1. To Kill a Mockingbird- Harper Lee
When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem's fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self- conscious, about his injury. His left arm was somewhat shorter than his right; when he stood or walked, the back of his hand was at right angles to his body, his thumb parallel to his thigh. He couldn't have cared less, so long as he could pass and punt.
This functions as an effective lead because the person talking, is talking sort of as if they know you already, and they are telling you about his/her brother. We don't know who is talking, and we don't necessarily know what this story is going to be about but it makes you want to find out just from the tone of voice the person speaking it using.
2. Alias Grace- Margaret Atwood
Out of the gravel there are peonies growing. They come up through the loose grey pebbles, their buds testing the air like snails' eyes, then swelling and opening, huge dark-red flowers all shining and glossy like satin. Then they burst and fall to the ground.
In the one instant before they come apart they are like the peonies in the front garden at Mr. Kinnear's, that first day, only those were white. Nancy was cutting them. She wore a pale dress with pink rose buds and a triple- flounced skirt, and a straw bonnet that hid her face.
This lead drew me in right away. I loved the way she talked about the peonies and then referred back to them from her own personal experience. I like the feel when who ever is speaking like as if you were there, like as if they know something you don't know and the reader is faking it until they find out what the person is talking about... which they will. It basically just functioned as an effective hook because it made me want to read more.
3. Different seasons- Stephen King