Quotes from Just Listen

Sarah Dessen ·  371 pages

Rating: (214.8K votes)


“Don't think or judge, just listen.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“There comes a time when the world gets quiet and the only thing left is your own heart. So you'd better learn the sound of it. Otherwise you'll never understand what it's saying.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Music is a total constant. That's why we have such a strong visceral connection to it, you know? Because a song can take you back instantly to a moment, or a place, or even a person. No matter what else has changed in your or the world, that one song says the same, just like that moment.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“So you're always honest," I said.
"Aren't you?"
"No," I told him. "I'm not."
"Well, that's good to know, I guess."
"I'm not saying I'm a liar," I told him. He raised his eyebrows. "That's not how I meant it, anyways."
"How'd you mean it, then?"
"I just...I don't always say what I feel."
"Why not?"
"Because the truth sometimes hurts," I said.
"Yeah," he said. "So do lies, though.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Because this is what happens when you try to run from the past. It just doesn’t catch up, it overtakes … blotting out the future.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen



“There comes a time in every life when the world gets quiet and the only thing left is your heart.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“All I'd ever wanted was to forget. but even when I thought I had, pieces had kept emerging, like bits of wood floating up to the surface that only hint at the shipwreck below.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“No matter how much time has passed, these things still affect us and the world we live in. If you don't pay attention to the past, you'll never understand the future. It's all linked together.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“I wondered which was harder, in the end. The act of telling, or who you told it to. Or maybe if, when you finally got it out, the story was really all that mattered.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“There has to be a middle. Without it, nothing can ever truly be whole. Because it is not just the space between, but also what holds everything together.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen



“This is the problem with dealing with someone who is actually a good listener. They don’t jump in on your sentences, saving you from actually finishing them, or talk over you, allowing what you do manage to get out to be lost or altered in transit. Instead, they wait, so you have to keep going.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“I was beginning to see, though, that the unknown wasn't always the greatest thing to fear. The people who know you best can be risker, because the words they say and things they think have the potential to be not only scary but true, as well.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“So many versions of just one memory, and yet none of them were right or wrong. Instead, they were all pieces. Only when fitted together, edge to edge, could they even begin to tell the whole story.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Music is the great uniter. An incredible force. Something that people who differ on everything and anything else can have in common.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“The past did affect the present and the future, in ways you could see and a million ones you couldn't. Time wasn't a thing you could divide easily; there was no defined middle or beginning or end. I could pretend to leave the past behind, but it would not leave me.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen



“It was like when you're a little kid and you run into your teacher or librarian at the grocery store or Wal-mart and it's just so startling, because it never occurred to you they existed outside of school.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“I thought again how you could never really know what you were seeing with just a glance, in motion, passing by. Good or bad, right or wrong. There was always so much more.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Like a word on a page that you’ve printed and read a million times, that suddenly looks strange or wrong, foreign. And you feel scared for a second, like you’ve lost something, even if you’re not sure what it is.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Pieces and parts were always easier to process. The full picture, the entire story, was another thing entirely. But you just never knew. Sometimes, people could surprise you.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“All you could do was take on as much weight as you can bear. And if you're lucky, there's someone close enough by to shoulder the rest.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen



“So while it seemed like you were seeing everything, you really weren't. Just bits and pieces that looked like a whole.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Because the truth sometimes hurts," I said.
Yeah," he said. "So do lies, though.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“Because this is what happens when you try to run from the past. it doesn't just catch up: it overtakes, blotting out the future, the landscape, the very sky, until there is no path left except that which leads through it, the only one that can ever get you home.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“She knew I could tell with one glance, one look, one simple instant. It was her eyes. Despite the thick makeup, they were still dark-rimmed., haunted, and sad. Most of all though, they were familiar. The fact that we were in front of hundreds of strangers changed nothing at all. I'd spent a summer with those same eyes-scared, lost, confused-staring back at me. I would have known them anywhere.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“I'd been convinced I was on the outside, but really, I'd always been within arm's reach. All I had to do was ask, and I, too, would be easily brought back, surrounded and immersed, finding myself safe, somewhere in between.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen



“I am the middle sister. The one in between. Not oldest, not youngest, not boldest, not nicest. I am the shade of gray, the glass half empty or full, depending on your view. In my life, there has been little that I have done first or better than the one preceding or following me. Of all of us, though, I am the only one who has been broken.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“I understood now. This voice, the one that had been trying to get my attention all this time, calling out to me, begging me to hear it -- it wan't Will's. It was mine.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


“instead, we just sat there, together but really apart, watching a show about a stranger and all her secrets, while keeping our own to ourselves, as always.”
― Sarah Dessen, quote from Just Listen


About the author

Sarah Dessen
Born place: in Illinois, The United States
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