"That's why I play the trumpet,' Jake said.  'It's an important part of me that I need to express.  That's why you need to write again.  It's an important piece of you.  It doesn't matter if I ever play Carnegie Hall, but it matters that I let the world see me.' "  - The Charm Bracelet by VIola Shipman

"Lolly yanked off her wig...'What? You expected perfection?' Lolly said, touching her curly, thinning, grey-white hair.  'I know I look like a yard sale Barbie.  Why do think I wear a wig?  But I'm not ashamed.  It's just who I am." - The Charm Bracelet by Viola Shipman

"Love what you love without apology." - The Year of Pleasures by Elizabeth Berg

"You can be too rich and too thin, but you can never be too well read or too curious about the world.” - Tim Gunn

"Probably she was sitting propped up in bed reading and heard the brush of wings and smelled the cold clean air and the angel appeared like a deer in the bedroom and Evelyn said 'Not yet, I have to finish this book.'" - Pontoon by Garrison Keillor

 "He talked of the future so easily...But she couldn't start this because then it would end.  Stories like this always ended.  She couldn't take this pleasure, because she would spend the rest of her life missing it, hurting from it." - Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

 "Our mother shook her head...'You girls are all the same like that.  I don't know what we did to give you the idea that you had to be some master in your field by the time you were thirty'...'I don't really want to be a master in my field,' Bean said, 'but I'd like not to be a complete and total f***-up.'  Here we expected our mother to rebuke Bean for her language, but she didn't.  She just smiled indulgently and said, 'Oh, Honey, we're all f***-ups in our own special way.'" - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

"industrial-strength not happy" - If You Were Here by Jen Lancaster

"Being met by the sharp scent of chocolate mingling with the moist scent of brewing coffee had a dark, secretive feel to it, like Willa had finally found the perfect place to hide." - The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen

The Captain attempts to explain Heaven:  "It's all the beauty and serenity and nobility you have ever experienced on earth.  It's all your grandest and most generous feelings, and the finest sunsets and greatest music - and then you're only on the fringe of understanding." - The Ghost and Mrs. Muir by R.A. Dick

I'm sorry that we worried the children, but I've spent most of my adult life worrying about them, so I'm gonna call it even." - The Leisure Seekers by Michael Zadoorian

"I wanted more than anything to be that girl, to be a child again and carry crocus or hawthorn or larkspur instead of buckets of thistle...I wanted to start my life over, on a course that would not lead to this moment...Every decision I'd ever made had led me here, and I wanted to take it all back, the hatred and the blame and the violence.  I wanted to have lunch with my angry ten-year-old self, to warn her of this morning and give her the flowers to point her in a different direction." - The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

"This the kind of story we learn over and over again about everything in the world: your life starts out as a wild open frontier that you explore until the forces of time or history or civilization or nature intervene, and then suddenly it's all gone, it all weathers and falls down and gets built over; everyone dies or moves away or becomes a grainy photograph, and yes, at some point you just get fat and fall off a streetcar.  Progress - it dumps you on your aging and gigantic ass!" - The Wilder Life by Wendy McClure

"He had been smart enough not to have children, so he could never know the peculiar sensation of caring terribly, insanely for a person over whom you had no control; a person who was your responsibility, yet no longer had to answer to you." -Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan.

"'I have everything I've ever wanted right here and now.  My house, my friends, Luc.'  She gave me a stubborn look.  'I'm not going to have any of that taken away from me,' she declared mutinously. . .'Don't look like that, girl.'  Armande gave me a rallying nudge.  'After a five-course banquet, you'd want coffee and liqueurs, wouldn't you? You wouldn't suddenly decide to ruin it all of with a bowl of pap, would you?  Just so you could have an extra course? . . . I'm saying you need to know when to stop, Vianne.  You need to know when to push away your plate and call for those liqueurs.'" -  Chocolat by Joanne Harris 

The world went still.  Time crystallized.  James suddenly saw this moment through the bright shine of sunlight on an icicle...something told James to cherish this fine moment when his father was mentally clear - and to believe every word Dat had said.  A sweetness flowed through him.  For the first time in weeks, James felt peaceful and right with the way things were. - Abby Finds Her Calling by Naomi King

As she looked around the table, at familiar faces lined with love and laughter, Abby realized that gatherings like these were the batting and backing that held the crazy quilt of their lives together.  Every one of these women had her own talents and strengths - added her own colors to the community - yet despite differences of opinion and age, they fit together all of a piece, like the multipatterned squares of this crazy uilt they would complete today. - Abby Finds Her Calling by Naomi King

"Tis a gift to realize that, just when ya feel you've hit rock bottom, ya have - for sure and for certain - landed on the Rock, indeed.  It's God's own hand you're sittin' in." - Summer of Secrets by Charlotte Hubbard

Would I do the chaos, the late night feedings, the challenge and worries?  Would I do the book reports and the piles of laundry and the illnesses?  Would I let them take over my heart so that when they grew up and left home, it created this hollow space that seemed cavernous? - The Great Christmas Bowl by Susan May Warren

"...Daniel's belief in the importance of generations, of one person understanding life through the experiences of all the people who came before." - Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan

"The Church was the only constant companion of Alice's life, the only thing that made sense, always." - 
 Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan 

"Arlo held Kathleen's hand and she squeezed hard, imaging all the ways that motherhood could change a person, ways that you could simply never imagine for yourself until you were stuck right there in the middle of it." - 
 Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan 

"Until recently she thought she had done well.  But, the uncertainty of raising three children could wear on her, even now - especially now.  When she thought about that unpleasant business with Little Daniel and his last job, when she thought about Fiona, she wondered if she was somehow to blame for all of it.  Where were her children at this moment?  Were they wearing seat belts?  Did they still believe in God?  Did they understand not only how to keep house but why?  Had she done enough?  Could a mother ever do enough?" - 
Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan

"We were fairly sure that if anyone made public the various and variegated ways in which being an adult sucked eggs, more people might opt out entirely." - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

"We were never organized readers who would see a book through to its end in any sort of logical order.  We weave in and out of words like tourists on a hop-on, hop-off bus tour.  Put a book down in the kitchen to go to the bathroom and you might return to find it gone, replaced by another of equal interest...Cordy claims this is the source of her inability to focus on anything for more than a few mintues at a time, but we do not believe her.  It is just our way."  - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

"How can we explain what books and reading mean to our family, the gift of libraries, of pages?" -  The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

"I keep waiting to feel old, to feel like a grown-up, but I don't yet.  Do you think that's the big secret adults keep from you?  That you never really feel grown-up?" - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

"She remembered one of her boyfriends asking, offhandedly, how many books she read in a year.
'A few hundred,' she said. 
"How do you have time?' he asked, gobsmacked. 
She narrowed her eyes and considered the array of potential answers in front of her.  Because I don't spend hours flipping through cable complaining there's nothing on?  Because my entire Sunday is not eaten up with pregame, in-game and post-game talking heads?  Because I do not spend every night drinking overpriced beer and engaging in dick-swinging contests with the other financirati?  Because when I am waiting in line, at the gym, on the train, eating lunch, I am not complaining about the wait/staring into space/admiring myself in available reflective surfaces?  I am reading!
'I don't know,' she said, shrugging.
This conversation, you will not be surprised to know, was the impetus for their breakup, given that it caused her to realize the emotion she had thought was her not liking him very much was, in fact, her not liking him at all.  Because despite his money and his looks and all the good-on-paper attributes he possessed, he was not a reader, and, well, let's just say that is the sort of nonsense up with which we will not put."  - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

He had abuse written all over him.  It had happened to him.  He had delivered it.  It was so much a part of his psyche that he couldn't look at another person and not imagine what they would look like with bruises. - The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen

As she walked across the parking lot to her Jeep, she thought she saw a few silver party streamers float into the night sky.  But she blinked and they were gone. - The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen

Their futures were sparkles in the air, waiting to be caught like fireflies. - The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen

"It all goes so fast, she thought. We dole out our lives in dinner parties and plane flights, and it's over before you know it. We lose everyone we love, if they don't lose us first, and every single thing we do is intended to distract us from that reality."  - Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

Shawna: "I just don't understand, that's all."
Anna: "Understand what?" 
Shawna: "Why the universe hands me such random shit."
Anna: "Sometimes the universe has a slow day." -  Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

"DeDe never claimed to be hip, and really didn't care who knew it." -  Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

On receiving a compliment:  "Mary Ann laughed, "You're a shamless liar." But such a lovely friend, she thought." (Isn't that the perfect description of a girlfriend?) -  Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

On visiting a clothing-optional beach:  "I just don't think that people my age should be inflicting their naked selves on the landscape. It's not generally appreciated. It's the same reason I don't litter." -  Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

On traveling through a mountain pass in a snowstorm:  "He was going forty-five around a bend where thirty-five had been suggested, and she'd just caught a glimpse of the gaping chasm beyond the road, the instant oblivion that some people liked to call a View." - Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

As Mary Ann regrets the broken relationship with her daughter, Mrs. Madrigal consoles: "Daughters, you'll find, are surprisingly retrievable." Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin

I turned to the books.  The section I was standing in was full of children's books.  I drifted along, noticing textbooks mingled with pictures books, and an assortment of books you don't usually see in libraries:  family Bibles, photo albums, telephone books.  Some of the books had catalog numbers on their spines, some didn't.  The books weren't arranged by subject, and some of the numbers seemed to belong to different systems.  In fact, the books seemed to belong to many different libraries. - The Night Bookmobile by Audrey Niffenegger

It is given to few people in this world to disappear twice but, as he had succeeded once,the man known as James T. Kettleman was about to make his second attempt.  If he did not succeed this time he would never know, for he would be dead. - Flint by Louis L'Amour

Well, Mary Ann and I had this really heavy session where she told me she wanted to go back to Cleveland, and I gave her the whole est trip about taking control of her life and all...but the creepy thing is that sometimes I think she's right.  Maybe we should all go back to Cleveland."  - Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin

""I need....some sort of security, Mouse.  I'm thirty-one years old...I'm sick of buying clothes at Goodwill and pretending they're funky.  I want a bathroom you can clean and a microwave oven and a place to plant roses and a dog who'll recognize me when I come home."  - Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin

"Man, I did love this game. I'd have played for food money. It was the game... The sounds, the smells. Did you ever hold a ball or a glove to your face?...It was the crowd, rising to their feet when the ball was hit deep. Shoot, I'd play for nothing!" (Shoeless Joe Jackson) - Field of Dreams

And they'll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They'll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they'll watch the game and it'll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they'll have to brush them away from their faces...It reminds us of all that once was good and could be again. (Terrance Mann) Field of Dreams

That's what I wish for. Chance to squint at a sky so blue that it hurts your eyes just to look at it. To feel the tingling in your arm as you connect with the ball. To run the bases - stretch a double into a triple, and flop face-first into third, wrap your arms around the bag. (Doc Graham)  - Field of Dreams

Mirroring my passion for antiques was Olivia's strong relationship with books.  She devoured them and often read as many as five a week.  She hunted them down, mended their wounds, and brought them back to life. - Looking for Me by Beth Hoffman

My mother's eyes became watery and sad.  "Not all that long ago, I went to bed thinking I looked pretty good for my age.  I swear, when I woke up the next morning, a haggard old woman was staring back at me in the mirror." - Looking for Me by Beth Hoffman

1 comment:

  1. Got to perusing these last night - absolutely loved many of them - I will return here often just to reread them. I got some good book ideas also - Maine for instance is a half to read.