Literature Quotes


What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn't happen much, though.

Authors    Books    Literature    Reading    Writing

Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry.

Clockwork Angel

Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel

Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent

That is part of the beauty of all literature. You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you're not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.

Stories of imagination tend to upset those without one.

There is no surer foundation for a beautiful friendship than a mutual taste in literature.

A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.

Books    Classics    Literature    Meaning    Reading    Words

She read books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live.

The Living

Annie Dillard

The Living
Books    Literature    Reading    Words

Literature is the most agreeable way of ignoring life.

A good book is an event in my life.

Literature is a textually transmitted disease, normally contracted in childhood.

Jane, be still; don't struggle so like a wild, frantic bird, that is rending its own plumage in its desperation."
"I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being, with an independent will; which I now exert to leave you.

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Brontë Brontë

Jane Eyre

Literature is a luxury; fiction is a necessity.

Puns are the highest form of literature.

Funny    Humor    Literature    Puns

Write what you know. That should leave you with a lot of free time.

After all, tomorrow is another day!

Gone With The Wind

Margaret Mitchell

It's not all bad. Heightened self-consciousness, apartness, an inability to join in, physical shame and self-loathing—they are not all bad. Those devils have been my angels. Without them I would never have disappeared into language, literature, the mind, laughter and all the mad intensities that made and unmade me.

That's what literature is. It's the people who went before us, tapping out messages from the past, from beyond the grave, trying to tell us about life and death! Listen to them!

Passage

Connie Willis

Passage
Death    Life    Literature    Messages

What an astonishing thing a book is. It's a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you're inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, an author is speaking clearly and silently inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs. Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic."
[
Cosmos, Part 11: The Persistence of Memory
(1980)]

Cosmos

Carl Sagan

Cosmos
Books    Literature    Reading    Words    Writing

Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.

From that time on, the world was hers for the reading. She would never be lonely again, never miss the lack of intimate friends. Books became her friends and there was one for every mood. There was poetry for quiet companionship. There was adventure when she tired of quiet hours. There would be love stories when she came into adolescence and when she wanted to feel a closeness to someone she could read a biography. On that day when she first knew she could read, she made a vow to read one book a day as long as she lived.

He liked the mere act of reading, the magic of turning scratches on a page into words inside his head.

Books    Literature    Reading    Words

So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.

Matilda

Raold Dahl

Matilda
Books    Literature    Reading    Words

There must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled short of his dreams -- not through her own fault, but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion. It had gone beyond her, beyond everything. He had thrown himself into it with a creative passion, adding to it all the time, decking it out with every bright feather that drifted his way. No amount of fire or freshness can challenge what a man will store up in his ghostly heart.

The Great Gatsby

F. Scott Fitzgerald

I know every book of mine by its smell, and I have but to put my nose between the pages to be reminded of all sorts of things.

Books    Literature    Nose    Reading

Literature is news that stays news.

ABC of Reading

Ezra Pound

ABC of Reading

The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives. She went on olden-day sailing ships with Joseph Conrad. She went to Africa with Ernest Hemingway and to India with Rudyard Kipling. She travelled all over the world while sitting in her little room in an English village.

Matilda

Raold Dahl

Matilda
Books    Literature    Reading    Words

Everybody does have a book in them, but in most cases that's where it should stay.

Without literature, life is hell.

The aim of literature ... is the creation of a strange object covered with fur which breaks your heart.

Come Back, Dr. Caligari

Donald Barthelme

Come Back, Dr. Caligari

When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.

No one says a novel has to be one thing. It can be anything it wants to be, a vaudeville show, the six o’clock news, the mumblings of wild men saddled by demons.

In the end, you have to choose whether or not to trust someone.

Shopaholic & Baby

Sophie Kinsella

Shopaholic & Baby

The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest men of past centuries.

Books    Literature    Reading    Words

Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It's like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can't stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.

Books    Literature    Reading    Words    Writing

Life is not a PG feel-good movie. Real life often ends badly. Literature tries to document this reality, while showing us it is still possible for us to endure nobly.

We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.

I couldn't live a week without a private library - indeed, I'd part with all my furniture and squat and sleep on the floor before I'd let go of the 1500 or so books I possess.

Books    Library    Literature    Reading    Words

The truth is, everyone likes to look down on someone. If your favorites are all avant-garde writers who throw in Sanskrit and German, you can look down on everyone. If your favorites are all Oprah Book Club books, you can at least look down on mystery readers. Mystery readers have sci-fi readers. Sci-fi can look down on fantasy. And yes, fantasy readers have their own snobbishness. I’ll bet this, though: in a hundred years, people will be writing a lot more dissertations on Harry Potter than on John Updike. Look, Charles Dickens wrote popular fiction. Shakespeare wrote popular fiction—until he wrote his sonnets, desperate to show the literati of his day that he was real artist. Edgar Allan Poe tied himself in knots because no one realized he was a genius. The core of the problem is how we want to define literature. The Latin root simply means letters. Those letters are either delivered—they connect with an audience—or they don’t. For some, that audience is a few thousand college professors and some critics. For others, its twenty million women desperate for romance in their lives. Those connections happen because the books successfully communicate something real about the human experience. Sure, there are trashy books that do really well, but that’s because there are trashy facets of humanity. What people value in their books—and thus what they count as literature—really tells you more about them than it does about the book.

I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.

Books    Literature    Meaning    Power    Words

You should never read just for "enjoyment." Read to make yourself smarter! Less judgmental. More apt to understand your friends' insane behavior, or better yet, your own. Pick "hard books." Ones you have to concentrate on while reading. And for god's sake, don't let me ever hear you say, "I can't read fiction. I only have time for the truth." Fiction is the truth, fool! Ever hear of "literature"? That means fiction, too, stupid.

When I was a child, when I was an adolescent, books saved me from despair: that convinced me that culture was the highest of values[...].

The Woman Destroyed

Simone de Beauvoir

The Woman Destroyed

Serious literature does not exist to make life easy but to complicate it.

Every man's memory is his private literature.

Reading is that fruitful miracle of a communication in the midst of solitude.

Books    Literature    Reading    Solitude    Words

You may have noticed that the books you really love are bound together by a secret thread. You know very well what is the common quality that makes you love them, though you cannot put it into words: but most of your friends do not see it at all, and often wonder why, liking this, you should also like that. Again, you have stood before some landscape, which seems to embody what you have been looking for all your life; and then turned to the friend at your side who appears to be seeing what you saw -- but at the first words a gulf yawns between you, and you realise that this landscape means something totally different to him, that he is pursuing an alien vision and cares nothing for the ineffable suggestion by which you are transported. Even in your hobbies, has there not always been some secret attraction which the others are curiously ignorant of -- something, not to be identified with, but always on the verge of breaking through, the smell of cut wood in the workshop or the clap-clap of water against the boat's side? Are not all lifelong friendships born at the moment when at last you meet another human being who has some inkling (but faint and uncertain even in the best) of that something which you were born desiring, and which, beneath the flux of other desires and in all the momentary silences between the louder passions, night and day, year by year, from childhood to old age, you are looking for, watching for, listening for? You have never had it. All the things that have ever deeply possessed your soul have been but hints of it -- tantalising glimpses, promises never quite fulfilled, echoes that died away just as they caught your ear. But if it should really become manifest -- if there ever came an echo that did not die away but swelled into the sound itself -- you would know it. Beyond all possibility of doubt you would say "Here at last is the thing I was made for". We cannot tell each other about it. It is the secret signature of each soul, the incommunicable and unappeasable want, the thing we desired before we met our wives or made our friends or chose our work, and which we shall still desire on our deathbeds, when the mind no longer knows wife or friend or work. While we are, this is. If we lose this, we lose all.

People wonder why the novel is the most popular form of literature; people wonder why it is read more than books of science or books of metaphysics. The reason is very simple; it is merely that the novel is more true than they are.

Sometimes two people have to fall apart, to realize how much they need to fall back together.

My soul is in the sky.

A Midsummer Night's Dream

William Shakespeare

A Midsummer Night's Dream

Literature is strewn with the wreckage of those who have minded beyond reason the opinion of others.

RELATED TOPICS

TOP COLLECTIONS

Get Free Bookmarks Set With Popular Quotes

Or Use

Successfully Saved