First Paragraph: A Good American

Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea asks us to share the first paragraph of a book we are reading. As you can see it’s called First Chapter, First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. As readers we are often captivated or turned away by that first paragraph or two. Let’s see what you think about the first paragraph of my current read.

I just finished listening to one of the best books of this young year. I told you about it yesterday (here) but now I have to share the first paragraph. It’s A Good American by Alex George. Here’s the first paragraph:

Always, there was music.

     It was music-Puccini, to be precise-that first drew my grandparents into each other’s orbit, more than a hundred years ago. It was an unusually warm afternoon in early spring, in the grandest municipal garden in Hanover, the Gross Garten. My grandmother, Henrietta Furst, was taking her usual Sunday stroll among the regimented flower beds and manicured lawns so beloved of city dwelling Prussians. At twenty-five, she was a fine example of Teutonic rude health: Jette, as she was known by everyone, was six feet tall, and robustly built. She walked through the park with none of the feminine grace that was expected from ladies of her class. Rather than making her way by trippingly petite steps on the arm of an admirer, Jette clomped briskly along the graveled paths alone, too busy enjoying the day to worry about the unladylike spectacle she presented to others. Rather than squeezing her considerable frame into the bustles and corsets that constrained the grim-faced ladies she so effortlessly outflanked, Jette preferred voluminous dresses that draped her outsized form like colorful tents. She swept along in a dramatic, free-flowing swirl, leaving all those rigidly contorted women hobblimg in her wake.

     And then, as she passed a sculpted wall of privet, a song drifted out from behind the topiary. The singer was male; his voice, as clear and as pure as a freshly struck bell, fell on Jette like a shower of jasmine . . .

What do you think? Would you keep on reading?

About Margot

I'm also known as Joyfully Retired. I love to talk. I love to talk about books I've read, movies I've seen, places I've traveled to, people (especially my children and grandchildren), and Food. On the Quirky Girls Read blog I'm trying to read all the books that have won the major awards and then, of course, talk about them.
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5 Responses to First Paragraph: A Good American

  1. I would keep reading. I’ve read good reviews and think I will look for the audio.

  2. Oh, I think I would absolutely love the character Jette. She sounds like someone to be reckoned with….thanks for sharing. And thanks for visiting my blog.

  3. JoAnn says:

    This sounds like a great book… I’d definitely keep reading!

  4. kaye says:

    sounds really good–you have a sixth sense when it comes to finding good books.

  5. I love the writing style and would keep reading. Great pick.

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