The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley (first published 1982). This is the first paragraph of the book's Prologue:
Morgaine speaks...Initial Thoughts:
In my time I have been called many things: sister, lover, priestess, wise-woman, queen. Now in truth I have come to be wise-woman, and a time may come when these things may need to be known. But in sober truth, I think it is the Christians who will tell the last tale. For ever the world of Fairy drifts further from the world in which the Christ holds sway. I have no quarrel with the Christ, only with his priests, who call the Great Goddess a demon and deny that she ever held power in this world. At best, they say that her power was of Satan. Or else they clothe her in the blue robe of the Lady of Nazareth -- who indeed had power in her way, too -- and say that she was ever virgin. But what can a virgin know of the sorrows and travail of mankind?
Well, I love it. I've been loving it for years. I've been intending to read this book, for decades now. I've started it several times, never made it all the way through. I'm thinking of starting it again and reading it for the Once Upon a Time challenge. Thinking about it. The thing that always defeats me is the fact that it's almost 900 pages long -- and at the rate I read, I'll be reading it all year!
So, I don't know. Maybe. Maybe not.
Still love the opening, though. And the subject matter. Hmmmm....?
Rose City Reader hosts Book Beginnings on Fridays. As she says, the idea is to post the first sentence (or so) of the book you're currently reading, along with any first impressions or thoughts you have about the book, the author, etc. It's a wonderful way to add new books to your must-read list, and a chance to connect with other readers and bloggers.