100 best first lines from novels Following is a list of the 100 best first lines from novels, as decided by the American Book Review, a nonprofit journal published at the Unit for Contemporary Literature at Illinois State University: 1. Call me Ishmael. - Herman Melville, Moby-Dick (1851) 2. It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife. - Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice (1813) 100 best first lines from novels
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