Library life

Whose First Line Is It Anyway?

In January’s edition of The Leaf, we’re challenging you to identify books by their first lines. Those lines are given below, with the answers at the bottom of the page. Good luck!

  1. “Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.”
  2. “‘Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents,’ grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.”
  3. “‘Where’s Papa going with that axe?’ said Fern to her mother as they were setting the table for breakfast.”
  4. “This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it.”
  5. “All children, except one, grow up.”
  6. “Amerigo Bonasera sat in New York Criminal Court Number 3 and waited for justice; vengeance on the men who had so cruelly hurt his daughter, who had tried to dishonor her.”
  7. “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”
  8. “My suffering left me sad and gloomy.”
  9. “Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board.”
  10. “Marley was dead, to begin with.”
  11. “There is no lake at Camp Green Lake.”
  12. “I’ve watched through his eyes, I’ve listened through his ears, and I tell you he’s the one. Or at least as close as we’re going to get.”
  13. “Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death.”
  14. “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”
  15. “You better not never tell nobody but God.”



* = available in our library, at the call number listed

^ = available at the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library

  1. ^The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
  2. *Little Women (Louisa May Alcott) – PZ 7 .A335 LI 1989
  3. *Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White) – PZ 7 .W58277 CH
  4. ^The Princess Bride (William Goldman)
  5. ^Peter Pan (J.M. Barrie)
  6. *The Godfather (Mario Puzo) – PS 3566.U9 G6 2006
  7. *1984 (George Orwell) – PR 6029.R8 N49 1977
  8. ^Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
  9. *Their Eyes Were Watching God (Zora Neale Hurston) – PS 3515 .U789 T5 1998
  10. *A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens) – PR 4572 .A1 1994
  11. *Holes (Louis Sachar) – PZ 7 .S1185 HO 1998
  12. ^Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
  13. ^The Fault in Our Stars (John Green)
  14. *Anna Karenina (Leo Tolstoy) – PG 3366.A6 G35 1939
  15. *The Color Purple (Alice Walker) – PS 3573 .A425 C6 1982
Events, Library life

Looking back on 9/11


For the 15th anniversary of the events of 9/11/2001, we put up an interactive display in the library’s lobby. The prompt was simple: “What do you remember about 9/11/2001?”

From students, faculty, and staff alike, we got a moving array of answers, which are transcribed below.


“I was in College Algebra, and an Administrator came in and announced, ‘All classes are cancelled!’ We were confused and went to the front of the building, to see the news. I just remember everyone saying ‘We are under attack,’ and driving home to be with my family. I don’t think I slept that night.”

“I was in the 1st grade and didn’t really understand what was going on. R.I.P. to the individuals [who lost] their lives during all attacks.”

“I remember nothing but PAIN.”

“I was 4 years old and my mom was crying. I didn’t understand.”

“I remember when I was only 5 years old, my mom received a call from my uncle saying that they were bombing the World Trade Center again. So she turned on the TV and saw both towers smoking. She later found out that two planes crashed into the building.”

“I was 5 years old on 9/11/2001 and I don’t remember what happened.”


“I was teaching my 4th grade class when a co-worker alerted us to the crazy news that a plane had flown into the WTC. We turned on TVs to follow the developing story, hardly believing what was happening. #neverforget”

“I was watching Oprah, and I cried. I was so shocked by the great tragedy. I want to remember the victims.”

“I was very young but I remember my mom and dad frantically calling the people they knew that lived there in New York. We had to do several reports on the event in school and it seemed like the entire nation was depressed and scared.”

“I remember how unreal it seemed.”

“It was a vague memory.”

“I was in 5th grade, living in Oregon. At school, we spent the whole day watching the news and discussing & journalling about it.”

“We lived in CA & got a call from MI — telling us to turn on the TV. We were sleepy but did — just in time to see the 2nd plane hit the towers. Everything was surreal. We could not believe what we were seeing & at the same time was very worried for family in NY. It was a sad day but a miraculous one too.”


“I lived in Tucson. I was watching the news at 6 a.m. (9 a.m. in NYC) & watched the towers come down. I remember the confusion in the voices of the newscasters as we all watched. I called my family in NYC. Then my friend whose husband was a pilot for United — to be sure he was OK. I worked at an eating disorder treatment center & had one patient who came in (about in October). She had worked in the towers & missed the elevator — all her friends died. She lived & was traumatized. I remember American flags everywhere. And our nation felt like it was extra patriotic & close.”

“I saw the Towers in NYC get destroyed by airplanes, back to back. I also saw a plane hit the Pentagon.”

“It was a day of ‘infamy’; evil at its worst and best. A day that I knew America will never be America as it once was. A day of terror beyond imagination. Fear & dread was now the new norm.”

“I was in the 2nd grade, we always started school lined up with prayer. After we left to go to class, while in class I remember the teachers being pulled out of class. When they came back, the TV was turned on and we watched a plane fly into the second tower. I was too young to understand what was happening at the time but I remember the shock on everyone’s face. It was a really sad day, we didn’t do any work that day as we watched the events unfold. Till this day I still think about those families affected & I send a prayer for them as they remember.”


Image credit: Tyskit 0013, tpsdave, WikiImages, tpsdave, and WikimediaImages, on Pixabay.