14 April 2011

A chilling and memorable opening paragraph

"There is something distinctive about the sight and sound of a human body falling from the rain forest canopy. The breathless scream, the wildly gyrating arms and legs pumping into thin air, the rush of leaves, snapping branches, and the sickening thud, followed by uneasy silence. Listening to that silence, I reflected on how plant collecting can be an unpleasant sort of activity."
From Orchid Fever: A Horticultural Tale of Love, Lust and Lunacy, by Eric Hansen.



This would make a thrilling start to a novel, but since it's the beginning sentence of a non-fiction book, it's just horrifying. Fortunately we learn that the man survived the fall, but the author takes more than half a page to get to that fact.

1 comment:

Dorte H said...

Hm. I think I can live very well without that one.