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  • Jenny Shank 7:45 pm on 2018/02/14 Permalink
    Tags: , love sweet love, , quotes we love, ,   

    7 Lines from Classic Literature for Incurable Romantics 

    If you’re looking for the perfect sentiment about love for Valentine’s Day, and greeting cards and conversation hearts just aren’t cutting it, why not turn to classic literature for some insights on romance? Here are seven timeless quotes on love.

    “Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.” –Aristotle, derived from The Symposium, by Plato
     Ever since people have been people, they’ve been thinking about love. Witness this idea, which Aristotle said was sparked by his mentor, Plato, in his work, The Symposium, a fictional dialogue between Socrates and his buddies about love written more than 2300 years ago. This philosophical dinner party banter is credited with inspiring the idea of “soul mates.”

    “If you wish to be loved, love.” Epistulae Morales ad Lucilium, by Seneca the Younger
    In this collection of 124 letters that Seneca the Younger (c. 4 BC–AD 65) wrote late in life, he quotes this sage and simple love advice, which he attributes to stoic philosopher Hecato of Rhodes. Two thousand years later, it still rings true.

    Love is a smoke raised with the fume of sighs/ Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers’ eyes.” –Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare
    However lovelorn a teen might be, there’s no way he’s as lovelorn as Romeo and Juliet. Here’s a line in which Romeo muses about the nature of love while chatting with his cousin Benvolio.

    “The heart has reasons that reason cannot know.” –Pensées, by Blaise Pascal
    Seventeenth-century French philosopher, mathematician, and inventor Blaise Pascal was big on logic and reason, but as one of the most famous lines in his Pensées suggests, he threw logic out the window when it came to love.

    “It is best to love wisely, no doubt; but to love foolishly is better than not to be able to love at all.” –The History of Perdennis, by William Makepeace Thackeray 
    Thackeray was a British novelist during the Victorian era, best known for his novel Vanity Fair, first published as a serial from 1847 to 1848. He followed it up with another serial, The History of Perdennis (18481850), which includes this nugget of wisdom.

    “Love flowers best in openness and freedom.” –Desert Solitaire, by Edward Abbey
    Edward Abbey is best known as a cranky defender of nature, not a writer given to pondering love, but this line from 1968’s Desert Solitaire is as mushy as they come. Abbey’s rep remains intact, though—he was talking about desert plants, not people. The full quote: “The extreme clarity of the desert light is equaled by the extreme individuation of desert life forms. Love flowers best in openness and freedom.”

    “Don’t ever think I fell for you, or fell over you. I didn’t fall in love, I rose in it.” –Jazz, by Toni Morrison
    Toni Morrison shows she knows a thing or two about love—forbidden, brutal, sweet, selfless, and otherwise—in her many fine novels. Forbidden love turns violent in this unforgettable novel set in Harlem in the 1920s.

    The post 7 Lines from Classic Literature for Incurable Romantics appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Ginni Chen 9:00 pm on 2016/05/31 Permalink
    Tags: , , eddie huang, foodie reads, , , quotes we love   

    The 10 Wisest Lines from Author-Chef Eddie Huang’s Double Cup Love 

    There are some books you just have to read twice in a row. The first time, you tear through the pages because you’re eager to find out what comes next. You know you’re missing some scenic moments and some nuggets of wisdom, but you’re having too much fun to pause and you just gotta find out what happens. The second time, you take your time with every word and you unpack every paragraph.  It’s during that second read, when you already know where the narrative is headed, that you have the luxury to digest all the gems of knowledge you missed the first time.

    Double Cup Love is one of those books. It’s the follow-up to Eddie Huang’s first memoir, Fresh Off the Boat, a bestseller that inspired the ABC sitcom of the same name. While Fresh Off the Boat is about where you’re from and where you get your start, Double Cup Love is about how that informs where you’re going, and how to continually define yourself.  It flies by the first time through, an uproariously funny ride that takes you from New York to Orlando to China to Scranton. But there’s a lot of wisdom dropped along the way, shared in Huang’s usual fast-paced witty way, and you won’t want to miss any of it.

    From my second read, here are some favorite Eddie Huang-isms on love, food, and self-discovery:

    1. “The key to being single in New York is recognizing that no one is really inviting you anywhere. No one is that interested in you, they just need a friend right now, and you really shouldn’t catch feelings.”
    2. “Effortless control is maddeningly attractive.”
    3. “When it’s done right, cooking is art in the most accessible, immediate, and satisfying way. Anyone can do it, anyone can appreciate it, and it’s extremely democratic.”
    4. “What does everyone want Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday once they move out of their parents’ home? Mom’s food. That’s what meat and three is: the ten-dollar reenactment of your mother’s table. In this way, cooks are surrogate moms.”
    5. “When all else fails in romance, do people just give up and marry the manifestation of their favorite restaurant?”
    6. “For me, cooking has always been about ideas and techniques, not recipes.”
    7. “No one or no thing can speak for you, you have to speak for yourself.”
    8. “People talk about escape, but I don’t believe in traveling for the purpose of forgetting. I travel to find myself again.”
    9. “I don’t believe in country. I don’t believe in race. But I do believe in the power of place.”
    10. “It isn’t acceptance that extinguishes us, instead, it awakes us. And even if love doesn’t last, acceptance gives us new beginnings.”

    And last but not least, an Eddie Huang quote for the worst of situations: “Life is about intentions. I am man; I intend to step on this Cheez-it!”

    You’re just going to have to read the book to get that one.

    Double Cup Love is on sale now.

  • Ginni Chen 6:30 pm on 2016/04/12 Permalink
    Tags: , , fictional wisdom, , , quotes we love   

    Can You Guess the Fictional Character By Their Yearbook Quote? 

    It’s that time of year, when bright-eyed seniors on the verge of leaving the academic coop put together their yearbook pages. Between the “thank you’s” and the “I love you’s” and the “OMG ROTFL’s,” every cap-and-gown-clad student feels compelled to pass on some words of wisdom that sum up their life view. Some quotes are inspiring, some are less so, but everyone strives for words that give readers a sense of who they truly are.

    As the class of 2016 ponders what quotes they’ll leave as their legacy, we thought it would be fun to imagine what fictional characters would’ve said on their yearbook pages. Test your book cred by guessing which fictional character belongs to each of these perfect yearbook quotes.

    1. This fantastically clever character’s yearbook page says this to his loving friends and family: “I understand what you’re saying, and your comments are valuable, but I’m gonna ignore your advice.”

    2. This character would get a kick out of quoting his girlfriend on his yearbook page, leaving underclassmen the following words of wisdom (attributed to her, of course): “It’s leviOsa, not levioSA!”

    3. This character is unpersuaded by peer pressure to change even when deemed a “nerd,” and would say: “Nothing else has any efficacy, I might as well be myself.”

    4. This character would come back from the strangest senior trip involving the most bizarre encounters, and would sum it up rather philosophically: “It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

    5. This commitment-phobic party girl would have bounced out of school the day after graduation for the Big City, leaving behind this quote: “I don’t want to own anything until I know I’ve found the place where me and things belong together.”

    6. This character would start to unravel toward the end of school and nobody would seem to notice. He’d leave behind this cryptic yearbook quote: “I have to return some videotapes.”

    7. This manifesto-writing, riot-inducing, hot-dog loving character would toss one last insult at his classmates in his yearbook quote: “I mingle with my peers or no one, and since I have no peers, I mingle with no one.”

    8. This mischievous character soars above the rest of the class and seeks adventure wherever he goes. Before he takes off, he’d say to his schoolmates, “To live would be an awfully big adventure.”

    9. This character is a little less hopeful about the future than his peers. He’s little sad for the past, a little bit in love, and a little worried about what’s ahead. His parting words would be “Develop a sense of nostalgia for something, or you’ll never figure out what’s important.”

    10. This character is the rich eccentric kid in class, but truly means well and has a heart of gold. Before leaving on a strange philanthropic adventure, this character’s yearbook quote would say, “Many, many good things have I bought! Many, many bad things have I fought!”

    11. This mistake-prone yet lovable character would graduate from school at the top of the class, and would share the following optimistic outlook: “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?”

    12. This character would ask classmates to think of the world and their responsibility to future generations. This character would want a yearbook quote that inspires awareness and change, something like: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

    13. This character isn’t a big fan of school, but isn’t happy about graduating either, because it means entering the grownup world. Their yearbook quote would speak the truth about getting older, “Grown-ups never have any fun. All they have is a lot of dull work and stupid clothes and corns and nincom tax.”


    1. Mr. Fox, from Fantastic Mr. Fox, by Roald Dahl
    2. Ron Weasley, from The Harry Potter Series, by J.K. Rowling
    3. Oscar De Leon, from The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Diaz
    4. Alice from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll
    5. Holly Golightly, from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, by Truman Capote
    6. Patrick Bateman, from American Psycho, by Bret Easton Ellis
    7. Ignatius Reilly, from A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole
    8. Peter Pan, from Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
    9. Lenny Abramov, from Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart
    10. Eliot Rosewater, from God Bless You Mr. Rosewater by Kurt Vonnegut
    11. Anne Shirley, from Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
    12. The Once-ler, from The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
    13. Pippi Longstocking, from Pippi in the South Seas, by Astrid Lindgren

    How many did you get right?

  • Lauren Passell 7:00 pm on 2014/09/12 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , quotes we love,   

    15 Lines from Caitlin Moran’s How to Build a Girl That Will Make You Want to Read It Yesterday 


    I just finished reading/underlining Caitlin Moran’s first foray into the YA world, How to Build a Girl. I underlined so much, in fact, that it would have been easier on my wrists to just underline the parts I didn’t like. Set in 1990, the book follows Johanna Morrigan, self-described “freaky fat teenager,” who has decided to reinvent herself by stripping away all that she is and creating a new person, a person she calls Dolly Wilde, the person she believes she was meant to be. In her attempt to become her own polar opposite (which includes having sex, drinking and smoking, rocking eyeliner, listening to rock, and becoming a music reviewer), she find that building a girl from the ground up is hard, and she grows up into—well, maybe not the person she thought she was supposed to be. But the person she was actually supposed to be, yes. I had high expectations for this thing, and my high expectations were exceeded. How to Build a Girl is a raunchy, hilarious ride. You’re welcome for bringing you these 15 amazing quotations from its pages. And the rest of the book is so enjoyable, you’re going to want to buy a copy of your own so you can underline and dog-ear pages and make little tears mid-page and fold a small arrow to your favorite parts (when you don’t have a pen) in your own copy. Then you’ll have to come back and tell me what your favorite lines were. Here are mine:

    “I am angry I haven’t been kissed. I think I would be really good at it. When I start kissing, the world is going to know about it. my kissing is going to change everything. I’m going to be the Beatles of kissing.” –p.21

    “Wolverhampton, in 1990, looks like something bad happened to it. ‘Something bad did happen to it,’ Dad explains as we go down Cleveland Street. ‘Thatcher.’ My father has a very personal and visceral loathing of Margaret Thatcher. Growing up, my understanding is that, at some point in the past, she bested my father in a fight that he only just escaped from—and that next time they meet it will be a fight to the death. A bit like Gandalf and the Balrog.” –p.21

    “Today, like every other day, I’m going to go to bed still a fat virgin who writes her diary in a series of imaginary letters to sexy Gilbert Blythe from Anne of Green Gables.” –p.27

    “I want everyone—men, women, Minotaurs; I read a lot of Greek mythology, and I’m out for whatever I can get—to want to have absolute, total sex with me, right in my sex places, in the most sexual way possible. Sexually. This is my most urgent mission. My hormones are rioting like a zoo on fire. There’s a mandrill with its head ablaze unlocking other animal’s cages and screaming, “OH MY GOD—FREAK OUT!” I’m in the middle of a sexmergency.” –p.28

    “When Bill Murray says $*@! like this, people completely lose it. I wish I was Bill Murray. I hope everything I’ve read about evolution is wrong, and I eventually evolve into him. It’s one of only three plans I have.” –p.48

    “I am a very pale, round-faced girl with a monobrow, and eyes that are too small, and lank hair the color of dead mice, and I am not beautiful at all. And I am fat—a solid, pale fatness that makes me look like a cheap white fridge-freezer that someone’s wheeled onto the stage and then painted a worried-looking child’s face on it, due to a terrible unkindness.” –p.53

    “‘We’re like Shaggy and Scooby-Doo,’ I continue. ‘Best friends forever.’ To clarify this point, I do what, as I know now,  you should never do if you’re a freaky fat teenage girl on a live TV show, in the grips of your first ever wave of utter existential self-loathing, and being watched, ultracritically, by everyone in your hometown. Without explaining why, I break into a very impassioned impression of Scooby-Doo. ‘Ri ruv my rog!’ I say again. ‘Revveryrody ruvs my rog!’ I take a breath. I can feel what I’m going to do next. ‘Scooby Dooby Doooooo!’ I conclude,  howling. I am giving this impression everything. ’Scoooooby Dooooby Dooooooo!’” –p. 55

    “On the wall above my bed, I start Blue-Tacking up things I think will be useful in this task—a list of attributes I would wish to gift myself, now that I’m starting again. It will be like those scenes in detective shows where they pin up all the clues on the wall and then stare at it while music wells, until—suddenly! They know who the murderer is, and grab their coat, and run out of the room. I am going to put every clue I have about how to be a better me on this well, and I will stare at it whilst listening to The Best of the Hollies, until—suddenly! I will know who I am, grab my coat, and run out of the room to have sex.” —p.65

    “All my life, I’ve thought that if I couldn’t say anything boys found interesting, I might as well shut up. But now I realize there was that whole other, invisible half of the world—girls—that I could speak to instead. A whole other half equally silent and frustrated, just waiting to be given the smallest starting signal—the tiniest starter culture—and they would explode into words, and song, and action, and relieved, euphoric cries of ‘Me too, I feel this too!’ The news has hit Britain: they’re making new kinds of girls in America. Girls who don’t give a $*@!. Girls who dare. Girls who do it because other girls do it. Girls who would like a girl like you.” –p.98

    “‘You got Lupin to make a you a sandwich?’ she asks, looking extremely riled. ‘To be fair, I’ve made him millions, over the years,’ I say. ‘I thought he’d enjoy learning a new skill. And I’m on deadline! I’m starving!’ ‘He’s just taken half his thumb off on the cheese grater,’ she says. I cock my head. That wailing sound from the kitchen does—yes—sound exactly like an eight-year-old boy who’s grated his thumb off. That’s exactly the pitch.” –p. 113

    “The thing is, when you start smoking, you think you’ve bought a fun baby dragon. You think you’ve charmed a fabulous beast, as your toy, that will impress all that see it. And then, twenty years later, you wake up with your lungs full of cinder and shite, and the bed on fire, and you realize the dragon grew up—and burned your &*$%ing house down.” –p.133

    “As I’ve not been kissed before, I’m not really sure how you activate this function on a man. I think of all the kissing I’ve seen. I know that saying, ‘You may now kiss the bride!’ has a 100 percent success rate—but that seems inappropriate here. Leia got Han to kiss her before they swung across a chasm in a spaceship on a rope together—but that’s going to take a lot more infrastructure that I have available.” –p.195

    “It is a million times easier to be cynical and wield a sword, than it is to be open-hearted and stand there, holding a balloon and a birthday cake, with the infinite potential to look foolish… When cynicism becomes the default language, playfulness and invention become impossible. Cynicism scours through a culture like bleach, wiping out millions of small, seedling ideas… Cynicism means you presume everything will end in disappointment. And this, ultimately, is why anyone becomes cynical. Because they are fearful their innocence will be used against them—that when they run around gleefully trying to cram the whole world in their mouth, someone will try to poison them. Cynicism is, ultimately, fear. Cynicism makes contact with your skin, and a thick black carapace begins to grow—like insect armor. This armor will protect your heart from disappointment—but it leaves you unable to walk. You cannot dance in this armor. Cynicism keeps you pinned to the spot, in the same posture, forever.” –p.245

    “And so you go out into your world, and try and find the things that will be useful to you. Your weapons. Your tools. Your charms. You find a record, or a poem, or a picture of a girl that you pin to the wall and go, ‘Her. I’ll try and be her. I’ll try and be her—but here.’ You observe the way others walk, and talk, and you steal little bits of them—you collage yourself out of whatever you can get your hands on. You are like the robot Johnny 5 in Short Circuit, crying, ‘More input! More input for Johnny 5!’ as you rifle through books and watch films and sit in front of the television, trying to guess which of these things that you are watching—Alex Carrington Colby walking down a marble staircase; Anne of Green Gables holding her shoddy suitcase; Cathy wailing on the moors; Courtney Love wailing in her petticoat; Dorothy Parker gunning people down; Grace Jones singing ‘Slave to the Rhythm’—you will need when you get out there. What will be useful. What will be, eventually, you.” –p.297

    “I’ve eaten drugs off a hanky, had sex with a medically inadvisable penis, confused the Smashing Pumpkins, blew off a threesome with a quote from Blade Runner, and tried to kiss my hero whilst being serenaded by singing gibbons. And, like all the best quests, in the end, I did it all for a girl: me.” –p. 316

    Are you excited to read Moran’s first YA book?

  • BN Editors 4:30 pm on 2014/06/25 Permalink
    Tags: , , a lesson before dying, , a thousand splended suns, animal dreams, , , , , , , , harry potter and the deathly hallows, , , , , , , , , , one hundred years of solitude, , , , quotes we love, sandman slim, , still life with woodpecker, , , the fellowship of the ring, , the glass menagerie, the mysteries of pittsburgh, , the things they carried, the watsons go to birmingham 1963, ,   

    43 Great Quotes From Literature We Forgot to Mention 

    TKAMLast week we collected 10 of our favorite lines in literature, but it appears we have forgotten some. Embarrassing! To those of you who weighed in on your own favorites in the comments: thank you. They were fun to read. And here they are!

    “My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.” —The Princess Bride (Sharon F.)

    “It is a truth universally that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” —Pride and Prejudice (Shelley H.)

    “Have a biscuit, Potter.” —Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Megan B.)

    “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” —A Tale of Two Cities (Mary Ellen R.)

    “My dear, I don’t give a damn.” —Gone With the Wind (Michelle C.)

    “Most men and women will grow up to love their servitude and will never dream of revolution.” —Brave New World (Amber D.)

    “By the time we arrived, as evening was approaching, I felt as sore as a rock must feel when the waterfall has pounded on it all day long.” —Memoirs of a Geisha (Sunny H.)

    “Neighbours bring food with death and flowers with sickness and little things in between. Boo was our neighbour. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good luck pennies, and our lives.” —To Kill a Mockingbird (Shirisha T.)

    “The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.” —The Gunslinger (Rob B.)

    “Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit em, but remember that it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” —To Kill a Mockingbird (Kristy E.)

    “And so we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.” —The Great Gatsby (Caitlyn S.)

    “I think of my life as a kind of music, not always good music but still having form and melody.”—East of Eden (Jessica H.)

    “Stay gold, Ponyboy, stay gold.” —The Outsiders (Laura M.)

    “And in that moment, like a swift intake of breath, the rain came.” —Other Voices, Other Rooms (Madalaine B.)

    “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents!” —Little Women (Peggy C.)

    “When the day shall come that we do part,” he said softly, and turned to look at me, “if my last words are not ‘I love you’—you’ll ken it was because I didn’t have time.” —The Fiery Cross (Sharon T.)

    “Hey, boo.” —To Kill a Mockingbird (Theresa M.)

    “I believe there are monsters born in the world to human parents.” –East of Eden (JA R.)

    “I meant what I said and I said what I meant. An elephant’s faithful one-hundred percent!” —Horton Hatches the Egg (Carlie B.)

    “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” —The Fellowship of the Ring (Mel F.)

    “Tomorrow I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.” —Gone with the Wind (Carla M.)

    “If this typewriter can’t do it, then f@#$ it, it can’t be done. —Still Life with Woodpecker (Dan E.)

    “Sometimes you have to keep on steppin’.”—The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 (Mary D.)

    “There are few people whom I really love and still fewer of whom I think well.” —Pride and Prejudice (Pauline S.)

    “Stories are for eternity, when memory is erased, when there is nothing to remember except the story.” The Things They Carried (Kristy C.)

    “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” –Anna Karenina (JA R.)

    “Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt.” —Slaughterhouse-Five (Heather R.)

    “Marley was dead as a doornail.” —A Christmas Carol (Colleen D.)

    “Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aurelio Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon that his father took him to discover ice.” —One Hundred Years of Solitude (Janice S.)

    “What fresh hell is this?” —Jane Eyre (Katie D.)

    “Heart like shale. What you need is a good fracking.” —MaddAddam (Anna L.)

    “Always.” —Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Aimee U.)

    “Everything’s profound when there’s guns and zombies.” —Sandman Slim (Caroline R.)

    “To the person in the bell jar, blank and stopped as a dead baby, the world itself is the bad dream.” —The Bell Jar (Veronica F.)

    “For one last time, Miriam does as she is told.” —A Thousand Splendid Suns (Barbara W.)

    “And that’s all we are Jefferson, all of us on this earth, a piece of drifting wood. Until we—each of us, individually—decide to become something else. I am still that piece of drifting wood, and those out there are no better. But you can be better.” —A Lesson Before Dying (Emily K.)

    “As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.” —The Fault in Our Stars (Jen P.)

    “‘Nobody run off with her,’ Roscoe said. ‘She just run off with herself, I guess.’” —Lonesome Dove (Cindy A.)

    “At the beginning of the summer I had lunch with my father, the gangster, who was in town for the weekend to transact some of his vague business.” —The Mysteries of Pittsburgh (Arthur M.)

    “What keeps you going isn’t some fine destination but just the road you’re on, and the fact that you know how to drive.” —Animal Dreams (Liz M.)

    “He was dancing, dancing. He says he’ll never die.” —Blood Meridian (Reed M.)

    “We’re all damaged, somehow.” —A Great and Terrible Beauty (Caitlin P.)

    “He’s more myself than I am.” —Wuthering Heights (Cortina W.)

    “Life is pain, highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.” —The Princess Bride, Betty D.

    “You know it don’t take much intelligence to get yourself into a nailed-up coffin, Laura. But who in hell ever got himself out of one without removing one nail?” —The Glass Menagerie (chelseyam)

    What great literary quotations did we STILL forget?

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