Tuesday, May 8, 2012

C-C's Top Ten Book Quotes


I can't believe I almost forgot to post this. I was so excited to do this Top Ten because I love underlining and staring passages from books! For this week's Top Ten Tuesday, here are my ten favorite quotes from books (Can I really only do 10? I totally cheated).

10. This first one comes from Bel Canto by Ann Patchett:

Mr. Hosokawa gave him a small, avuncular smile and pretended that there was nothing else to say. That was part of it, too. The private life. Mr. Hosokawa had a private life now. He had always thought of himself as a private man, but now he saw there was nothing in his life before that had been private. It didn't mean that he had no secrets then and now he did. It was that now there was something that was strictly between himself and one other person, that it was so completely their own that it would have been pointless to even try to speak of it to someone else. He wondered now if everyone had a private life...it was possible that all those years he had been alone, never knowing that a complete world existed and no one spoke of it.

9. What angsty pre-teen girl doesn't relate to The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath?

I didn't know why I was going to cry, but I knew that if anybody spoke to me or looked at me too closely the tears would fly out of my eyes and the sobs would fly out of the throat and I'd cry for a week.

and of course there is this one too:

When they asked me what I wanted to be I said I didn’t know."Oh, sure you know," the photographer said."She wants," said Jay Cee wittily, "to be everything.”   

8. From The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

I know where I am, and who, and what day it is. There are the tests, and I am sane. Sanity is a valuable possession; I hoard it the way people once hoarded money. I save it, so I will have enough, when the time comes.

7. This one comes from The Diary of Anne Frank. I love it because I'm an optimist: 

It's difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams, and cherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grim reality. It's a wonder I haven't abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart. 

It's utterly impossible for me to build my life on a foundation of chaos, suffering and death. I see the world being slowly transformed into a wilderness, I hear the approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better, that this cruelty too will end, that peace and tranquility will return once more.

6. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

There's such a lot of different Annes in me. I sometimes think that is why I'm such a troublesome person. If I was just the one Anne it would be ever so much more comfortable, but then it wouldn't be half so interesting.

okay sorry gotta do two:
“Isn't it splendid to think of all the things there are to find out about? It just makes me feel glad to be alive--it's such an interesting world. It wouldn't be half so interesting if we know all about everything, would it? There'd be no scope for imagination then, would there?But am I talking too much? People are always telling me I do. Would you rather I didn't talk? If you say so I'll stop. I can STOP when I make up my mind to it, although it's difficult.”   

5. Of course there is always this classic from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë:

"No, Jane," he returned: "what necessity is there to dwell on the Past, when the Present is so much surer--the Future so much brighter?"

4. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

"I like to see people reunited, maybe that's a silly thing, but what can I say, I like to see people tun to each other, I like the kissing and the crying, I like the impatience, the stories that the mouth can't tell fast enough, the ears that aren't big enough, the eyes that can't take in all of the change, I like the hugging, the bringing together, the end of mission someone..." 

3. The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

"The fact that you got a little happier today doesn't change the fact that you also became a little sadder. Every day you become a little more of both, which means that right now, at this exact moment, you're the happiest and the saddest you've ever been in your whole life...Think about it it. Have you ever been happier than right now, lying here in the grass? And have you ever been sadder? It isn't like that for everyone. Some people just get happier and happier every day. And some people just get sadder and sadder. And some people, like you, get both."

2. Practically every line in my copy of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith is underlined. But ultimately this is my favorite one: 

"People always think that happiness is a faraway thing," thought Francie, "something complicated and hard to get. Yet, what little things can make it up; a place of shelter when it rains-- a cup of strong hot coffee when you're blue; for a man, a cigarette for contentment; a book to read when you're alone--just to be with someone you love. Those things make happiness."

a close second would be

"And that’s where the whole trouble is,” thought Francie. “We’re too much alike to understand each other because we don’t even understand our own selves...”

1.  Even though Middlemarch by George Elliot has a bad rep on this blog, I absolutely love it. My favorite quote from it comes from the last lines of the book:

"But the effect of her being on those around her was incalculably diffusive: for the growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts; and the things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs."

What are your favorite quotes from books? I found myself wanting to quote a lot of children's books. What I learned about myself from this? That I relate best to female authors...