Notable Quotables

“We exist because of suburbia. Suburbia is a freak’s dreamworld, a world of extra rooms upstairs and long, lazy afternoons with no interference. A place where you can listen to your LPs for hours on end. You can live in your room, your own rent-free corner of the universe, and create a world of pleasure and interest entirely centered on yourself and your interior aesthetic and logic.”

—Dana Spiotta, Eat the Document

“Stop torturing yourself, her friends said. Stop living in the past. He was gone. Capital G—Gone. He wasn’t coming back. She should focus not on the pain, but on the possibility. Something good would come from all this heartache, something always did. Everything, her friends told her, happened for a reason. She should start looking for a silver lining. She thought she might start looking for new friends.”

—Aryn Kyle, Boys and Girls Like You and Me

“Women fall in love when they get to know you. Men are just the opposite. When they finally know you they’re ready to leave.”

— James Salter, Dusk and Other Stories

“There is so much hurt in this game of searching for a mate, of testing, trying. And you realize suddenly that you forgot it was a game, and turn away in tears.”

—Sylvia Plath, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

“You know, it’s quite an undertaking to start loving somebody. You have to have energy, generosity, blindness… There is even a moment, right at the start, where you have to jump across an abyss; if you think about it you don’t do it.”

— Jean-Paul Sartre, Nausea

“It was always the view of my parents,” Emily said, “that hot weather encouraged loose morals among young people.”

— Ian McEwan, Atonement

“It is weird, and lovely, how sex changes everything, how there is no predicting what will happen until you’re there on the other side with your swollen lips and unrolling your underwear from the bunched top sheet.”

—Dana Spiotta, Stone Arabia

“There seemed to be something tragic in a friendship so coloured by romance.”

— Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

“The best revenge, like the best sex, is performed slowly, and with the eyes open.”

— Gregory David Roberts, Shantaram

“So many people at college were jacked up on ambition, possessors of steroidal egos, clever but cutthroat, diligent but insensitive, shiny but dull, that everyone felt compelled to be upbeat, down with the program, all system firing, when everyone knew, in his or her heart, that this wasn’t how they really felt.”

—Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot


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