A good joke depends on its punchline, and a good comic sentence in a novel relies on its last word. One good example is the Michael Chabon sentence I quoted last week. Another is a great sentence from a New York Times magazine piece by the not-widely-enough-beloved Matthew Klam:
In Boston, the day before the convention started and after a long, glittering night following the Wonkette to fancy parties, I came back late and found Josh Marshall in my hotel room, lying sideways on a cot, blogging.
And here’s one from the book I’m reading right now, On Beauty by Zadie Smith. I have an annoying habit of avoiding looking at things that are very heavily promoted as being great. I never saw Pulp Fiction or read anything by Jonathan Safran Foer or Dave Eggers. But often things are heavily promoted as being great because they are great! So it is with Zadie Smith, it turns out. Anyway, here’s a winner of a sentence:
“But you’ve already privileged the term,” says the professor’s daughter, whom Katie, who is not given easily to hatred, hates.”
[some sentences about why I like the last words of these three sentences deleted because I didn’t see how to say anything on this topic in a way that interested me more than pressing on reading On Beauty.]