Ahh quotes, who doesn’t love them? Well, a few people actually, but that’s beside the point. I have often thought a sign of a good book is when it is quotable, when it has lines in it that you want to memorise so you can go and tell all your friends, regardless of whether or not your friends even care about it. In many cases, those quotes are unique to that writer and their style of writing, and can remain as powerful out of context as they are in context.
For this day’s challenge, I’m going to show a few of my favourite quotes from a number of my favourite books, because picking one is just plain impossible! So here goes:
- “He was going to live forever, or die in the attempt.”
- “There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one’s safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn’t, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn’t have to; but if he didn’t want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.”
- “Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.”
- “I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”
- “In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.”
- “My doctor says that I have a malformed public-duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fiber, and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes.”
- “Man is a bird without wings and a bird is a man without sorrow.”
From Captain Corelli’s Mandolin:
- “It was an idea so inconceivable he had never even conceived of conceiving it.”
- “All I ask is the chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.”
- “And God said, ‘Let there be light’ and there was light, but the Electricity Board said He would have to wait until Thursday to be connected.”
- “How long was I in the army? Five foot eleven.”
- “I can speak Esperanto like a native.”
- “Old Professors never die, they just lose their faculties.”
- “You are who you are when nobody’s watching.”
- “It is a cliché that most clichés are true, but then like most clichés, that cliché is untrue.”
I could go on for days, but I’ll stop there! What is surprising is that about half of these I knew off the top of my head without looking them up, so there you go.
Do you have any favourite quotes from books or authors you’d like to share?