Top 5 Friday: Favorite Book Quotes
I know this is a day late, but I’m pretending it isn’t because last week’s entry on poetry was updated a day early.
When I was a little girl, I didn’t have any friends. Wow, you might say. What a crappy way to begin a blog entry! I know, right? It was pretty sad. I didn’t get along with other kids because my parents dressed me in brightly colored spandex and leg warmers. I was the “weird kid” who asked too many questions, took notes during conversations (I was going to be a journalist, damnit!), and my nose was always buried in a book.
I envisioned myself as a Harriet the Spy and Matilda hybrid that nobody understood and would eventually be famous.*
* I am 23 years old and still not famous.
I’m not really complaining — After all, the kids in school thought I was odd but I had the best friends in the world by my side — stories! I went on adventures to other worlds, I used my magic wand to fight off Voldemort, I attended Sweet Valley High School when I was eight years old and RL Stine taught me to stay away from basements, bunnies and pool drains. I’d say I had a pretty rockin’ childhood, even if I never got invited to slumber parties and only seven people showed up for my tenth birthday — Including my brother and cousin.
I grew up with a head full of whimsy and a vocabulary at the age of eleven full of words like “benevolence” and “stoicism”. My weirdness only got worse (or better, depending on how you feel about that sort of thing!), but eventually I found other like-minded individuals who could recite Shakespeare and wax philosophical on the major plot points of whatever pretentious new fiction novel we covered in our book club.
Eventually I realized that books weren’t my problem, they were my savior. I learned, I lived and I grew into a person capable of seeing the “big picture” rather than just what was right in front of me. I’ll always be grateful to my very first librarian friend, who gave me a huge bag full of her daughter’s old books and said, “Go home and read. Come back when you’re done, and I’ll give you more.”
Top 5 Favorite Quotes from Books!
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
“You are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read. You have been in every prospect I have ever seen – on the river, on the sails of the ships, on the marshes, in the clouds, in the light, in the darkness, in the wind, in the woods, in the sea in the streets. You have been the embodiment of every graceful fancy that my mind has ever become accquainted with. The stones of which the strongest London buildings are made are not more real, or more impossible to be displaced by your hands, than your presence and influence have been to me, there and everywhere, and will be. To the last hour of my life, you cannot choose but remain part of my character, part of the little good in me, part of the evil. But in this separation, I associate you only with the good, and I will faithfully hold you to that always, for you must have done me far more good than harm. Let me feel now what sharp distress I may.”
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
“I like too many things and get all confused and hung-up running from one falling star to another till I drop. This is the night, what it does to you. I had nothing to offer anybody except my own confusion.”
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
“You – you alone will have the stars as no one else has them… In one of the stars I shall be living. In one of them I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing, when you look at the sky at night. You – only you – will have stars that can laugh.”
V for Vendetta by Alan Moore
“But it was my integrity that was important. Is that so selfish? It sells for so little, but it’s all we have left in this place. It is the very last inch of us. But within that inch we are free.”
Admittedly, I’ve never read this. The art in it just makes me feel gross, so I’ve always avoided it. After the movie came out though, I really liked the part where Valerie’s letter was read and this part of it always stuck with me. When I found out that it was also in the graphic novel, I added it into my personal list of book quotes and it’s been one of my favorites ever since.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
“I wanted to get out and walk eastward toward the park through the soft twilight, but each time I tried to go I became entangled in some wild, strident argument which pulled me back, as if with ropes, into my chair. Yet high over the city our line of yellow windows must have contributed their share of human secrecy to the casual watcher in the darkening streets, and I was him too, looking up and wondering. I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.”