Thursday, June 14, 2007

Great First Lines - The Crimson Petal and the White

Den här romanen som har den tramsiga titeln Sugar (efter hjältinnan) på svenska har en inledning som jag minns än idag, flera år efter att ha läst den. Här räcker det inte med några första rader utan det får bli lite mer - och det som följer fortsätter suga tag i en. Romanen utspelar sig till en början i Londons slum under 1870-talet och inledningen realiserar en mångårig dröm/fruktan hos mig: tänk om jag helt plötsligt befinner mig i en annan tid...

Several years after having read this novel, I still remember the first few paragraphs. Mere lines are not enough to illustrate the experience I had. The story is set in the 19th century London slum and the beginning perfectly realizes one of my long-felt fears/dreams: what would it be like to wake up in a time other than my own...?

"Watch your step. Keep your wits about you; you will need them. This city I am bringing you to is vast and intricate, and you have not been here before. You may imagine, from other stories you've read, that you know it well, but those stories flattered you, treating you as if you belonged. The thruth is that you are an alien from another time and place altogether.

When I first caught your eye and you decided to come with me, you were probably thinking you would simply arrive and make yourself at home. Now that you're actually here, the air is bitterly cold, and you find yourself being led along in complete darkness, stumbling on uneven ground, recognising nothing. Looking left and right, blinking agaist an icy wind, you realise you have entered an unknown street of unlit houses full of unknown people."

Från The Crimson Petal and White av Michel Faber (Canongate, 2003)

1 comment:

Zabina said...

Oj. Skickligt att lyckas tala till läsaren på ett sådant gripande sätt. Den får man kanske ta och läsa.