Thursday, July 31, 2008

Booking Through Thursday--Endings

What are your favorite final sentences from books? Is there a book that you liked specially because of its last sentence? Or a book, perhaps that you didn’t like but still remember simply because of the last line.

In thinking about this question, it's dawned on me that I remember first lines much better than last lines. I'm not sure why. Here are the ones that sluggishly made their way to the top:
  1. 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.
  2. After all, tomorrow is another day. Margaret Mitchell, Gone With the Wind.
  3. So, into all the little settlements of quiet people, tidings of what their boys and girls are doing in the world bring refreshment; bring to the old, memories, and to the young, dreams. Willa Cather, The Song of the Lark.
  4. So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past. F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby.
  5. He was soon borne away by the waves and lost in darkness and distance. Mary Shelley, Frankenstein.
  6. All that is very well, answered Candide, but let us cultivate our garden. Voltaire, Candide.
I remember endings better than last lines. An example of this would be the ending of The Dramatist by Ken Bruen. That has haunted me ever since I read it.


  1. I agree: the ending is much more important than the final sentence.

  2. I've never given thought to remembering the final sentence, but like you, I remember endings.


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