Thursday, March 11, 2010

Share a Story - Shape a Future’s 2010 Blog Tour

This post is part of Share a Story - Shape a Future’s 2010 Blog tour entitled It Takes A Village To Raise A Reader
Share a Story - Shape a Future
The purpose of the tour is to share ideas on how to encourage a love of reading.
I believe reading the first line or paragraph from a book is a great prompt to start off a reader. For this post, I am including links to the books from Amazon.
Here are the answers from my last post. These books are all great boy books. They run the gamut from Picture book to YA

Being dead was colder than Mark expected.
(Given that first line, I am off to the library to check it out.)

Look, I didn’t want to be a half blood. If you’re reading this cause you might be one, my advice is: close the book right now. “
The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

Monday 9:28 AM “What the hell, Dixie?” A piece of paper slammed against Dixie’s computer screen eclipsing the game of Ski Free he’s been playing for the past hour.
(This is a funny book!)

“I am such a coward,” Ben said to himself. “When someone pushes ahead of me in line at the bakery, I don’t say anything. When I wear my favorite pair of flowered overalls, I’m scared of being laughed at. And when I hear strange noised at night, I’m afraid it’s a spook under my bed. I need help.”
Brave Ben by Mathilde Stein. Illustrated by Mies Van Haut
(I read this one at the library. I loved it.)

Here is a story that’s stranger than strange. Before we begin you might want to arrange: a blanket a cushion a comfortable seat and maybe some cocoa and something to eat.
Zorgamazoo Robert Paul Weston

Once upon a time in the Wild Wild West, there lived a rancher and his wife. Every morning just as the sun was coming up, the rancher saddled his horse and fed the cattle, while his wife baked biscuits. Biscuits with butter, biscuits with honey, biscuits with jelly…Yes those breakfast biscuits were as plump as pillows, soft as clouds and tasty as a big Texas barbeque.
The Gingerbread Cowboy by Janet Saures Illustrated by Holly Berry
(This is not only a debut picture book by Janet, it is the retelling off an old story. And it is beautifully done).

One hot summer morning Peter Pig woke up and thought of a new song.
Peter’s Song by Carol P Saul. Illustrated by Diane de Groot

The story I am about to share with you takes place in 1931 under the roofs of Paris. Here you will meet a boy named Hugo Cabret, who once long ago, discovered a mysterious drawing that changed his life forever.“
The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick

I went to sleep with gum in my mouth and now there’s gum in my hair and when I got out of bed this morning I tripped on my skateboard and by mistake I dropped my sweater in the sink when the water was running and I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.
Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst Illustrated by Ray Cruz.

Look around you. What do you see? If you’re inside, you might see walls carpeting, furniture. If you’re outside, you might see grass, buildings, sky. But the world is a lot more complicated than it seems.

Here are 5 first lines from books more of interest to girls

"I have been accused of being anal retentive, an over-achiever, and a compulsive perfectionist, like those are bad things."

“I have had not so good of a week”
Clementine by Sara Pennypacker. Illustrated by Marla Frazee. 2007 Boston Globe/Horn Book Award.
(This is a mid grade illustrated novel. I loved it. Wonderfully funny. This one is fun for kids and parents.)

Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

That fool of a fairy Lucinda did not intend to lay a curse on me.
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

Alanna, the First Adventure by Tamora Pierce.
(This book doesn’t have a great first line. If you click on the link, you can read the first page. There are four books in this series which is about a girl training as a knight. I read this series once a year.)

These last 5 Lines are from picture books.

Rock, Shore, Pebble, sand. Body, Shoulder, arm, hand. A moat to dig. A shell to keep. All the world is wide and deep.
All the World by Liz Garton Scanlon, illustrated by Marla Frazee.

Everybody knows the story of the Three Little Pigs. Or at least they think they do.
The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs - Jon Scieszka - Illus. by Lane Smith
(I love everything Jon writes even if I cannot pronounce his last name…)

The morning the rainbow came, Genevieve's sheep were still white. Or rather grey and dirty brown and sheep tend to be.
Rainbow Sheep written and illustrated by Kim McDougal

Out in the hottest, dustiest part of town is an orphanage run by a female person nasty enough to scare night into day.
Saving Sweetness by Diane Stanley Illustrated by G. Brian Karas
(This one I sat down and reading the library. I loved it)

Bliss to you. Bliss to you! Is me who is dog, Trixie Koontz, happy dog.
I, Trixie Who is Dog -Dean Koontz Illustrated by Janet Cleland
(I had to use this. Dean Koontz normally writes some of the best first paragraphs around. Treat yourself to an hour in a bookstore or library reading them. This is the only children’s book I ever saw by him)
Some of these are from my earlier posts. If you browse some of my earlier posts, you will find more great first lines. There are so many wonderful first lines to be discovered. Treat yourself and your child to a first line hunt at the library or at the bookstore. Happy reading.


  1. There are some great first lines there, and some of my favourite books too. Kids are like most readers I think, they'll check the cover, read the blurb and skim the first paragraph of a book. So a first line that plunges us into the story, intrigues us or grabs our attention is really important. And a first line hunt is a neat idea for a library visit!

  2. Thanks for including Zorgamazoo! Much appreciated. Looking forward to dipping into some of these others. RPW

  3. What great first lines!! It makes me want to check out a couple of them. I have to admit though . . . most of the books you mentioned that were targeted for boys were more intriguing to me!! :)

  4. Hey I love all the boy books. I had two boys and me and my brother had a deal: I read all his books and he read all mine. One of my favorite childhood series was the Tom Swift Jr. series. And I loved Horatio Alger. If you can get it at your library, try his book Ragged Dick

  5. The reason this post looks so good is because of Lupe Fernandez. I sent him the links and the titles and the images and he did the work. Thank you Lupe!

  6. Oh, it's nothing really.

    All in a day's work for Senor Blogo.

    UP, UP AND AWAY! (Cue swooshing sfx)

  7. Great post and enticing first lines! I know I'm tempted to go grab some of the ones I haven't read. Yeah reading!!


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