“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”
“Ever morning, until you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision. You gone have to ask yourself, "Am I gone believe what them fools say about me today?”
“I always thought insanity would be a dark, bitter feeling, but it is drenching and delicious if you really roll around in it.”
“All I'm saying is, kindness don't have no boundaries.”
“Wasn't that the point of the book? For women to realize, We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I'd thought.”
“Write about what disturbs you, particularly if it bothers no one else.”
“Once upon a time they was two girls," I say. "one girl had black skin, one girl had white."
Mae Mobley look up at me. She listening.
"Little colored girl say to little white girl, 'How come your skin be so pale?' White girl say, 'I don't know. How come your skin be so black? What you think that mean?'
"But neither one a them little girls knew. So little white girl say, 'Well, let's see. You got hair, I got hair.'"I gives Mae Mobley a little tousle on her head.
"Little colored girl say 'I got a nose, you got a nose.'"I gives her little snout a tweak. She got to reach up and do the same to me.
"Little white girl say, 'I got toes, you got toes.' And I do the little thing with her toes, but she can't get to mine cause I got my white work shoes on.
"'So we's the same. Just a different color', say that little colored girl. The little white girl she agreed and they was friends. The End."
Baby Girl just look at me. Law, that was a sorry story if I ever heard one. Wasn't even no plot to it. But Mae Mobley, she smile and say, "Tell it again.”
“Stuart needs "space" and "time," as if this were physics and not a human relationship.”
“Ugly live up on the inside. Ugly be a hurtful, mean person.”
“I always order the banned books from a black market dealer in California, figuring if the State of Mississippi banned them, they must be good.”
“That's what I love about Aibileen, she can take the most complicated things in life and wrap them up so small and simple, they'll fit right in your pocket.”
“I'm sorry, but were you dropped on your head as an infant?”
“All my life I'd been told what to believe about politics, coloreds, being a girl. But with Constantine's thumb pressed in my hand, I realized I actually had a choice in what I could believe.”
“That's the way prayer do. It's like electricity, it keeps things going.”
“Sorry is the fool who ever underestimates my mother.”
“I'd cry, if only I had the time to do it.”
“The first time I was ever called ugly, I was thirteen. It was a rich friend of my brother Carlton's over to shoot guns in the field.
'Why you crying, girl?' Constantine asked me in the kitchen.
I told her what the boy had called me, tears streaming down my face.
'Well? Is you?'
I blinked, paused my crying. 'Is I what?'
'Now you look a here, Egenia'-because constantien was the only one who'd occasionally follow Mama's rule. 'Ugly live up on the inside. Ugly be a hurtful, mean person. Is you one a them peoples?'
'I don't know. I don't think so,' I sobbed.
Constantine sat down next to me, at the kitchen table. I heard the cracking of her swollen joints. She pressed her thumb hard in the palm of my hand, somthing we both knew meant Listen. Listen to me.
'Ever morning, until you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision.' Constantine was so close, I could see the blackness of her gums. 'You gone have to ask yourself, Am I gone believe what them fools say about me today?'
She kept her thumb pressed hard in my hand. I nodded that I understood. I was just smart enough to realize she meant white people. And even though I still felt miserable, and knew that I was, most likely, ugly, it was the first time she ever talked to me like I was something besides my mother's white child. All my life I'd been told what to believe about politics, coloreds, being a girl. But with Constantine's thumb pressed in my hand, I realized I actually had a choice in what I could believe.”
“It weren’t too loo long before I seen something in me, had changed. A bitter seed was planted inside of me. And I just didn’t feel so, accepting, anymore.”
“...and that's when I get to wondering, what would happen if I told her she something good, ever day?”
It feels cool, like water washing over my sticky-hot body. Cooling a heat that's been burning me up all my life.
Truth, I say inside my head again, just for that feeling.”
“That was the day my whole world went black. Air looked black. Sun looked black. I laid up in bed and stared at the black walls of my house….Took three months before I even looked out the window, see the world still there. I was surprised to see the world didn’t stop.”
“it always sound scarier when a hollerer talk soft.”
“Frying chicken always makes me feel a little better about life.”
“No one tells us, girls who don't go on dates, that remembering can be almost as good as what actually happens.”
“It seems like at some point you'd run out of awful.”
“She's wearing a tight red sweater and a red skirt and enough makeup to scare a hooker.”
“We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I'd thought.”
“I listened wide-eyed, stupid. Glowing by her voice in the dim light. If chocolate was a sound, it would've been Constantine's voice singing. If singing was a color, it would've been the color of that chocolate.”
“Mississippi is like my mother. I am allowed to complain about her all I want, but God help the person who raises an ill word about her around me, unless she is their mother too.”
“...out of the blue, he kissed me. Right in the middle of the Robert E. Lee Hotel Restaurant, he kissed me so slowly with an open mouth and every single thing in my body-my skin, my collarbone, the hollow backs of my knees, everything inside of me filled up with light.”
“All around, everywhere you look, is dullness and uncertainty. Even something born of beauty soon leads to boredom and banality, commonplace, the human ritual, the tedious rhythm of life.”
“I'm with you. No matter what else you have in your head I'm with you and I love you.”
“A good angel is only a dead angel.”
“So. Tell me, little wolf. Do you want to punish those who have wronged you?”
“People are so rarely villains in their own minds.”
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.