Willaful from A Willful Woman nominated Miss Bates for this challenge and Miss Bates sends her heartfelt thanks. The idea is to post favourite quotations over three days and nominate three more bloggers to the challenge. Miss Bates is going to take her cue from LizMc2 from Something More and echo that she’s not sure she knows nine bloggers either.
Miss Bates will use the three-day quote challenge to write about, what else, her favourite genre, romance! And one of her literary obsessions, the opening line to a novel, especially a romance novel. Opening lines can make or break a novel for Miss Bates. The author has to grab her from the start. She’s giving a nod to the opening lines of some of her favourite romances. The first is from a much beloved romance author, Mary Balogh and her Notorious Rake:
The thunderstorm was entirely to blame.
That opening line is perfection. It draws the reader’s curiosity. Why was the thunderstorm entirely to blame? And what could we blame the storm for? It echoes another beloved romance, Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, which opens with “There was no possibility of taking a walk that day,” eliciting in the reader the same curiosity, the same serial questioning. What prevented the walk? What was it about that day that made it special or important? The opening sentence can make a romance novel memorable, or it can sound clichéd, or it can be pat, or run-of-the-mill. In Balogh, however, is a gem. And wait until you find out for what we can blame the thunderstorm: it’s sublime. If you haven’t read this novel: run and do it now!