running up and down and the stripes appear to be dripping or torn. A red star in in a field of white in the upper right corner.

They met behind a warehouse, twice abandoned. 

Rogue Cell (A Grower’s War Book 3) by DJ Molles

The cover of Metal warrior shows a very tall bipedal robot walking into a fiery battle scene

Block, damn you! Dane did his best to raise his metal arms to catch the hammer-blow of steel, brass, and aluminum that was coming his way.

Metal Warrior: Born of Steel (Mech Fighter Book 1) by James David Victor

The cover of Ghost fleet is a pixilated image of the ocean with nearly transparent ship of some kind.

“I’m so sorry.”

What did Vitaly mean by that?

Ghost Fleet: A Novel of the Next World War by P. W. Singer and August Cole

Cover of Working Stiffs Shows a man standing in a tall arched doorway looking out a city buildings through a fog

The three dead guys on the freight elevator had a personal odor reminiscent of vomit with an undertone of road kill.

Working Stiffs by Scott Bell

Cover of The Ezekiel Factor shows a skeleton looking out a window at a sunrise over a mountain lake

The severed head plopped into the steel bucket with a gelatinous thump, eyes wide open, as though pleading in vain for a reprieve.

The Ezekiel Factor by Caroline Noe

Clarification

There are no affiliate links in this post. I don’t make a cent off of the books listed on this page. Usually these titles are pulled at random. They are here for your enjoyment. And to entice you to buy more books.

Do You Want to Read More?

Did you enjoy this First Line Friday with Freedom Fighters? Check out previous First Line Friday posts. Please put an enormous smile on my face if you tell me in the comments below— Which ones spoke to you? Did you buy it?