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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘The Cabinetmaker’ by Alan Jones

(Sunday April 30th 1978 4pm)

I took to Francis Hare from the first time I met him. He had a dignity and inner strength about him, and despite the circumstances of our first meeting, there was a warmth that showed through at unexpected moments, when you got to know him.

We met in Partick police station, not long after his only son had been brutally beaten and left bleeding to death in the street…

I deliberately took my lines from the first chapter of the book, rather than from the preceeding prologue pages.

Personally, I would consciously avoid a prologue page if I was perusing the book in a store, as I often find that such excerpts contain too may spoilers for my liking. Are you a prologue reader, or not?

If those first few lines aren’t quite enough for you, you can find out more about both book and author, whilst you check out the excellent, unique and headline grabbing guest post that Alan and his friends put together here


A picture button for book beginnings at Rose City ReaderWould the first few lines of your book make you want to read on?

If so, would you like to share them with us, (without revealing too many spoilers of course) ?

Click here and visit your host, Gilion @ Rose City Reader

You can then leave a link to your own book beginnings post, or just browse for some great reads, there are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered.

Don’t forget that Gilion and all the other contributors to this meme love to hear from you, so why not leave a comment or two at the same time?

I can’t wait to do a little blog hopping myself and check out all the great Book Beginnings you have!


As this was an author review request, I received a complimentary Kindle download copy of the book directly from Alan Jones.

This will in no way influence any comments I may express about the book, in any blog article I may post. Any thoughts or comments are my own personal opinion and I am in no way being monetarily compensated for this, or any other article.


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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • When perusing a book in a store, I usually will look at a prologue (as well as the first chapter). For me, it rarely spoils a book – getting this glimpse into either the future or the past – but makes me want to know even more. So often what I think I gleaned from reading it the first time turns out to be incorrect. Flipping back to it at a later point in the book brings everything into focus. (and it’s a time I prefer a “real” book to one on my Kindle)

    I’m still in my first Dickens selection, so here are the opening lines from The Cricket on the Hearth:

    “The kettle began it! Don’t tell me what Mrs. Peerybingle said. I know better. Mrs. Peerybingle may leave it on record to the end of time that she couldn’t say which of them began it; but, I say the kettle did.”

    • Hi Kelly,

      I agree that flipping backwards and forwards through a book, is actually much easier with a physical copy, rather than an e-version, although I have to say that I wouldn’t now be without my Kindle.

      It really is much more convenient than balancing a physical copy on your lap, whilst trying not to break or damage the spine, which is something I hate to see! I have to discard so may great sounding books which get donated into the charity shop for this very reason, as it is company policy to recycle these books, rather than try to resell them! I really wish that people would be more careful in the way in which they handle a book.

      I will try not to read a prologue before getting started on the actual story, however just to satisfy myself, I did go back and read the prologue of this book and sure enough, there were more than enough spoilers for my liking.

      I am completely foxed by your opening lines, they really are the teasers of the day for me! The protagonists in your excerpt have a fantastic name, which I did try to check out on the off-chance that it actually meant something, but surprise, surprise, I turned up a blank there! I also checked out the synopsis, to try and discover just where the kettle fits into the equation, but I guess I am just going to have to read the book to find that one out:)

      I hope that I didn’t spoil this week’s meme too much for you, by not quoting the very first lines from ‘The Cabinetmaker’ and I hope that you continue to enjoy your Thanksgiving weekend.

    • Hi Lorraine,

      Perhaps, as the prologue lines were literally the ‘first lines’ or ‘book beginning’, I should have featured them in the spirit of the meme. However I too, like the way that we are immediately drawn into the character of Francis, with just the hint of the his story to come.

      Thanks for stopping by and I hope that you enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving weekend 🙂

  • I was hooked at the title. 🙂 My father was a cabinetmaker. Love the beginning even though the circumstances aren’t pleasant.

    I do read prologues. I will have to see if there are spoilers. I haven’t noticed any unless I am oblivious. 🙂

    It is nice to see you in this meme, Yvonne.

    ENJOY your weekend.

    Silver’s Reviews
    My Book Beginnings

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      If your Dad was a cabinetmaker, you should definitely check out the link to Alan’s guest post, I think the video clip will bring back memories and hopefully make you smile:)

      I think that very benign title is disguising quite a hard hitting storyline, which if it is true to its Glasgow roots, will be brutally honest and have no holds barred on the violence and language used to decribe a given situation.

      I have been taking part in Book Beginnings for several years now, although, as with many of the regular memes in which I participate, I may not contribute every time.

      Hope you are having a good weekend so far.

    • Hi Nyze,

      This is a Scotsman, writing about the people he knows best, in a style and language suited to their forthright actions and straight-talking ways – definitely not one for the faint-hearted by the sound of things!

      Thanks for stopping by this week and I hope that your weekend is going well so far:)

  • Thanks for your steady participation in BBOF! I always look forward to your thoughtful posts, even though I seldom have time to leave comments.

    I love prologues in books, but I never read them when deciding whether to get a book in the first place, because they may be intentionally misleading. I usually read the covers and some random paragraph in the middle.

    • Hi Gilion,

      Thank YOU, for continuing to be such a gracious host over at BBOF, it is such an excellent meme and I really appreciate that you have added the ‘early bird’ element, for those of us in differing time zones.

      I generally will read the prologue when starting a book for ‘real’, however I don’t usually bother with them when choosing a book to buy, as I do find they tend to drop very large hints about what is to come in the story. As a rule, when buying, I will read the author blurb, the synopsis and those all important first lines of the first chapter!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, it is always good to touch base with you, no matter how infrequently 🙂

Written by Yvonne