I do love a good book. I love the type of book that stays with you for days, if not weeks once you’ve read it. I love the kind of book that challenges your perceptions of the world, or a book who’s characters are so well defined, that they seem to walk off of the pages and right into your head, and once the book is finished, it feels lie you’ve lost old friends.
Opening and closing lines in books are the two most important parts in a story. If you can grab your reader from the beginning, or linger with them once the final pages have been read, you create a beautiful bond between your words and their imagination.
Stylist UK posted a list of the 100 best closing lines from different books to their website this week, and it is a brilliant read. Some of the lines I had read, some I knew, because they’re well known, and the others inspired me to start a need-to-read book list of all the titles my imagination still needs to meet.
I thought I would share a few of my favourites from their list…
1. “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”
- The Great Gatsby, F.Scott Fitzgerald
I haven’t read the book, but the movie really moved me, and the closing line feels like it speaks directly to my soul.
2. “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”
- Animal Farm, George Orwell
Animal Farm was my absolute favourite of all the books I read in class in high school. I’ve always loved the Russian Revolution, and I feel the book is a perfect narration of human beings’ terrible inclination to thirst for control over others.
3. “A LAST NOTE FROM YOUR NARRATOR. I am haunted by humans.”
- The Book Thief, Markus Zusak
For anyone who hasn’t, read the Book Thief! It is a magical journey of innocence and destruction, and is narrated by death itself.
4. “The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.”
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J.K.
To be honest, it’s not the most moving closing line I’ve ever read, but after all the time I’ve sent wandering around Hogwarts corridors with Harry, I couldn’t not include it.
5. “But the naming game involves only male names, because if it’s a girl, Laila has already named her.”
- A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini
I read A Thousand Splendid Suns in one night. It was the first time a book had entrapped me in it’s pages since the final Harry Potter. I soon read the Kiterunner by the same author, and was not disappointed. Hosseini bridges the gap between western civilization and Islam so well. His words are moving, and I am currently about to start reading “And the Mountains Echoed” – his latest novel.