In a somewhat late and chaotic fashion, here is another First Lines Friday post! This book is my next buddy read. I’ve been busy preparing my house for a lowkey event, so scheduling blog posts was not a priority. This is also the reason my blog hopping continues to be lower than usual. But after today I’ll hopefully be back at it!
First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines? The rules are as follows:
- Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
- Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
- Finally… reveal the book!
If you’re using Twitter, don’t forget to use #FirstLinesFridays!
The child’s world changed late one afternoon, though she didn’t know it. She lay at the edge of the hazel coppice, one cheek pressed to the moss that smelt of worm cast and the last of the sun, listening: to the wind in the elms, rushing away from the day, to the jackdaws changing their calls from “Outward! Outward!” to “Home, now! Home!,” to the rustle of the last frightened shrews scuttling under the layers of leaf fall before the owls began their hunt.
Do you know what book this is?
Well, the book reveal is…
Hild by Nicola Griffith
The award-winning author Nicola Griffith’s brilliant, lush, sweeping historical novel about the rise of the most powerful woman of the Middle Ages: Hild.
In seventh-century Britain, small kingdoms are merging, frequently and violently. A new religion is coming ashore; the old gods are struggling, their priests worrying. Hild is the king’s youngest niece, and she has a glimmering mind and a natural, noble authority. She will become a fascinating woman and one of the pivotal figures of the Middle Ages: Saint Hilda of Whitby.
But now she has only the powerful curiosity of a bright child, a will of adamant, and a way of seeing the world–of studying nature, of matching cause with effect, of observing her surroundings closely and predicting what will happen next–that can seem uncanny, even supernatural, to those around her.
Her uncle, Edwin of Northumbria, plots to become overking of the Angles, ruthlessly using every tool at his disposal: blood, bribery, belief. Hild establishes a place for herself at his side as the king’s seer. And she is indispensable–unless she should ever lead the king astray. The stakes are life and death: for Hild, for her family, for her loved ones, and for the increasing numbers who seek the protection of the strange girl who can read the world and see the future.
Hild is a young woman at the heart of the violence, subtlety, and mysticism of the early Middle Ages–all of it brilliantly and accurately evoked by Nicola Griffith’s luminous prose. Working from what little historical record is extant, Griffith has brought a beautiful, brutal world to vivid, absorbing life.