10 First Lines from Middle Grade Fiction

The first line of a book is a wonderful thing. Just a few perfect words, and a portal is opened. You’re seeing the world through new eyes. Exploring a world that is built from hard work and imagination. Thinking of things that wouldn’t have come to mind without a little help.

10 Favorite First Lines in Middle Grade

Today, I’m sharing some of my favorite first lines from Middle Grade books! Do they inspire you, too?


"Feathers fell from the sky. Like black snow, they drifted onto an old city called Bath. They whirled down the roofs, gathered in the corners of the alleys, and turned everything dark and silent, like a winter’s day." –The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann

"It is a known fact that most extraordinary moments in a person’s life come disguised as ordinary days. It is a known fact for me, at least." –The Key to Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd

"In the land of Ingary, where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, it is quite a misfortune to be born the eldest of three.” –Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

"Rain fell that night, a fine, whispering rain. Many years later, Meggie had only to close her eyes and she could still hear it, like tiny fingers tapping on the windowpane." –Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

"My mother named me after a cow’s rear end." –Rump by Liesl Shurtliff

"Once upon a time, blacksmiths were as important as magicians. They made tools for healers to cure the sick. Shoes to shod the hooves of working animals. Swords for adventurers to slay monsters. The world was forged in iron… Once upon a time…" --The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill

"That fool of a fairy Lucinda did not intend to lay a curse on me." –Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

"I expect I might as well begin by telling you all about Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle so that whenever I mention her name, which I do very often in this book, you will not interrupt and ask, “Who is Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle? What does she look like? How big is she? How old is she? What color is her hair? Is her hair long? Does she wear high heels? Does she have any children? Is there a Mr. Piggle-Wiggle?” –Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald

"Do you believe in magic? Hi there. Yes, I’m talking to you. Well, do you? Do you believe in magic?" –The Magic Misfits by Neil Patrick Harris

"Of the first few hauntings I investigated with Lockwood & Co. I intend to say little, in part to protect the identity of the victims, in part because of the gruesome nature of the incidents, but mainly because, in a variety of ingenious ways, we succeeded in messing them all up." –The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud


Your turn! Which books contain your favorite first lines?

Author: Elza Kinde

Elza is a designer of graphics, reader of Middle Grade, and maker of bad puns. Her creative outlets include hand lettering, blogging, and fiction writing to name a few! You can find her on most social media platforms as @elzakinde.

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