First Line Fridays lets new (or new to you authors) give everyone a preview of the first lines of their book.

Today's guest is Marie Langager, author of Beyond our Stars.

Fleeing a destroyed Earth, seventeen-year-old orphan Hope grew up living in the confines of a spaceship heading to CR-3, a new home planet. She's been kicking the steel walls for too long and ever since she broke her boyfriend's heart, touchdown could mean open air and a fresh start. But no one expected the Locals. Hope’s dreams of freedom turn into nightmares when the Locals trap the humans and mark groups for observation. At any moment she can be called into a holographic observation room for testing. Some days she’s drowning in a strange dark ocean, some days she’s locked up without food, and all with the one boy she can't seem to forget. As the Locals study Hope, she studies them. She wants to believe the tall grey creatures could be peaceful, but as the simulations become more dangerous, Hope is about to become the human race’s last chance for survival.

Fleeing a destroyed Earth, seventeen-year-old orphan Hope grew up living in the confines of a spaceship heading to CR-3, a new home planet. She's been kicking the steel walls for too long and ever since she broke her boyfriend's heart, touchdown could mean open air and a fresh start. But no one expected the Locals.

Hope’s dreams of freedom turn into nightmares when the Locals trap the humans and mark groups for observation. At any moment she can be called into a holographic observation room for testing. Some days she’s drowning in a strange dark ocean, some days she’s locked up without food, and all with the one boy she can't seem to forget.

As the Locals study Hope, she studies them. She wants to believe the tall grey creatures could be peaceful, but as the simulations become more dangerous, Hope is about to become the human race’s last chance for survival.

What are the opening lines of your book?

 I knew that we were all feeling the same thing, a communal cold sweat.

“You know what I’d really like right now?” Weeks asked me with a lazy drawl. He sidled up next to me, his bulky arm brushing against mine.

Not to be headed into a session there’s no escape from, where your worst nightmares come to life?

Were these lines set from the first draft? And if not, how many times do you think you've changed them?

Oh no. I deleted several paragraphs that were in the original opening, and tried out a few first lines. But the “communal cold sweat” was the line a few people mentioned they liked, and it felt right, so it stayed (with a few tweaks from my editor).

Why do you think this opening is perfect for your novel?

Because the “specimens” (the teenagers marked for observation by the alien "Locals") do have this feeling of trepidation in common, and it continues throughout the book, even if they disagree about the motives of the aliens.

Also because these lines lead into some of the humor in this story, which alleviates the darker times.

Give us your favorite opening line(s) from a favorite book, and tell us why you love them:

“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.”

Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier

I read Rebecca at a very young age and it captivated me. This book is classic, timeless. That first line has so much wrapped up in it, instantly immersing the reader in the chilling atmosphere of an unforgettable story.

 

Thanks so much for joining us today, Marie!

Be sure to check out Marie's Website and ORDER Beyond Our Stars!