18+ quotes from The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison

Quotes from The Goblin Emperor

Katherine Addison ·  447 pages

Rating: (16.1K votes)


“ 'In our inmost and secret heart, which you ask us to bare to you, we wish to banish them as we were banished, to a cold and lonely house, in the charge of a man who hated us. And we wish them trapped there as we were trapped.'

'You consider that unjust, Serenity?'

'We consider it cruel,' Maia said. 'And we do not think that cruelty is ever just.' ”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“He remembered the moment when his thoughts had inverted themselves—that shift from not being able to please everyone to not trying—and the way that change had enabled him to see past the maneuverings and histrionics of the representatives to the deeper structures of the problem; it was the same with the Corazhas.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Maia screamed and woke.

'Serenity?' Cala's voice, Cala's angular shape outlined against the window.

' 'Tis an ironic title, in sooth,' Maia said feebly, realizing that the entangling garments of the nightmare were merely his bedsheets. His heart was hammering, and he was clammy with sweat.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“ 'We cannot decide,' the Witness for the Treasury said. 'We are sorry, but it is the truth.'

'May we suggest that indecisiveness is hardly a desirable trait in a member of the Corazhas?' Lord Pashavar said.

'We will give our resignation if His Serenity asks it,' the Witness for the Treasury said, looking at Maia.

'You are very decisive in your indecision,' Maia said, which surprised several members of the Corazhas into laughing.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“The reminder that other lives had tragedies without reference to his own was both salutary and painful.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Yes, but one cannot prevent change simply by wishing it not to happen,”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“You are very decisive in your indecision.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“ 'Nothing can make death easier,' Cala said, 'but silence can make it harder.'

'Speaking helps not,' Maia said.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“After a time, he felt a deeper rhythm, the rhythm of the stone and water, not the rhythm of his words and heartbeat. He breathed into this deeper rhythm, let it teach him a new mantra, a wordless mantra that waxed and waned, ebbed and flowed, moon and stars and clouds, river and sun, the wordless singing of the earth beneath it all like the world's own heartbeat. He laid his palms flat on the stone beneath him and listened in quiet rapture to the mantra of the world's praying.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Ulis, he prayed, abandoning the set words, let my anger die with him. Let both of us be freed from the burden of his actions. Even if I cannot forgive him, help me not to hate him. Ulis was a cold god, a god of night and shadows and dust. His love was found in emptiness, his kindness in silence. And that was what Maia needed. Silence, coldness, kindness. He focused his thoughts carefully on the familiar iconography, the image of Ulis’s open hands; the god of letting go was surely the god who would listen to an unwilling emperor. Help me not to feel hatred, he prayed, and after a while it became easier to ask that Dazhis find peace, that Maia’s anger not be added to the weight against his soul.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“They were all very much of a type, tall and narrow-faced, eyes pale blue and pale green and pale gray, their features sharp but oddly empty— young men who has never been lonely or afraid or devastated by grief.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“And she has always gotten very angry at people who won’t play the roles she puts them in.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Serenity, we did not mean to offend you. We thought only to help.”

Maia set his cup down too hard, slopping tea into the saucer, his entire body hot with shame. “We apologize,” he said. “We spoke ungraciously and out of ill temper which we should not have inflicted on you. We should not have disparaged your service, for which we are so truly grateful. We are sorry.”

“Serenity,” Csevet said uncomfortably, “you should not speak so to us.” “

Why not?”

Csevet opened his mouth and closed it again. Then, deliberately, he set down his cup, stood up, and with infinite grace prostrated himself beside the table. Isheian watched him with alarm. Csevet stood up again, unruffled and perfect, and said, “The Emperor of the Elflands does not apologize to his secretary. And yet, we thank you for doing that which the emperor does not.” He smiled, a warm beautiful smile that made his face suddenly, momentarily alive, and sat down again. “Serenity.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“It was the first time in his life Maia had been surrounded by people who were like him instead of only snow-white elves with their pale eyes, and he missed several names in the effort not to faint or hyperventilate or burst into tears.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“She would not be what she is if she had ever had something given her that was a burden equal to her strength.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Nothing can make death easier,” Cala said, “but silence can make it harder.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“until we thought to ask a prisoner why the Nazhmorhathveras call the Anmur’theileian ‘Memory of Death.’ We had thought”—and he used the plural, with a gesture that seemed to encompass generations of knights and foot soldiers fighting and dying far from home—“that they named it that for the uncounted Nazhmorhathvereise dead.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


“Then Cala said, the words blurted, stark and hard, “Serenity, we cannot be your friend.” “Friend? Cala, I—if we have been overfamiliar, we apologize.” “It isn’t that.” Cala did not sound happy, and his ears were flat, but he had carefully turned to look out the window so that Maia could not see his face. “It has been noticed, Serenity, that you treat your nohecharei more as equals than as servants.” “But you are not my servants.” “We are not your equals, Serenity. We have obligations to you which we must fulfill, and in the fulfillment of those obligations must lie the extent of our relationship.”
― Katherine Addison, quote from The Goblin Emperor


About the author

Katherine Addison
Born place: Oak Ridge, Tennessee, The United States
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