If you don't catch the reader in the first chapter, you probably won't catch their attention. To do this there are a number things that will catch the reader's attention.
The major conflict -This is the driving force of the book. Could be a meeting, a murder, a testing of wills. The major conflict needs to be strong enough to carry the book.
A minor conflict that has something to do with the major conflict. A meeting between a hero and heroine that doesn't go well. The murdered completelyescaping. Someone planning a crime that will have an impact on the other characters.
Presenting a "plant." Easy to do in a murder mystery, This needs to be unobtrusive. The plant could be something the characters learn later in the book. In a story I'm reading the heroine takes a job where it is absolutely forbidden for one of the employees to be sought out for romance by the owner's son --unless he ahs met her before.
Making the reader care about one or more than one of the characters. At present I'm working on a story where the heroine garners this kind of interest by the reader and the other characters now to much. Even the hero will need to make a great change before he can be the hero.
In the first chapter the kind of story needs to be established. Tone and style are important. I judge a lot of questions and have seen stories start out to be one thing and end up another. A historical where the language sounds modern. I've read romances that sound like something other than a romance or a mystery when there is no puzzle to interest the reader in the story because the mystery isn't strong enough in the first chapter.