Book quotes

Quotes from the rare occasions I remember to write them down! Spoilery quotes in white, so only highlight if you’ve read whatever they’re from.

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It’s funny how you can forget everything except people loving you. Maybe that’s why humans find it so hard getting over love affairs. It’s not the pain they’re getting over, it’s the love.

Along the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta

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“They think of me as my father’s satellite. And so they cannot see me as I am. Anyone who’s ever looked through a telescope should know: perspectives can be distorting.”

“Trust an astronomer to consider it a problem of angles.” Miss Muchelney chuckled weakly, and Catherine’s anxious tension eased, though her heart wouldn’t stop aching. “Not everything can be explained by geometry.”

The Lady’s Guide to Celestial Mechanics by Olivia Waite

x x x

I thought if I made myself write I should find out what is wrong with me, but I haven’t, so far. Unless—could I possibly be jealous of Rose?

I will pause and search my innermost soul.

I have searched it for a solid five minutes. And I swear I am  not jealous of Rose; more than that, I should hate to change  places with her. Naturally, this is mainly because I shouldn’t like to marry Simon. But suppose I were in love with him, as Rose is? That’s too hard to imagine. Then suppose it were Neil—because since he went away I have wondered if I am not just a little bit in love with him. All right, I’m in love with Neil and I’m marrying him and he is the rich one. A thousand pounds is being spent on my trousseau with furs and jewellery coming later. I am to have a wonderful wedding with everyone saying: “What a brilliant match that quiet little girl has made.” We are going to live at Scoatney Hall with
everything we can possibly want and, presumably, lots of the handsomest children. It’s going to be “happy ever after”, just like the fairy tales—

And I still wouldn’t like it. Oh, I’d love the clothes and the wedding. I am not so sure I should like the facts of life, but I have got over the bitter disappointment I felt when I first
heard about them, and one obviously has to try them sooner or later. What I’d really hate would be the settled feeling, with nothing but happiness to look forward to. Of course no life is perfectly happy — Rose’s children will probably get ill, the servants may be difficult, perhaps dear Mrs. Cotton will prove to be the teeniest fly in the ointment. (I should like to know what fly was originally in what ointment.) There are hundreds of worries and even sorrows that may come along, but I think what I really mean is that Rose won’t be wanting things to happen. She will want things to stay just as they are. She will never have the fun of hoping something wonderful and exciting may be just round the corner.

I daresay I am being very silly but there it is! I DO NOT ENVY ROSE. When I imagine changing places with her I get the feeling I do on finishing a novel with a brick-wall happy
ending—I mean the kind of ending when you never think any more about the characters…

—I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

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Did you know that pottery can be repaired with gold?” Kami asked. “Then it’s meant to be stronger than before, and more beautiful. Which is awesome, though it seems expensive.”

Her grandmother had nodded. “Makes sense to me,” she said. “Why be broken when you can be gold?” —Unmade by Sarah Rees Brennan

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He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It’s his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry. —The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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“There was a little padded seat beside the rattling panes and mouldy sand-bags, it was the coldest place in the room; but she kept there for an hour and a half, with a shawl about her, shivering, squinting at her stitches, and sneaking sly little glances at the road to the house.
I thought, if that wasn’t love, then I was a Dutchman; and if it was love, then lovers were pigeons and geese, and I was glad I was not one of them.” —Fingersmith by Sarah Waters, page 110

x x x

These stories have always sounded suspect to Temple—gilt-dipped in nostalgia. In her own experience she’s learned that happiness and sadness find their own level no matter what’s biting you, mosquitoes or meatskins. —The Reapers Are The Angels by Alden Bell, page 29

She remembers again the Miracle of the Fish—the silver-gold bodies darting in circles around her ankles as though she were standing in the middle of another moon—the way things could be perfect like that on occasion—a clear god, a god of messages and raptures—a moment when you knew what you were given a stomach for, for it to feel that way, all tense with magic meaning.
It has become something to her, that memory—something she can take out in dismal times and stare into like a crystal ball disclosing not presages but reminders. She holds it in her palm like a captured ladybug and thinks, Well ain’t I been some places, ain’t I partook in some glorious happenings wanderin my way between heaven and earth. And if I ain’t seen everything there is to see, it wasn’t for lack of lookin. —The Reapers are the Angels by Alden Bell, page 146

Looking down over the guardrails of the roadway, she can see the slugs out there wandering in the rain—some looking curiously upward only to get rain in their eyes. Others sit in the gutters watching the small rivers of water course over them. Sometimes the dead can seem clownish or childlike. She wonders how people could have let such a race of silly creatures push them into the corners and closets of the world. —The Reapers are the Angels  by Alden Bell, page 195

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I was feverish; I couldn’t keep down food. Orma stayed by me the entire time, and I suffered the illusion that behind his skin—behind everyone’s—was a hollow nothingness, an inky black void. He rolled up my sleeve to look at my arm, and I shrieked, believing he would peel back my skin and see the emptiness beneath it. —Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, page 44

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I couldn’t tell them what I was thinking because it seemed cheesy to me, but I was thinking about the universe wanting to be noticed, and how I had to notice it as best I could. I felt that I owed a debt to the universe that only my attention could repay, and also that I owed a debt to everybody who didn’t get to be a person anymore and everyone who hadn’t gotten to be a person yet. —The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, page 294/295

I missed the future. Obviously I knew even before his recurrence that I’d never grow old with Augustus Waters. But thinking about Lidewij and her boyfriend, I felt robbed. I would probably never again see the ocean from thirty thousand feet above, so that the ocean is a great and endless monolith. I could imagine it. I could remember it. But I couldn’t see it again, and it occurred to me that the voracious ambition of humans is never sated by dreams coming true, because there is always the thought that everything might be done better and again.
 This is probably true even if you live to be ninety—although I’m jealous of the people who get to find out for sure. —The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, page 305

x x x

I can feel the elation of every atom in my flesh, brimming with gratitude for the second chance they never expected to get. The chance to start over, to live right, to love right, to burn up in a fiery cloud and never again be buried in the mud. —Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion, page 228

x x x

It was a night of restless dreams, and I awoke before dawn, shivering under my woollen blanket, hearing the howl of the wind and the roar of the sea as it pounded the rocks of the Honeycomb. Not a good day to be abroad. Perhaps Dan Walker and his folk would decide to stay a little longer. But it never did happen that way. They were as true to their time as birds flying away for the winter, their arrivals and departures as precise as the movement of shadows in a sacred circle. You could count your year by them. The golden times. The gray times. It seemed to me the voice of the wind had words in it. I will sweep you bare… bare… I will take all… all… And the sea responded in kind. I am hungry… give me… give… —Child of the Prophecy by Juliet Marillier, page 41


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