Quiz: 53 extracts, but from which books are they? (STILL 11 to guess!!!)



1. Like all the other officers at Group Headquarters except Major Danby, Colonel Cathcart was infused with the democratic spirit: he believed that all men were created equal, and he therefore spurned all men outside Group Headquarters with equal fervor. (1961) Catch-22 (got by professor)
2. It was time to lay it all down. Before Paul D. came and sat on her porch steps words whispered in the keeping room had kept her going. (1987) Beloved (got by Nathaniel)
3. Billy looked at the clock on the gas stove. He had an hour to kill before the saucer came. He went into the living room swinging the bottle like a dinner bell, turned on the television. (1969) Slaughterhouse Five (got by geek)
4. When, during our longer stops, I would relax after a particularly violent morning in bed, and out of the goodness of my lulled heart allow her- indulgent Hum!- to visit the rose garden or children’s library across the street with a motor court neighbor’s plain little Mary and Mary’s eight-year-old brother, Lo would come back an hour late, with barefoot Mary trailing behind, and the little boy metamorphosed into two gangling, golden-haired high school uglies, all muscles and gonorrhea. (1955) Lolita (got by 25092509)
5. It was drizzling and mysterious at the beginning of our journey. I could see that it was all going to be one big saga of the mist. “Whooee!” yelled Dean. “Here we go!” (1957) On the Road (got by openstacks)
6. The elevator dropped me like a shot and I went out and walked along the street. The sun was very bright now and the people along the walk seemed far away. (1952)
7. By midsummer Singer had visitors more often than any other person in the house. From his room in the evening there was nearly always the sound of a voice. After dinner at the New York Café he bathed and dressed himself in one of his cool wash suits and as a rule did not go out again. (1940) The Heart is a Lonely Hunter (got by Nathaniel)
8. GEORGE You see, Martha, here, stops just when the going gets good… just when things start getting a little rough. Now, Martha, here, is a misunderstood little girl; she really is. (1962) Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (got by Nathaniel)
9. She crawled close to his voice. “I wanta touch ya again, Tom. It’s like I’m blin’, it’s so dark. I wanta remember, even if it’s on’y my fingers that remember. You got to go away, Tom.” (1939) The Grapes of Wrath (got by 25092509)
10. Spade’s face was yellow-white now. His mouth smiled and there were smile-wrinkles around his glittering eyes. His voice was soft, gentle. (1930) The Maltese Falcon (got by cmonster)
11. George carefully built his line of solitaire cards. ‘Well, that girl rabbits in an’ tells the law she has been raped. The guys in Weed start a party out to lynch Lennie…’ (1937)Of Mice and Men (got by professor)
12. Eugene’s first year at the university was filled for him with loneliness, pain, and failure. Within three weeks of his matriculation, he had been made the dupe of a half-dozen classic jokes, his ignorance of all campus tradition had been exploited, his gullibility was a byword. (1929) Look Homeward, Angel (got by Nathaniel)
13. Through the fence, between the curling flower spaces, I could see them hitting. They were coming toward where the flag was and I went along the fence. Luster was hunting in the grass by the flower tree. (1929) The Sound and the Fury (got by Nathaniel)
14. There was a light in the concierge’s room and I knocked on the door and she gave me my mail. I wished her good night and went upstairs. There were two letters and some papers. I looked at them under the gas-light in the dining-room. The letters were from the States. (1926) The Sun Also Rises (got by Nathaniel)
15. Madame Olenska put her hand on his arm, and he noticed that the hand was ungloved, and remembered how he had kept his eyes fixed on it the evening that he had sat with her little Twenty-third Street drawing-room. (1920) The Age of Innocence (got by professor)
16. Going out, the same Broadway taught her a sharper lesson. The scene she had witnessed coming down was now augmented and at its height. Such a crush of finery and folly she had never seen. (1900) Sister Carrie (got by cmonster)
17. She was ever so much younger than the one and not so young as the other; but what was there in her, if anything, that would have made it impossible he should meet her at Woollett? (1903)
18. Once or twice of a night we would see a steamboat slipping along in the dark, and now and then she would belch a whole world of sparks up out of her chimbleys, and they would rain down in the river and look awful pretty… (1884) The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (got by professor)
19. “Captain Ahab,” said Starbuck, who, with Stubb and Flask, has thus far been eyeing his superior with increasing surprise, but at last seemed struck with a thought which somewhat explained all the wonder. (1851) Moby Dicky (got by professor)
20. During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher. (1839) The Fall of the House of Usher (got by professor)
21. “What say you, trapper?”, returned the father, showing the slight impression his powerful heel had made on the compact earth, and laughing with frightful ferocity. (1827)
22. Ichabod, who had no relish for this strange midnight companion, and bethought himself of the adventure of Brom Bones with the Galloping Hessian, now quickened his steed, in hopes of leaving him behind. (1820) The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (got by openstacks)
23. In those years, you see, the landowner’s daughter Naseem Ghani contracted a quite extraordinary number of minor illnesses, and each time a shikara wallah was despatched to summon the tall young Doctor sahib with the big nose who was making such a reputation for himself in the valley. (1981) Midnight's Children (got by Nathaniel)
24. Primitive yet complex, elephantine but delicate; as full of subtle curves and volumes as a Henry Moore of a Michelangelo; and pure, clean, salt, a paragon of mass. (1969)
25. Well, we went off now round the corner to Attlee Avenue, and there was this sweets and cancers shop still open. We’d left them alone near three months now and thew hole district had been very quiet on the whole, so the armed millicents or rozz patrols weren’t round there much, being more north of the river these days. (1962) A Clockwork Orange (got by Nathaniel)
26. A gift for the beast. Might not the beast come for it? The head, he thought, appeared to agree with him. Run away, said the head silently, go back to the others. (1954) Lord of the Flies (got by cmonster)
27. One egg, one embryo, one adult-normality. But a bokanovskified egg will bud, will proliferate, will divide. From eight to ninety-six buds, and every bud will grow into a perfectly formed embryo, and every embryo into a full-sized adult. Making ninety-six human beings grow where only one grew before. Progress. (1932) Brave New World (got by professor)
28. “I’m one too,”, the Boy said. He gripped her arm and pushed her out into the dark dripping street. He turned up the collar of his jacket and ran as the lightning flapped and the thunder filled the air. (1938)
29. “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and adjectives, but there are hundreds of nouns that can got rid of as well. (1949) 1984 (got by professor)
30. He was excited partly by his wrongs, but much more by the knowledge that someone sympathized with them. It was this that led him to repeat, exaggerate, contradict. (1924)
31. Like a nun withdrawing, or a child exploring a tower, she went upstairs, paused at the window, came to the bathroom. There was the green linoleum and a tap dripping. There was an emptiness about the heart of life; an attic room. (1925)
32. …and those handsome Moors all in white and turbans like kings asking you to sit down in their little bit of a shop and Ronda with the old windows of the posadas glancing eyes a lattice hid for her lover to kiss the iron and the wineshops hal open at night and the castanets and the night we missed the boat at Algeciras the watchman going about serene with his lamp and O that awful deepdown torrent O and the sea the sea crimson sometimes like fire and the glorious sunsets… (1922) Ulysses (got by Nathaniel)
33. The long, demon-like beast lashed out again, spread on the air as if it were flying, looking something like a dragon, then closing up again, inconceivably powerful and explosive. (1920)
34. Gabriel, leaning on his elbow, looked for a few moments unresentfully on her tangled hair and half-open mouth, listening to her deep-drawn breath. (1914)
35. I had taken up my binoculars while we talked, and was looking at the shore, sweeping the limit of the forest at each side and at the back of the house. The consciousness of there being people in that bush, so silent, so quiet- as silent and quiet as the ruined house on the hill- made me uneasy. There was no sign on the face of nature of this amazing tale that was not so much told as suggested to me in desolate exclamations, completed by shrugs, in interrupted phrases, in hints ending in deep sighs. (1899) Heart of Darkness (got by Penny)
36. ESTRAGON Let’s hang ourselves immediately! VLADIMIR From a bough? (They go towards the tree.) I wouldn’t trust. ESTRAGON We can always try. VLADIMIR Go ahead. ESTRAGON After you. VLADIMIR No no, you first. ESTRAGON Why me? (1953) Waiting for God (got by xfanatic50)
37. LADY BRACKNELL (Sitting Down) You can take a seat, Mr Worthing. (Looks in her pocket for note-book and pencil.) JACK Thank you, Lady Bracknell, I prefer standing. LADY BRACKNELL (Pencil and note-book in hand.) I feel bound to tell you that you are not down on my list of eligible men, although I have the same list as the dear Duchess of Bolton has. (1895) The Importance of Being Earnest (got by professor)
38. I was born in the year 18- to a large fortune, endowed besides with excellent parts, inclined by nature to industry, fond of the respect of the wise and good among my fellow-men, and thus as might have been supposed, with every guarantee of an honourable and distinguished future. (1886) The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (got by cmonster)
39. A Saturday afternoon in November was approaching the time of twilight, and the vast tract of unenclosed wild known as Egdon Heath embrowned itself moment by moment. Overhead the hollow stretch of whitish cloud shutting out the sky was as a tent which had the whole heath for its floor. (1878) The Return of the Native (got by tdunnie)
40. The Hatter opened his eyes very wide on hearing this; but all he said was, “Why is a raven like a writing-desk?” (1865) Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (got by openstacks)
41. My father’s family name being Pirrip, and my Christian name Philip, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer of more explicit than Pip. So, I called myself Pip, and came to be called Pip. (1861) Great Expectations (got by professor)
42. Poor Oliver! He little thought, as he lay sleeping in happy unconsciousness of all around him, that the broad had that very day arrived at a decision which would exercise the most material influence over all his future fortunes. But they had. (1838) Oliver Twist (got by nerid)
43. I wished, yet feared, to find him. I felt the terrible news must be told, and I longed to get it over, but how to do I did not know. (1847) Wuthering Heights (got by cmonster)
44. Some time in the afternoon I raised my head, and looking round and seeing the western sun gilding the sign of its decline on the wall, I asked, “What am I to do?” (1847)
45. An invitation to dinner was soon afterwards dispatched, and already had Mrs. Bennet planned the courses that were to do credit to her housekeeping, when an answer arrived which deferred it all. (1813) Pride and Prejudice (got by professor)
46. Jones retired from the company, in which we have seen him engaged, into the fields, where he intended to cool himself by a walk in the open air before he attended Mr Allworthy. (1749) Tom Jones, A Foundling (got by qky315)
47. Dear Mother, well, I can’t find my letter, and so I’ll try to recollect it all, and be as brief as I can. All went on well enough in the main for some time after my last letter but one. (1741)
48. But my own Distresses silenc’d all these Reflections, and the prospect of my own Starving, which grew every Day more frightful to me, harden’d my Heart of degrees; it was then particularly heavy upon my Mind, that I had been reform’d, and had, as I hop’d, repented of all my pass’d wickednesses; that I had liv’d a sober, grave, retir’d Life for several Years, but now I should be driven the dreadful Necessity of my Circumstances to the Gates of Destruction, Soul and Body… (1722) Moll Flanders (got by Penny)
49. To confirm what I have now said, and further, to show the miserable effects of a confined education, I shall here insert a passage which will hardly obtain belief. In hopes to ingratiate myself farther into his Majesty’s favour, I told him of an invention discovered between three and four hundred years ago, to make a certain powder, into an heap of which the smallest spark of fire falling, would kindle the whole in a moment, although it were as big as a mountain, and make it all fly up in the air together, with a noise and agitation greater than thunder. (1726) Gulliver's Travels (got by qky315)
50. Is this a dagger which I see before me,
The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee:
I have thee not, and yet I see thee still. (1606) Macbeth
(got by bertie)
51. If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth. (1951) The Catcher in the Rye (got by professor)
52. It was the summer that men first walked on the moon. I was very young back then, but I did not believe there would ever be a future. (1989) Moon Palace (got by Wezzo)
53. Robert Langdon awoke slowly. A telephone was ringing in the darkness- a tinny, unfamiliar ring. (2003) The Da Vinci Code (got by openstacks)

Includes some guesses:

1. Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
11. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
15. The Age of Innocence - Edith Wharton
18. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - Mark Twain
19. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
20. The Fall of the House of Usher (opening lines) - Edgar Allen Poe
27. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
29. 1984 - George Orwell
37. The Importance Of Being Earnest - Oscar Wilde
41. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
45. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
50. Romeo and Juliet - William Shakespeare
51. Catcher In The Rye (opening lines) - J. D. Salinger

Remarkable: Everything is right, except for # 50. But Shakespeare is OK...

18, 19, 27, 29, 45 and 50 were all guesses.

Then you guessed very well. ;-)

46. Tom Jones (henry fielding)?

OK, some guesses:

5. On the Road
22. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
40. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
53. Da Vinci Code


50. The Scottish Play by Shakespeare. (It's bad luck to say Macbeth......D'oh!!!)

sorry..missed the spot...
but here are a couple of my guesses for now...
46 henry fielding - Tom Jones
49 jonathan swift - Gullivers Travels


#42 from Oliver Twist


#31 Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

is #3 Slaughterhouse Five?


10. The Maltese Falcon - Dashiell Hammett
12. A Kiss Before Dying - Ira Levin
16. Sister Carrie - Theodore Dreiser
26. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
31. The Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman (or Gilman Perkins, I can never remember)
38. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde - Robert Louis Stevenson

Am I even close?

43. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte

Everything is right, except #12 and #31.

#36 is Waiting For Godot by Samuel Beckett

All right.

52. Moon Palace, Paul Auster?


4. Lolita
9. The Grapes of Wrath?

Yeah, that's it. Congratulations!

I would've got 9 next week.

Ah yes. I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts about it.

39. The Return of the Native - Thomas Hardy

I haven't read it - I remember the Monty Python bit :)

That's it.

02 is Morrison - Beloved
07 is McCullers - The Heart is A Lonely Hunter
08 is [ ] - Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf
12 is Wolfe - Look Homeward, Angel (maybe?)
13 is Faulkner - Sound and the Fury
14 is Hemingway - The Sun Also Rises
23 is Rushdie - Midnight's Children
25 is Burgess - A Clockwork Orange
34 is Joyce - Ulysses
35 is James, maybe? The Awkward Age

This is really remarkable. Everything was correct, with the exception of #34 (the extract is from a book by James Joyce, though) and #35 (cf. Penny's comment below).
Thanks very much for your contribution.
P.S.: Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? is by Edward Albee.

You had me upset for a moment, because the Joyce quote was one I was really sure about. The mistake is mine, however - I meant to write 32 where I wrote 34. 32 really should be Joyce's Ulysses.

OK, #32 is (of course) correct!
P.S.: Hey, this is my post #300!

BTW, here is another (slightly more difficult) extract quiz.

#48 Moll Flanders, Daniel Defoe
#35 Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad

This is to 100% correct.

17, ambassadors?