Book Beginnings: Terrier

Thanks to Katy over at A Few More Pages for hosting Book Beginnings.

How to participate: Share the first line (or two) of the book you are currently reading on your blog or in the comments. Include the title and the author so we know what you’re reading. Then, if you would like, let us know what your first impressions were based on that first line, and let us know if you liked or did not like the sentence. The link-up will be at A Few More Pages every Friday and will be open for the entire week.

This week I’m reading Terrier, the first book in Tamora Pierce’s Beka Cooper trilogy. Here are the first few lines:

From the journal of Eleni Cooper, Resident, with her six-year-old son, George Cooper, of Spindle Lane, the Lower City, Corus, the Realm of Tortall.

March 18, 406 [H.E.: the Human Era]

In all those lessons for which I was made to memorize chants and prayers I never used, couldn’t our temple priestesses have taught one-just one!-lesson on what to do with a boy who is too smart for his own good?

The first few lines are pretty good. They let you know who the characters are, where they live, give you a sense of time, introduce you to the book’s structure (it’s written entirely as journal excerpts) and let you know that there may be a bit of magic afoot. At the same time, there’s the universal lament of an unruly child.

Unfortunately, the next bits are rather slow going. I’m about halfway through now, and the pace is finally starting to pick up. We’re following along with Beka Cooper, a new trainee in Tortall’s police force, or Guard. She’s ready to protect the Cesspool in which she grew up from master criminals, serial killers, and whatever other Rats (baddies) lurk around the corner.

Beka, ready to kick some Rat butt.

Some of the terminology is a bit heavy handed. The trainees are constantly referred to as Puppies to the senior Guard Dogs. It’s irritating. But it is very cool that Tamora Pierce has once again created a rich world full of diverse characters with a female lead. Gotta love that.

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4 thoughts on “Book Beginnings: Terrier

  1. 🙂 I like the mental picture I get from this beginning. Her son sounds like my six-year-old–too smart for his own good! LOLThanks for participating in Book Beginnings!

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