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.
Hawaii by James A. Michener
"Millions upon millions of years ago, when the continents were already formed and the principal features of the earth had been decided, there existed, then as now, one aspect of the world that dwarfed all others."
That feature is the ocean. And eventually volcanoes will create the Hawaiian archipelago. I don't normally like when an author starts a book millions of years before the plot begins, but it works here. Michener does an insane amount of research, but it doesn't feel like a huge info dump. It just feels like he begins at the beginning.