Monday, September 04, 2006

A Literary Quiz (well it's about books anyway)

Several people did a quiz of first lines of random songs taken from their ipods which was good apart from the fact I didn't know any answers cos I'm old and there was a lot of death metal involved.
Anyway, back to the point, I thought I would do a first sentence of books quiz. This may turn out to be virtually impossible as there are a lot of books in the world so I have confined myself to fiction, some classics and some modern but reasonably well known. I need title and author's name, 1 point for each. Winner to get something if I can think of anything.(See my profile for the sort of stuff that may be on my shelves.)

1.On they went, singing 'Eternal Memory', and whenever they stopped, the sound of their feet, the horses and the gusts of wind seemed to carry on their singing.
Dr Zhivago Boris Pasternak Tedward's missing ear
2.Call me Ishmael.
Moby Dick Hermann Melville Billy
3. I am a citizen of the United States of America.
Stupid White Men Michael Moore Vicus Scurra
4. Imagine! November the 15th, 1973.
The Rotter's Club Jonathan Coe Chatterbox
5. London. Michaelmas term lately over, and the Lord Chancellor sitting in Lincoln's Inn Hall.
Bleak House Charles Dickens Tedward's missing ear
6. The summer she was fifteen, Melanie discovered she was made of flesh and blood.
The Magic Toyshop Angela Carter Annie
7. I was twelve tears old the first time I walked on water.
Mr. Vertigo Paul Auster The Whales
8. The education bestowed on Flora Poste by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged;
Cold Comfort Farm Stella Gibbons Annie
9. Early in the morning, late in the century, Cricklewood Broadway.
White Teeth Zadie Smith ziggi
10. When in April the sweet showers fall
And pierce the drought of March to the root
The Canterbury tales Geoffery Chaucer Billy
11. It was a bright, cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.
1984 George Orwell Billy
12. Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendia was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.
100 Years of Solitude Gabriel Garcia Marquez Billy
13. I believe that what separates humanity from everything else in this world - spaghetti, binder paper, deep-sea creatures, edelweiss and Mount McKinley - is that humanity alone has the capacity at any given moment to committ all possible sins.
Hey Nostradamus Douglas Coupland Anonymous
14. That was when I saw the Pendulum.
Foucault's Pendulum Umberto Eco Tedward's missing ear
15. I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy in an emergency room near Petosky, Michigan, in August of 1974.
Middlesex Jeffrey Eugenides herschelian
16. 'Eh bien, mon prince, so Genoa and Lucca are now no more than private estates of the Bonaparte family.'
War and peace Leo Tolstoy Tedward's missing ear
17. The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we came to understand the gravity of our situation.
The Secret History Donna Tartt Annie
18. The schoolmaster was leaving the village, and everybody seemed sorry.
Jude The Obscure Thomas Hardy Tedward's missing ear
19. I was captured by the Fascist Militia on 13 December 1943
If This is A Man Primo Levi Nobody
20. He was tall, about fifty, with darkly handsome, almost sinister features: a neatly trimmed mustache, hair turning silver at the temples, and eyes so black they were like the tinted windows of a sleek limousine - he could see out, but you couldn't see in.
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil John Berendt Anonymous
21. Though brilliantly sunny, Saturday morning was overcoat weather again, not just topcoat weather, as it had been all week and as everyone had hoped it would stay for the big weekend - the weekend of the Yale game.
Franny and Zooey J.D. Salinger Anonymous
22. In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since.
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald Billy
23. When he was nearly thirteen my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.
To Kill A Mocking Bird Harper Lee Tedward's missing ear
24. When a day that you happen to know is Wednesday starts by sounding like Sunday, there is something seriously wrong somewhere.
Day of the Triffids John Wyndham Chatterbox
25. There was no hope for him this time: it was the third stroke.
Dubliners James Joyce The Whales
So there you go, enjoy. I'll start to give clues after a bit if no-one gets any answers.

**Update still some to go you're all doing very well.**


Billy said...

Couldn't resist this...

2. Moby Dick
I had so read 7. Aaagh!
10 sounds like the Canterbury tales.
11. 1984
12. 100 years of solitude
22. the great gatsby

Billy said...

forget the names

2 is by Hermann Melville
7, I can't remember the title, Paul Auster????
10. Geoffrey Chaucher
11. George Orwell
12. Gabriel Garcia Marquez
22. F Scott Fitzgerald.

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

Aagh I know 7 as well. I will think on it a bit longer. 23 is To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee. Knowing Realdoc's affection I think no. 5 is The Diary of Samuel Pepys by the man himself. 14 is I think Foucoult's Pendulum by Umberto Eco. I suspect War and Peace may also be in there and if Realdoc has borrowed from Mr Realdoc's library I suspect there might be a Patrick O'Brien book in there also. I am deeply ashamed that I haven't been able to do better I know no.12 as well.

realdoc said...

Billy 7 is Paul Auster which book?

TME 5 is wrong and it is one you should know.

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

Aha, I was right. no.16 is War and Peace

annie said...


6 sounds like Angela Carter. Is it The Magic Toyshop?

8 - Cold Comfort Farm, by the incomparable Stella Gibbons.

12. - Oh no, it's got to be Marquez. Every single character in every single one of his books is called Colonel Aureliano Buendia.

17. - The Secret History, Donna Tartt, one of my favourites.

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

No. 5 Bleak House Charles Dickens. You're right I should have got it already!

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

Damn! I had just remembered Cold Comfort Farm but I see that Annie had got there before me. And I shoulda got The Secret History damn damn damn

Vicus Scurra said...

3. Michael Moore Stupid White Men. I didn't finish it.
18. Thomas Hardy? Dunno which one. (I know which Thomas Hardy, he lived just down the road, dunno which novel).

herschelian said...

15. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

I got 2,5,8,12,23 as well but so did everyone else. Am still racking my brains about two which seem familiar.

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

1. Dr Zhivago - Boris Pasternak Should have got Middlesex as well.

Tedward's Missing Ear said...

18. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy

Definitely should have got this one earlier as the littlest of the TME family is called after the eponymopus hero ('cept not the obscure bit)

chatterbox said...

Aargh... All the ones I know have been taken already, except...

4 The Rotters Club, Jonathon Coe

I'm sure I know 9 and 24 as well, but stupid brain won't work!

chatterbox said...

24 - John Wyndham - Day of the Triffids

I'vr been revisiting these books recently so I'm ashamed it took me so long!

Anonymous said...

Stab in the dark!

Is 21 The Catcher in the Rye?

Anonymous said...

Wild guess.
No.20 Midnight in the garden of good and evil by John Berendt?

realdoc said...

Just 7,9,13,19,21,and 25 to get.
You're all pretty good at this aren't you.

the whales said...

7, Mr Vertigo, Paul Auster?

the whales said...

...and isn't the last one from Dubliners?

ziggi said...

9 - White Teeth - Zadie Smith?

Anonymous said...

Oops! Wrong JD Salinger last time for No. 21.

Is it Franny and Zooey?

Anonymous said...

13 Hey Nostradamus, by Douglas Coupland.

realdoc said...

All correct except number 19

realdoc said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Spinsterella said...

God, I've read 12 of these, and the only one I would have gotten straight off was the Great Gatsby.

Memory like a sieve.