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Friday, June 05, 2009

Opening Lines – Test Your Knowledge

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness . . . .” Dickens’ start to A Tale of Two Cities is one of literature’s most recognizable opening lines.

You can test your knowledge of the openings of other classic novels courtesy of MSN Encarta:

1. “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”

a. 1984, George Orwell
b. Miss Lonelyhearts, Nathanael West
c. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
d. The Stranger, Albert Camus

2. “124 was spiteful.”

a. My Antonia, Willa Cather
b. The Color Purple, Alice Walker
c. Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
d. Beloved, Toni Morrison

3. “Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say
that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.”

a. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis
b. A Room With a View, E.M. Forster
c. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling
d. Possession, A.S. Byatt

For the answers and the remainder of the 10-question quiz, see MSN Encarta's Novel Quiz: Famous Opening Lines.

Don’t Miss . . .

First Anniversary Celebration at Burke Centre Library. Saturday, June 13, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. A brief ceremony followed by birthday cake at 10:30 a.m. Other events include the following:
• 11 a.m. visit and book signing by children’s author Laura Elliott;
• 2:30 p.m. discussion by suspense author John Gilstrap of his forthcoming novel “No Mercy”;
• All-day silent auction of special donated books and a mini book sale.

The celebration is being hosted by the Friends of the Burke Centre Library. For more information, call 703-249-1520.

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