Top Ten Favorite Beginnings/Endings In Books

Top Ten Tuesday is an original meme created by the wonderful blog, The Broke and the Bookish, as they are particularly fond of lists over there. All they ask is participants link back to the site to share their lists with fellow bloggers. Check out The Broke and the Bookish for details on this great weekly feature!

This week’s topic is Top Ten Favorite Beginnings/Endings In Books (talk about books that started or ended just perfectly or with a bang OR you could do specific opening lines or last lines — however you want to do it!)



1. The Color Purple – Alice Walker

I love the opening letter. It’s so sad and beautiful. This is how to start a book with a bang.

2. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – Jonathan Safran Foer

The beginning of this book just goes quirkquirkquirk and is so cool that you just have to keep reading. It’s weird and wacky and funny and is definitely one of the most unique beginnings to a book I’ve ever read.

3. Diary – Chuck Palahniuk

Awesome beginning page. “The man calling from Long Beach, he says his bathroom is missing.” Best line.

4. House of Leaves – Mark Z. Danielewski

When Johnny starts talking about nightmares in the intro, I just go swoonswoonswoon. This book knows it’s good, but that doesn’t make me like it less.

“I still get nightmares. In fact I get them so often I should be used to them by now. I’m not. No one ever really gets used to nightmares.”

Honorable Mentions: Living Dead Girl by Elizabeth Scott, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, The Book Thief by Marcus Zusack



5. Dead Girls Don’t Write Letters – Gail Giles

This was a read-aloud book in middle school that I just loved. I think it was my first book that had a MAJOR plot twist at the end.

6. Now You See Her – Jacquelyn Mitchard

Another twist. I hated this book because the protagonist was horrible, but DAMN, I did not see that one coming.

7. This is All – Aidan Chambers

You find out that the narrator dies and had a baby, and it ends with “And then we spoke your name.” I used to be really annoyed by this ending, because I wanted to know the name of Will and Cordelia’s baby! I do have a theory about it now though, which makes me feel a little better.

8. Goth Girl Rising – Barry Lyga

This is one of my favorite endings in a book ever because it’s not happy. Lyga doesn’t just wrap up this intense, sad, angry story in a perfect little package, he leaves it open-ended.

9. Splendor – Anna Godberson

*Spoiler alert.* I really, REALLY wanted Diana and Henry to end up together, and was kind of heartbroken they didn’t. At the same time though, I thought Diana’s choice not to be with him made the series end more powerfully.

10. Catching Fire – Suzanne Collins

“Katniss, there is no more District 12.” ‘Nuff said.

Honorable Mentions: Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma, Delirium and Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver, The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly


3 thoughts on “Top Ten Favorite Beginnings/Endings In Books

  1. I forgot about Extremely Loud. That is a great beginning–it just throws you into a world and a mind. Sink or swim.
    House of Leaves is a pretty quirky girl of a book, isn’t it? It knows its different, and proud of it. Nice list!

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