Top Ten Favorite Book Quotes

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by
The Broke and the Bookish. This week is a rewind, a chance to go back through the archives and pick a Top Ten topic you missed. I'm not sure how I missed favorite book quotes, but here they are. It was hard for me to narrow them down to ten, but I did my best:

1. "We mortals, men and women, devour many a disappointment between breakfast and dinner-time; keep back the tears and look a little pale about the lips, and in answer to inquiries say 'Oh Nothing!'" - George Eliot, Middlemarch

2. "Sometimes I imagined stitching all of our little touches together. How many hundreds of thousands of fingers brushing against each other does it take to make love?" - Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

3. "I believe that theres is one story in the world, and only one... Humans are caught - in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too - in a net of good and evil... there is no other story." - John Steinbeck, East of Eden

4. "No matter how much you know, no matter how much you think, no matter how much you plot and connive and you plan, you're not superior to sex. It's a very risky game. A man wouldn't have two-thirds of the problems he has if he didn't venture off to get fucked. It's sex that disorders our normally ordered lives." - Philip Roth, The Dying Animal

5. "and I thought how unpleasant it is to be locked out; and I thought how it is worse perhaps to be locked in." -Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own

6. "sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living." - Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

7. "I am, to be blunt and concise, in love only with myself, my puny being with its small inadequate breasts and meager, thin talents. I am capable of affection for those who reflect my own world." - Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath

8. "Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering." - Nichole Krauss, The History of Love

9. "Love blurs your vision; but after it recedes, you can see more clearly than ever. It's like the tide going out, revealing whatever's been thrown away and sunk: broken bottles, old gloves, rusting pop cans, nibbled fishbodies, bones. This is the kind of thing you see if you sit in the darkness with open eyes, not knowing the future. The ruin you've made." - Margaret Atwood, Cat's Eye

10. "Some of us look for the way in opium and some in God, some of us in whisky and some of us in love. It is all the same way and it leads nowhither." - W. Somerset Maugham, The Painted Veil


  1. I love that History of Love quote. I don't remember being super into the book when I read it however many years ago, but that line makes me want to reread. I guess that's what a well-chosen quote does, though.

    -- Ellen

  2. These are all great, particularly The History of Love and East of Eden quotes. Really great.

  3. The Painted Veil is one of my favorite books. Love this quote!

  4. I did quotes as well. You have a bunch on here I've never seen before - I especially like #5 and #8. My list of quotes is here.

  5. Oh, the History of Love quote is just lovely. And I don't know the first thing about The Painted Veil, but I love that quote as well!

  6. I'm another fan of that History of Love quote - Krauss has a special way with words. :-)

  7. The History of Love quote is beyond sweet! I love it! Makes me want to re-read the book.

  8. That Philip Roth quote is freakin' awesome - and so emblematic of his entire oeuvre! He may be a dirty old man, but he is a wise one.

    And, despite my tough guy facade (ha!), I love that History of Love quote, too. On pg. 62, she also says "Her kiss was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering." She's good.

    I did post that included my own favorite literary quotes awhile ago - here ya go. (You commented on it, so apparently you've already seen it. Sorry for the blatant self-promotion.)

  9. Greg, No problem! I enjoy quotes so I wouldn't mind going back to read yours, especially since it was awhile ago. Blatant self-promotion works for you :)

  10. Love these quotes. Our centerpieces at my wedding were old stacks of books with framed quotes from my favorite authors on top and I used that History of Love quote. Here they are if you want to see them!


  11. Another quote collector, awesome! I've never read any of these books, but they all sound fabulous. Makes me want to read them all!

  12. Love these quotes! Brilliant.

    Here's my post for Top Ten Tuesday, a list of the books that most intimidate me.

    And I'll be part of the Easter Eggstravaganza Blog Hop Giveaway that begins tomorrow. I hope you will stop by my blog and enter my giveaways to try to win some great prizes.

  13. I love literary quotes, but rarely take the time to write them down as I read. These were wonderful quotes culled from great books.

  14. So good. The History of Love quote reinforces the fact that I need to read it.

    Here is my list

  15. Whoa, you're like my book quote soulmate! Really good choices :)