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BOOKS (FIRST LINES)
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[ Also see Books Books (Last Lines) Books (Quotes) Quotations ]

We are at rest five miles behind the front. Yesterday we were relieved, and now our bellies are full of beef and haricot beans. We are satisfied and at peace.
      - Erich Maria Remarque,
        All Quiet on the Western Front [1929] (ch. 1)

What is still left of Number 2 Platoon is quartered in a stretch of battered trench behind the line, and most of them are dozing.
      - Erich Maria Remarque, The Road Back [1930]
         (prologue), (A.W. Wheen translation)

Roads stretch far through the landscape, the villages lie in a grey light; trees rustle, leaves are falling, falling.
      - Erich Maria Remarque, The Road Back [1930]
         (pt. 1), (A.W. Wheen translation)

Everything about Lovey Mary was a contradiction, from her hands and feet, which seemed to have been meant for a big girl, to her high ideals and aspirations, that ought to have belonged to an amiable one. The only ingredient which might have reconciled all the conflicting elements in her chaotic little bosom was one which no one had ever taken the trouble to supply.
      - Alice Caldwell Rice (Alice Caldwell Hegan, Mrs. Cale Young Rice),
        Lovey Mary (ch. I)

An English mist was rolling lazily inland from the sea. It half enveloped the two great ocean liners that lay tugging at their moorings in the bay, and settled over the wharf with a grim determination to check, as far as possible, the traffic of the morning.
      - Alice Caldwell Rice (Alice Caldwell Hegan, Mrs. Cale Young Rice),
        Sandy [1904] (ch. 1)

The city turned its dreariest aspect toward the railway station; blackened walls, irregular and ill-paved streets, gloomy warehouses, and over all a gray, smoke-laden atmosphere which gave it mystery and often beauty.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, A Poor Wise Man [1920]

Natalie Spenser was giving a dinner. She was not an easy hostess.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, Dangerous Days [1919]

The Street stretched away north and south in two lines of ancient houses that seemed to meet in the distance.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, K [1915]

When old Lucius Dowling lay dying he sent for his will and reread it.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, Lost Ecstasy [1927]

The stage on which we play our little dramas of life and love has for most of us but one setting.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart,
        The Amazing Interlude [1918]

"Heaven and earth," sang the tenor, Mr. Henry Wallace, owner of the Wallace garage. His larynx, which gave him somewhat the effect of having swallowed a crab-apple and got it only part way down, protruded above his low collar.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, The Breaking Point [1922]
         (ch. I)

Young Doctor Arden was gong through the process of reorienting himself after a night's sleep.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, The Doctor [1936]

I have wrenched knee, and for the past two weeks my days have consisted of three trays, two of them here in the library, a nurse at ten o'clock each morning with a device of infernal origin which is supposed to bake the pain out of my leg, and my thoughts for company.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, The Door [1930]

McKnight is gradually taking over the criminal end of the business.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart,
        The Man in Lower Ten [1909]

In my criminal work anything that wears skirts is a lady, until the law proves her otherwise. From the frayed and slovenly petticoats of the woman who owns a poultry stand in the market and who has grown wealthy by selling chickens at twelve ounces to the pound, or the silk sweep of Mamie Tracy, whose diamonds have been stolen down on the avenue, or the staidly respectable black and middle-aged skirt of the client whose husband has found an affinity partial to laces and fripperies, and has run off with her–all the wearers are ladies, and as such announced by Hawes. In fact, he carries it to excess.
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart,
        The Window at the White Cat [1910] (ch. 1)

When the dreadful thing occurred that night, every one turned on me. The injustice of it hurt me most. They said I got up the dinner, that I asked them to give up other engagements and come, that I promised all kinds of jollification, if they would come; and then when they did come and got in the papers and every one--but ourselves--laughed himself black in the face, they turned on ME! I, who suffered ten times to their one!
      - Mary Roberts Rinehart, When a Man Marries [1909]
         (ch. I)

"It's a girl," said Roden, laying a wager with himself. "No; it's a boy. Hanged if it isn't a girl!" He took his short brier-wood pipe from his mouth, knocked out its contents against the side of the wagon, and pocketed it.
      - Amelie Rives (later Princess Amelie Chanler Troubetzkoy),
        Virginia of Virginia [1888] (ch. 1)

"To my son Hugh, in return for the care and sorrow he has caused me all the days of his life, for his dissolute career and his desertion, I do give and bequeath the sum of one thousand dollars and the memory of his misspent youth."
      - Hallie Erminie Rives (Mrs. Post Wheeler),
        Satan Sanderson [1907] (ch. 1)

Barbara leaned against the palpitant rail, the light air fanning her breeze-cool cheek, her arteries beating like tiny drums, atune with the throb, throb, throb, of the steel deck as the black ocean leviathan swept on toward its harbor resting-place.
      - Hallie Erminie Rives (Mrs. Post Wheeler),
        The Kingdom of Slender Swords [1910] (ch. 1)

"Failed!" ejaculated John Valiant blankly, and the hat he held dropped to the claret-colored rug like a huge white splotch of sudden fright. "The Corporation--failed!"
      - Hallie Erminie Rives (Mrs. Post Wheeler),
        The Valiants of Virginia [1912] (ch. 1)

This book has not been written to prove a case.
      - Kenneth Lewis Roberts, Northwest Passage [1937]

My father, Seaton Wiswell of Milton and Boston, was an attorney.
      - Kenneth Lewis Roberts, Oliver Wiswell [1940]

The moment the sun lifted his red face above the horizon, Peder was up; and in summer, just after the face had dropped out of sight, Peder was in bed again. . . . Strange old sun . . . He often wondered what could make that face so red morning and evening. Perhaps weariness with shining so hard all the time. Since he himself often felt drowsy and full when evening came, Peder could very well understand this. . . .
      - Ole Edvart Rolvaag, Peder Victorious [1929]
         (pt. 1, ch. 1),
        (Solum and Rolvaag translation)

Mr. Cugat was a little older than Mrs. Cugat, so that there had been a period of several years during which he, full-fledged and out in the world, sportively tried his wings while she still pounded the playing fields of Westover. These years were looked back on by Mr. Cugat, when he looked back, with nostalgic pleasure and some pride; they were recalled by Mrs. Cugat in glum conjecture.
      - Isabel Scott Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. Cugat [1940]
         (ch. 1)

965 Sei Shonagon born.
      - Amy Krause Rosenthal,
        Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life


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