Above the Meadows, In Dreams

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"Happily ever after, or even just together ever after, is not cheesy […]. It’s the noblest, like, the most courageous thing two people can shoot for."

- Rainbow Rowell, Fangirl

"But requiring a person to disappear, to fade into the background wherever they go, is no better than encouraging them to punch one another."

- Veronica Roth, Allegiant

"Does character develop over time? In novels, of course, it does: otherwise there wouldn’t be much of a story. But in life? I sometimes wonder. Our attitudes and opinions change, we develop new habits and eccentricities; but that’s something different, more like decoration. Perhaps character resembles intelligence, except that character peaks a little later: between twenty and thirty, say. And after that, we’re just stuck with what we’ve got. We’re on our own."

- Julian Barnes, The Sense of an Ending

"[B]eauty is a world betrayed."

- Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

"I like to see people reunited, maybe that’s a silly thing, but what can I say, I like to see people run to each other, I like the kissing and the crying, I like the impatience, the stories that the mouth can’t tell fast enough, the ears that aren’t big enough, the eyes that can’t take in all of the change, like the hugging, the bringing together, the end of missing someone…"

- Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

"Poverty is like everything else. In the end it becomes bearable. One continues to exist in a wretched sort of way that is just sufficient to sustain life."

- Victor Hugo, Les Miserables

"Communication, the universal need. Information. Access. Escape from the prison of silence."

- T.C. Boyle, Talk Talk

"Conceit in weakest bodies strongest works."

- William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of Hamlet

"To really be a nerd […] you had to prefer fictional worlds to the real one."

- Rainbow Rowell, Fangirl

"I belong to the people I love, and they belong to me – they, and the love and loyalty I give them, form my identity far more than any word or group ever could."

- Veronica Roth, Allegiant

"But time… how time first grounds us and then confounds us. We thought we were being mature when we were only being safe. We imagined we were being responsible but we were only being cowardly. What we called realism turned out to be a way of avoiding things rather than facing them. Time… give us enough time and our best-supported decisions will seem wobbly, our certainties whimsical."

- Julian Barnes, The Sense of an Ending

"It’s the tragedy of loving, you can’t love anything more than something you miss."

- Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

"A certain light was beginning to dawn dimly within her, - the light which, showing the way, forbids it. At that early period it served but to bewilder her. It moved her to dreams, to thoughtfulness, to the shadowy anguish which had overcome her the midnight when she had abandoned herself to tears. In short, [she] was beginning to realize that her position in the universe as a human being, and to recognize her relations as an individual to the world within and about her."

- Kate Chopin, The Awakening

"Philanthropy is almost the only virtue which is sufficiently appreciated by mankind. Nay, it is greatly overrated; and it is our selfishness which overrates it."

- Henry David Thoreau, Walden

"Relations are simply a tedious pack of people, who haven’t got the remotest knowledge of how to live, nor the smallest instinct about when to die."

- Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Ernest