Thursday, 31 July 2008

Booking Through Thursday

Following neatly on from last week's first sentences, this week's BTT:

"What are your favourite final sentences from books? Is there a book that you liked specially because of its last sentence? Or a book, perhaps that you didn’t like but still remember simply because of the last line?"

I remember reading once that it's a very Gemini trait to turn to always turn to the last page first, unable to resist temptation, and I admit when I was younger I used to do that quite often. These days, I get to the end of a book with regret and don't often want to speed up the process as I enjoy the anticipation too much.

I read that Ernest Hemingway wrote the ending of For Whom the Bell Tolls thirty nine times because he " couldn't get it right" and to quote Mickey Spillane, "Your opening paragraph sells the book. The final paragraph sells your next book."

I am sure that all authors put as much effort into the last lines of their books but it's honestly not something that I've watched out for in the same way as I would first lines. That in mind, I had a quick chat with google and discovered that both these are last lines:

"It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known." Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities.

"After all, Tomorrow is another day." Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind.

Both of those lines are such incredibly famous quotes from the books but, in spite of having read them both, I had no idea that they were the actual last lines. Clearly, I need to pay more attention in the future if I am going to do a BTT post like this any justice!

13 comments:

mari said...

I also posted the last line of A Tale of Two Cities. Such a good first and last line. It was pretty good in between, too. :)

Melody said...

Those are great lines! I wish I can remember some of them! (I tend to remember more of how it ends though).

Smilingsal said...

I love the Mickey Spillane quote!

gautami tripathy said...

Spillane has a point there!

:D

Here is my BTT post

thekoolaidmom said...

The Spillane quote is really great, and I've never thought of it that way before. It's true I suppose, considering I've never read another Dean Koontz book after being so disgusted with his mediocre ending of The Darkest Evening of the Year... sucked so bad, I've never wanted to pick up another one of his books since.

readerville said...

That Spillane quote definitely rings true. I also wrote about the ending of A Tale of Two Cities , but it's almost a shame just to single out the first and last lines when the whole thing is such a masterpiece...think I may need to re-read this one soon.

Chris said...

I used to do that too but I never learned anything from the last line. I just had to keep reading.

Confuzzled Books said...

I agree with everyone on the Spillane quote.

Nithin said...

That quote from Mickey Spillane is great. I also liked the two last lines you mentioned.

Charli and me said...

Great last lines!

Peta said...

Thanks to everyone for popping by - great to "meet" so many new people by returning the visits! :)

oxford-reader said...

I think Jane Austen turns out a good last sentence - in 'P&P' and 'Emma' most of all. But I don't have the books to hand, so I shall have to make do with the last line of Black Narcissus ... 'Sister Clodah put the cup back on the saucer' .... which is a stupid way to end any book, let alone one about nuns who run practically mad at the top of an Indian mountain.

Bibliophile said...

From one of my fave books..

"Are there any questions?" —Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale