Book Beginnings on Friday

Book Beginnings on Friday is a meme hosted by Becky at Page Turners. Anyone can participate; just share the opening sentence of your current read, making sure that you include the title and author so others know what you're reading. If you like, share with everyone why you do, or do not, like the sentence. (Thanks to Rose City Reader for inspiring this meme)

The Unusual Life of Tristan Smith by Peter Carey

I thought that it was about high time that I read something by one of Australia's most famous and talented authors. He has been in hot water recently regarding his closing speech at the Sydney Writers Festival; people thought that he was being very elitist. I haven't listened to the speech so I can't really comment, but I can say that is an extremely strange but enjoyable book. Here are the two opening lines:
"My name is Tristan Smith. I was born in Chemin Rouge in Efica - which is to say as much to you, I bet, as if I declared I was from the moon."
I actually really love this opening. It is so catchy, it sets the tone of the book and the setting. I think that already we can tell that the character is a little self-centred; he starts his story with a short statement about who he is, and intimates that we don't quite have the intelligence that he does. You can sense the mockery in his tone when he says that second sentence. I can just picture him giving a little laugh and shaking his head at us for not knowing where he is from. Carey is undoubtedly an extremely talented writer.

What about you? leave a link to your Book Beginnings on Friday post in the Mr Linky below.

10 comments

  1. Great opening! Sounds like an interesting book!

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  2. Hmmm, I didn't really think of that. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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  3. I wonder if the place has an impact on the rest of the story, since it was brought up in the first sentence; or with the mockery he is saying that place is irrelevant. Interesting opening -- I'd love to hear about the rest of this book.

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  4. The place is very important to the book, but that sense of mockery comes from the characters own sense of importance more than anything.

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  5. quite an interesting beginning! and it sounds like you had a good week for reviews!

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  6. This is my first time participating in Book Beginnings on Friday, after contemplating posting something for the last few weeks.

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  7. That opener really makes me want to know more. I hope you're enjoying it.

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  8. Fun!

    Here's mine:

    http://situationswhereyoumayneedit.blogspot.com/2010/07/book-beginnings-friday-victim.html

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  9. That's a great opening. I confess I gave up on Carey after The True History of the Kelly Gang, which was very popular, won the Booker, blah blah blah, but bored the socks off me.

    Oscar & Lucinda is on my TBR shelf, though, so I will give him another try one of these days.

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