The Language Inside by Holly ThompsonToday we’ll be looking at The Language Inside by author Holly Thompson.

Let’s look at what Holly does to hook us on the first page of this novel.

The Page


third time it happens
I’m crossing the bridge
over a brown-green race of water
that slides through town
on my way to a long-term care center
to start volunteering

to get my courage up

Why It Works

Whoa. First of all, I’m completely captivated by the beautiful rhythm and language of this opening. And then to have “third time it happens.” Third time what happens? I’m immediately drawn in. And is she walking? Biking? Driving? My bet is on one of the first two because it’s hard to “pause” in a car, but I like the ambiguity, the slight tension it creates for me. And then there’s that pause so she can get her courage up. Is it just the usual angst about entering a care center or is there something else that makes her hesitate? Wow. Awesome opening!