Saturday, 19 April 2014
Be Careful What You Wish For by Jeffrey Archer
Sebastian tightened his grip on the steering wheel of the little MG.
Car opening cliche. Cliche betrays a lack of creativity. On the plus side, this sentence introduces a character and the fact that he (or she depending on how wild your imagination is) is gripping the steering wheel has an element of foreshadowing. But this is what any opening line should have.
Harry Clifton was woken by the sound of the phone ringing.
Bed setting cliche and phone call cliche in one sentence.
First thing said:
"They're trying to kill us."
This is more like it. The dialogue works at revealing a rather important plot point, so top marks for the opening dialogue not being something redundant like,"Hey!"
Verdict: Epic Fail
Sorry, Jeff, but this gets the epic fail award because it hits a three-cliche-opening home run in the prologue and in chapter 1. Cliches are overdone and fail to hook anyone who reads more than 30 books a year. But I suspect the writer knows this and knows that the hook is in the byline.