Angelmaker

angelmaker

Nick Harkaway

First Sentence:     At seven fifteen a.m., his bedroom slightly colder than the vacuum of space, Joshua Joseph Spork wears a longish leather coat and a pair of his father’s golfing socks.

Back of the book:

Joe Spork, son of the infamous criminal Mathew ‘Tommy Gun’ Spork just wants a quiet life, repairing clockwork in a wet, unknown bit of London.

Edie Banister, former superspy, lives quietly and wishes she didn’t. She’s nearly ninety and the things she fought to save don’t seem to exist anymore. She’s beginning to wonder if they ever did.

When Joe is asked to fix one particularly unusual device, his life is suddenly upended. The client? Unknown. The device? A 1950s doomsday machine. Having triggered it, Joe now faces the wrath of both the government and a diabolical South Asian dictator, Edie’s old arch-nemesis. Joe’s once-quiet world is now populated with mad monks, psychopathic serial killers, scientific geniuses and threats to the future of conscious life in the universe. The only way he can survive, is to muster the courage to fight, help Edie complete a mission she gave up years ago, and pick up his father’s old gun…

Quotes from the book:

‘[…] she is almost vibrating with rich, distilled energy, as if the process of living all those decades has made a reduction of her spirit which is thick and slow in her chest, but sweeter and stronger for it.’

Those times faded away in almost perfect synchrony with the change in relative scale of their palms. As Joe’s first equalled and then exceeded his mother’s, so both of them became unwilling to share the inverted contact which told them the years had moved on.[…] They spoke occasionally, met rarely, and touched little if at all.

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The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair

HarryJoël Dicker

First Sentence:     My book was the talk of the town.

Back of the book:

August 30, 1975. The day of the disappearance. The day a small New Hampshire town lost its innocence.

That summer Harry Quebert fell in love with fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan. Thirty-three years later, her body is dug up from his yard along with a manuscript copy of his career-defining novel. Quebert is the only suspect.

Marcus Goldman – Quebert’s most gifted protégé – throws off his writer’s block to clear his mentor’s name. Solving the case and penning a new bestseller soon blur together. As his book begins to take on a life of its own, the nation is gripped by the mystery of ‘The Girl Who Touched the Heart of America’. But with Nola, in death as in life, nothing is ever as it seems.

Quote from the book:

“A new book, Marcus, is the start of a new life. It’s also an act of great generosity; You are offering, to whoever wishes to discover it, a part of yourself. Some will love it, some will hate it. Some will worship you, others will despise you. Some will be jealous, others interested. But you’re not writing it for them. You’re writing it for all those who, in their daily lives, will enjoy a sweet moment because of Marcus Goldman. You may say that doesn’t sound like much, but it’s actually quite something. Some writers want to change the world. But who can really change the world?”

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The Fault In our Stars

Fault In Our Stars

John Green

First Sentence:     Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I never left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death.

Back of the book:

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

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A Meal In Winter

A Meal In Winter

Hubert Mingarelli

First Sentence:     They had rung the iron gong outside and it was still echoing, at first for real in the courtyard, and then, for a longer time, inside our heads.

Back of the book:

One morning, in the dead of winter, three German soldiers are dispatched into the frozen Polish countryside. They have been charged by their commanders to track down and bring back for execution ‘one of them’ – a Jew. Having flushed out the young man hiding in the woods, they decide to rest in an abandoned house before continuing their journey back to the camp. As they prepare food, they are joined by a passing Pole whose outspoken anti-Semitism adds tension to an already charged atmosphere. Before long, the group’s sympathies have splintered as they consider the moral implications of their murderous mission and confront their own consciences to ask themselves: should the Jew be offered food? And, having shared their meal, should he be taken back, or set free?

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This Is Life

This Is Life

Dan Rhodes

First Sentence:     Aurélie Renard was standing on the west side of the small square.

Back of the book:

In Paris, art student Aurélie Renard throws a stone and sets in motion a chain of events that will turn her life upside down.

Suddenly finding herself in sole charge of a stranger’s baby, and with no idea how babies work, it’s only thanks to the help of her adoring professor and her gun-toting heartbreaker of a best friend that Aurélie Renard is able to navigate her way through the most extraordinary and calamitous seven days of her life.

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