“How easy it was to capitalize on a person’s own bent for self-destruction; how simple to nudge them into non-being, then to stand back and shrug and agree that it had been the inevitable result of a chaotic, catastrophic life.”
“When you are young, and beautiful, you can be very cruel.”
“Humans often assumed symmetry and equality where none existed.”
“He had never been able to understand the assumption of intimacy fans felt with those they had never met.”
“A lie would have no sense unless the truth were felt as dangerous.”
“It's that wounded-poet crap, that soul-pain shit, that too-much-of-a-tortured-genius-to-wash bollocks. Brush your teeth, you little bastard. You're not fucking Byron.”
“Strike was used to playing archaeologist among the ruins of people’s traumatised memories;”
“In the inverted food chain of fame, it was the big beasts who were stalked and hunted”
“Seven and a half million hearts were beating in close proximity in this heaving old city, and many, after all, would be aching far worse than his.”
“There’s people who’d expect you to take a bullet for them and they don’t bother rememb’ring yuh name.”
“Ridiculous," he said breathlessly. "You ought to give up detecting and try fantasy writing.”
“Couples tended to be of roughly equivalent personal attractiveness, though of course factors such as money often seemed to secure a partner of significantly better looks than oneself.”
“In spite of her plainness that would have made wallflowers of other women, she radiated a great sense of self-importance.”
“She wuz depressed. Yeah, she wuz on stuff for it. Like me. Sometimes it jus' takes you over. It's an illness," she said, although she made the words sound like "it's uh nillness."
Nillness, thought Strike, for a second distracted. He had slept badly. Nillness, that was where Lula Landry had gone, and where all of them, he and Rochelle included, were headed. Sometimes illness turned slowly to nillness, as was happening to Bristow's mother... sometimes nillness rose to meet you out of nowhere, like a concrete road slamming your skull apart.”
“it was weird. Would you believe it if some supermodel called you up and told you she was your sister?’
Strike thought of his own bizarre family history.
‘Probably,’ he said.”
“But the lies she told were woven into the fabric of her being, her life; so that to live with her and love her was to become slowly enmeshed by them, to wrestle her for the truth, to struggle to maintain foothold on reality.”
“Sense entered into a short, violent skirmish with instinct and inclination, and was overwhelmed.”
“Other people his age had houses and washing machines, cars and television sets, furniture and gardens and mountain bikes and lawnmowers: he had four boxes of crap, and a set of matchless memories.”
“But they had already tried, again and again and again, and always, when the first crashing wave of mutual longing subsided, the ugly wreck of the past lay revealed again, its shadow lying darkly over everything they tried to rebuild.”
“Suicides, in his experience, were perfectly capable of feigning an interest in a future they had no intention of inhabiting.”
“Who was more conscious than the soldier of capricious fortune, of the random roll of the dice?”
“It's an illness," she said, although she made the words sound like "it's uh nillness."
Nillness, thought Strike, for a second distracted. Sometimes illness turned slowly to nillness, as was happening to Bristow's mother... sometimes nillness rose to meet you out of nowhere, like a concrete road slamming your skull apart.”
“You're like everyone else, Strike; you want your civil liberties when you've told the missus you're at the office and you're at a lap-dancing club, but you want twenty-four-hour surveillance on your house when someone's trying to force your bathroom window open. Can't have it both ways.”
“He had hoped to spot the flickering shadow of a murderer as he turned the file's pages, but instead it was the ghost of Lula herself who emerged, gazing up at him, as victims of violent crimes sometimes did, through the detritus of their interrupted lives.”
“For this to happen today, of all days! It felt like a wink from God.”
“Robin was disposed to feel desperately sorry for anyone with a less fortunate love life than her own – if desperate pity could describe the exquisite pleasure she actually felt at the thought of her own comparative paradise.”
“The country was lumbering towards election day. Strike turned in early on Sunday and watched the day's gaffes, counterclaims and promises being tabulated on his portable TV. There was an air of joylessness in every news report he watched. The national debt was so huge that it was diffcult to comprehend. Cuts were coming, whoever won; deep, painful cuts; and sometimes, with their weasel words, the party leaders reminded Strike of the surgeons who had told him cautiously that he might experience a degree of discomfort; they who would never personally feel the pain that was about to be inflicted.”
“Lead me not into temptation. Follow me instead! I know a shortcut! —T-SHIRT”
“She looked up, over the bandage that was nestled under her chin, and saw that the big-belly man with the red beard was starting at her, shaking his head. He looked like he was crying.
"I got ya this time," he whispered, as if to himself. "This time, I got ya.”
“Success is supposed to lead you on to more success. Our whole society is constructed around this principle.”
“Life is not about reward and punishment,” said Xuen. “It is about understanding, accepting who oneself is right now, in order to know what to change, and how.”
“This is not just primitive rural superstition; [juju] is practiced by all kinds of people, from illiterate herd boys to multi-dregreed university professors. If you don't understand the power of this belief, you will never truly grasp the rich albeit often incomprehensible spirituality of Africa.”
BookQuoters is a community of passionate readers who enjoy sharing the most meaningful, memorable and interesting quotes from great books. As the world communicates more and more via texts, memes and sound bytes, short but profound quotes from books have become more relevant and important. For some of us a quote becomes a mantra, a goal or a philosophy by which we live. For all of us, quotes are a great way to remember a book and to carry with us the author’s best ideas.
We thoughtfully gather quotes from our favorite books, both classic and current, and choose the ones that are most thought-provoking. Each quote represents a book that is interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader’s life. We also accept submissions from our visitors and will select the quotes we feel are most appealing to the BookQuoters community.
Founded in 2018, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people who share an affinity for books. Books are seen by some as a throwback to a previous world; conversely, gleaning the main ideas of a book via a quote or a quick summary is typical of the Information Age but is a habit disdained by some diehard readers. We feel that we have the best of both worlds at BookQuoters; we read books cover-to-cover but offer you some of the highlights. We hope you’ll join us.