Saturday, July 2, 2011

Paperback Game

Paperback Game - Fun With Literary Opening Lines -

Shelf PrOn

The only problem I have with this game is I get twitchy at the thought of even my mass market paperbacks getting shuffled around a kitchen table that could potentially have crumbs or spills on it. #NeedsToLightenUp

Anyways, I'll take a stab at it using a paperback from one one of my shelves as pictured above.

The Whole Man - John Brunner - cover artist Murray Tinkelman

I grabbed John Brunner's The Whole Man. The publisher's blurb goes:
Gerald Howson wanted nothing more than to be like other men -- to move without pain, to live without ridicule -- even after he discovered his remarkable telepathic powers. But the quirk of genetic fate that had warped his body and gifted his mind had also rendered him impervious to medical science. And if, as others before him, he gave in to the dazzling rich but deadly fantasies that allowed him to escape his torment, it would mean death or madness for anyone who tried to save him -- and a human loss as great as any the world had ever known!
One of the following is mine, the other is Brunner's actual start of the novel.

"Good morning, Mr. Howson," chirped the nurse as she opened the curtains and placed the stainless steel tray on the bedside table. The tray was loaded with tiny paper cups, each filled with pills of varying sizes and colors, the medley of pharmaceuticals that altered his body chemistry every morning in an effort to manage his pain, correct hormonal deficiencies, and bring his serotonin levels closer to optimal. Gerald winced as the morning sun flooded his bedroom. He'd been awake for hours.

After the birth they put her in a bed, a large woman wasted by worry and hunger, so that it was not only over her emptied belly that her skin hung old-clothes fashion. In spite of her wide pelvic girdle she had had a difficult labor; the tired faced doctor had judged her a few per cent worse off than those other who competed for space in the hospital ward, so she had been allotted the bed. She showed no sign of appreciation.
I suspect it's not difficult to guess which is the correct answer. Even if I'd stuck to the one sentence rule mine is rather obviously a reaction to the blurb.

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