Ann Brashares · 306 pages
Rating: (28.6K votes)
“Sometimes you couldn’t face the sadness of being forgotten until you felt the comfort of being remembered again.”
“You'll turn out ordinary if you're not careful.”
“Healing wasn’t always the best thing. Sometimes a hole was better left open. Sometimes it healed too thick and too well and left separate pieces fused and incompetent. And it was harder to reopen after that.”
“She wanted him to see all of her and also none of her. She wanted him to be dazzled by the bits and blinded by the whole. She wanted him to see her whole and not in pieces. She had hopes that were hard to satisfy.”
“You surround yourself with your pain or you avoid it and let it find you when you are trying to do other things”
“It was hard to feel the right emotions at the right times. They didn’t come at all when you set a place for them, and they sacked when you weren’t ready, when you were just innocently flossing your teeth, for example, or eating a bowl of cereal. ”
“There was nothing new in sitting on this dock, on this or that wooden bench, watching for his boat to come. In some ways, she was always waiting for him.”
“She was astonished, and at the same time she knew. There were many things in life like that. You couldn’t imagine it, and then it happened and you couldn’t really imagine it hadn’t.”
“She wasn’t sure if he wanted more from her or if he wanted less. Maybe it was both. Maybe it was always both.”
“Honesty was a tough customer... Once you started allowing yourself some honesty, it couldn't easily be contained or limited to one part of your life. It was like poison ivy or a bossy houseguest. Once it was there, you couldn't tell it what to do. You had to really fight to keep it from taking over. ”
“Riley was quiet for a minute. She gathered her blanket all around her. "Paul always loved you, Alice. He knows I know that. I know he loves me, too. But it's different."
Alice opened her mouth, but nothing came out at first. "He loved me once. But I think that part is over," she said slowly.
"No, it's not. It hasn't even begun." Riley took Alice's bare foot in her hand and squeezed it. "I told him, though, that he better be good to you. When you came along, I said I'd share you, but I told him to remember that you're my sister. I loved you first."
“There was love expressed in the places you usually forget to look.”
“But like everything else, love changed.”
“she never showed girly weaknesses like cellulite or crushes. she never lingered on injustices committed against her.”
“I told him, though, that he better be good to you. When you came along, I said I'd share you, but I told him to remember that you're my sister. I loved you first. (Riley to her sister Alice about Paul)”
“I hated motorcycles. I said to my mother, 'I'll never get a motorcycle.' And she said, 'You never know what you'll want when you are older.'
After that, the thing that scared me was not so much the motorcycle itself, but that I could turn into a person who would want one. I was scared of the idea that I could become an entirely different person, a stranger to myself.”
“I told him that he better be good to you. When you came along, I said I'd share you, but I told him to remember that you're my sister. I loved you first.”
“Alice suspected Paul couldn’t really picture his father, just like she couldn’t picture Paul when he was away. Maybe that was the case with people you wanted more than was good for you.”
“There was a moment in between, a moment flung free in the midst of the transition, when he made contact. That was the moment she would dwell on.”
“How is it that a person could be so relieved and so disappointed, both at the same time.”
“Let me love you, but don't love me back. Do love me and lt me hate you for a while. Let me feel like I have some control, because I know I never do.”
“Something about giving in without a fight felt wrong.”
“You could feel things or you could find a way to shut down. But once you were feeling things, you couldn't decide exactly what to feel.”
“Everyone is fragile. Everything beautiful is fragile”
“People left a lot of things behind when they went in the water. Their clothes, their stuff, their makeup, their fixed-up hair, their voices, their hearing, their sight--at least as they normally experienced them....Some people lost their individuality in the water, but Riley always felt most herself. Water was supposed to symbolize renewal, she knew, but when Riley swam, pared down, alone, and unreachable--she felt a deeper sense of who she already was.”
“Exactly! We run or we lose ourselves in something, somebody, anything to try and ease our pain.”
“His distress and pleasure mixed and married, giving birth to several anxious children.”
“She didn't deserve it, which was to say she deserved better.”
“Real fuckin' close. Too fuckin' close. Ta think I almos' put a bullet between them eyes, and took that life that now I'd die ta save, and I never woulda known what he was in the world, and who he was or could be, and I woulda never even known what I was missin', nor known how right it could feel just ta lay my fingers alongside his.”
“This Land is mostly white space on the map...which is how it should be; I'll leave more detailed map making to those graduate students and English teachers who feel that every goose which lays gold must be dissected so that all of its quite ordinary guts can be labelled; to those figurative engineers of the imagination who cannot feel comfortable with the comfortably overgrown (and possible dangerous) literary wilderness until they have built a freeway composed of Cliff's Notes through it - and listen to me, you people: every English teacher who ever did a Monarch or Cliff's Notes ought to be dragged out to his or her quad, drawn and quartered, then cut up into tiny pieces, said pieces to be dried and shrunk in the sun and then sold in the college bookstore as bookmarks.”
“The choices we make in our life don't have to define us. It's what we learn from them that's important.”
“I know what a man feels close to the woman he loves, but he's affraid to do anything”
“Whatever you do to the animals, you do to yourself.”
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