Book Beginnings on Friday is a meme hosted by Gilion at Rose City Reader. Anyone can participate; just share the opening sentence of your current read, making sure that you include the title and author so others know what you're reading.
Wondrous Beauty: The Life and Adventures of Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte by Carol Berkin
"She was a Baltimore legend, a curiosity, walking slowly down the streets of the city in the 1870s, her trademark red parasol high above her head to protect her from sun or rain or, in winter weather, draped carefully over one arm."
Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte was out to collect her rents. She tried to escape Baltimore her entire life, but never quite managed it.