The directions note, correctly, that the person reading the answers aloud "will have to pause after many of the answers so that he or she can be heard over the laughter." We think the game is a real hoot! Check out these "first lines" fielded in our most recent game:
"O! 'tis a torture few hath bore, an exile shall be mine eternal punishment greater than that of death." (Alex's made up first line for The Tempest, and Dad fell for it! The real first line from The Tempest? Simply "Boatswain!")
"Wind - a sailor's best and worst friend - is the volatile existence that tears down the lives of so many innocent souls." (Tony's stab at a first line for The Tempest; more Melville than the Bard, methinks...)
"I was angry, I was tired, I was hungry - not a pleasant mix." (Julia's first line for goodness only knows what novel, but it shows she's picked up some practical psychology!
Many rounds we look at each other in amazement, unable to tell the real first line from the imposters. Other times someone misses the mark (Tony, on Sense and Sensibility: "Blood ran down her face; he was more than a lover") and we just burst out laughing.
There's no questioning the educational value of this game. It hones your listening skills, sharpens your writing craft (at least for opening sentences!), and introduces you to books you wouldn't otherwise encounter. We play it, however, just for the fun of it!