Monday, 31 October 2011

Quick Dectet: Last Lines

Because it is the last day of October and hence the last of my quick quintets, I thought I would choose closing lines from novels for my subject. Opening lines get all the credit, when the credit should really come at the finish. Some of my favourite books don't have great last lines (and the last line of Jane Eyre is not 'And reader, I married him' - that's the first line of the last chapter for all you pedants out there - you know who you are!)

And because there are quite a few to choose from, and it is my blog and I can do whatever I want, I have decided to go for ten things rather than five (in chronolgical order):

Top Ten Last Lines in Literature: 
  1. 'Come, children, let us shut up the box and the puppets, for our play is played out.' – William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair (1847–48)
  2. ‘It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.’ – Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities (1859)
  3. 'So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.' – F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (1925)
  4. 'But wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.' – A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner (1928)
  5. 'The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which. – George Orwell, Animal Farm (1945)
  6. 'He loved Big Brother' – George Orwell, 1984 (1948)
  7. 'Oh God. You’ve done enough. You’ve robbed me of enough. I’m too tired and old to learn to love, leave me alone for ever.' – Graham Greene, The End of the the Affair  (1951)
  8. 'Are there any questions?' – Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale (1986)
  9. 'I thought they were supposed to be dead, but in real life they’re just going to go on singing.' – Salman Rushdie, The Ground Beneath Her Feet (1999)
  10. 'Very few castaways can claim to have survived so long at sea as Mr. Patel, and none in the company of an adult Bengal tiger.' – Yann Martel, Life of Pi (2002)

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