I promised answers to the great first lines later.
It's later now.
Before giving them, though, I must give kudos to Jamie. She got 7 of the 8 correct. Word Nerd will have to hunt down some past literature teachers of other players of the first line game.
Without further adieu -- the answers.
1. It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
2. Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show. David Copperfield, by Charles Dickens
3.In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
4. He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf stream and he had gone 84 days now without taking a fish. The Old Man and the Sea, by Ernest Hemingway
5. Marley was dead, to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens
6. No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scru- tinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. War of the Worlds, by H.G. Wells
7. At a village of La Mancha, whose name I do not wish to remember, there lived a little while ago one of those gentlemen who are wont to keep a lance in the rack, an old buckler, a lean horse and a swift greyhound. Don Quixote, by Miguel Cervantes
8. Mr. Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance, that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary and yet somehow lovable. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson