IF YOU ARE ANYTHING LIKE ME ...
... then you'll read the first page of a book before you buy it. I find that if I like the first page, then I'll probably like the whole thing. I have noticed that many books have an exciting excerpt on the first page in order to grab the reader's interest, such as:
The zombie's filthy claws clutched hungrily at Jack's shirt, even as his blade split the creature's head like a ripe melon. A firm kick to its headless torso sent it sprawling down the stairs into the greedy mob that surged forward like a wave. The corpse's undead brothers and sisters paused their onslaught until they realized the decapitated body was just dead meat. Their hesitation gave Jack a second to spare a glance over his shoulder and see that Evelyn had finally reached the helicopter. Jack braced himself for the oncoming mob. "Get that thing started! I can't hold them off forever!" he yelled, as he severed several greedily clutching hands from their wrists. "But, Jack!" Evelyn screamed back, frantically flipping switches. "I don't know HOW to fly a helicopter!"
Not that I would ever resort to such cheap tactics in this book. I have also noticed that some books try to gain respectability by publishing a positive quote from an industry professional or famous person on their first page:
I learned more from reading the first page of Level Up! The Book of Great Video Game Design than I learned in working for 25 years in the video game industry!
A very famous game designer ...