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A Little Life Quotes

20 of the best book quotes from A Little Life
  1. #1
    “…to solve someone is to want to repair them: to diagnose a problem and then not try to fix that problem seemed not only neglectful but immoral.”
  2. #2
    “His relationship also felt sacred because he had just recently…felt he had gotten the rhythm of it. The person he thought he knew had turned out to be, in some ways, not the person before him, and it had taken him time to figure out how many facets he had yet to see: it was as if the shape he had all along thought was a pentagram was in reality a dodecahedron, many sided and many fractaled and much more complicated to measure.”
  3. #3
    ″(His) vision, his version of himself was singular to the point of being delusional.”
  4. #4
    “Wasn’t this what he had wanted…from this relationship? To be so indispensable to another person that that person couldn’t even comprehend his life without him? And now he had it, and the demands of the position terrified him. He had asked for responsibility without understanding completely how much damage he could do. Was he able to do this?”
  5. #5
    “If you love home—and even if you don’t—there is nothing quite as cozy, as comfortable, as delightful, as that first week back. That week, even the things that would irritate you—the alarm waahing from some car at three in the morning; the pigeons who come to clutter and cluck on the windowsill behind your bed when you’re trying to sleep in—seem instead reminders of your own permanence, of how life, your life, will always graciously allow you to step back inside of it, no matter how far you have gone away from it or how long you have left it.”
  6. #6
    “The word no, so short, so easy to say, a child’s sound, a noise more than a word, a short exhalation of air: all he had to do was part his lips, and the word would come out, and—and what?”
  1. #7
    “Ever since their relationship has changed from what it had been into what it now is, their conversations have become both more intimate and more mundane…the daily mapmaking that keeps their life together inching along.”
  2. #8
    “He saw how hard Jude tried…he saw how determined he was, he saw how brave he was being. And this reminded him that he, too, had to keep trying. Both of them were uncertain; both of them were trying as much as they could; both of them would doubt themselves, would progress and recede. But they would both keep trying, because they trusted the other, and because the other person was the only other person who would ever be worth such hardships, such difficulties, such insecurities and exposure.”
  3. #9
    “He knew this was childish, but all stubborn acts are childish acts. Here, stubbornness was his only weapon. Patience; stubbornness; love: he had to believe these would be enough.”
  4. #10
    “In those hours he is awake and prowling through the building, he sometimes feels he is a demon who has disguised himself as a human, and only at night is it safe to shed the costume he must wear by daylight, and indulge his true nature.”
  5. #11
    “…always he was alert for information, for lessons on how to be.”
  6. #12
    “I have still never met anyone as neatly or severely bifurcated as he: someone who could be so utterly confident in some realms and so utterly despondent in others.”

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  1. #13
    ″(Their relationship) existed to no one but themselves: it seemed something sacred, and fought-for, and unique to them…in it, he played a role for one other person, and that person was his only audience, and no one else ever saw it, no matter how much they thought they might.”
  2. #14
    “What comforted him was…that Jude seemed so confident, so competent, so certain that he, too, had something to offer. It reminded Willem that their relationship wasn’t a rescue mission after all, but an extension of their friendship, in which he had saved Jude and, just as often, Jude had saved him.”
  3. #15
    “…the best actors are the most boring people. A strong sense of self was detrimental, because an actor had to let the self disappear; he had to let himself be subsumed by a character. ‘If you want to be a personality, be a pop star.‘”
  4. #16
    ″‘Are you sure, Willem?’ Jude had asked him, looking worried, and he knew that Jude was really asking if he was sure about the relationship itself: he was always holding the door open for him, letting him know he could leave.”
  5. #17
    ″(His) vision, his version of himself was singular to the point of being delusional.”
  6. #18
    “He knew, of course, that he would work again: he had to believe it. Every actor did. Acting was a form of grifting, and once you stopped believing you could, so did everyone else.”
  7. #19
    “Tears came to his eyes, then, for how lopsided he had let their friendship become, and for how long Willem had stayed with him, year after year, even when he had fled from him, even when he had asked him for help with problems whose origins he wouldn’t reveal. In his new life, he promised himself, he would be less demanding of his friends; he would be more generous. Whatever they wanted, he would give them. If Willem wanted information, he could have it, and it was up to him to figure out how to give it to him. He would be hurt again and again—everyone was—but if he was going to try, if he was going to be alive, he had to be tougher, he had to prepare himself, he had to accept that this was part of the bargain of life itself.”
  8. #20
    “Always, he wonders why and how he has let four months—months increasingly distant from him—so affect him, so alter his life. But then, he might as well ask—as he often does—why he has let the first fifteen years of his life so dictate the past twenty-eight. He has been lucky beyond measure; he has an adulthood that people dream about: Why, then, does he insist on revisiting and replaying events that happened so long ago? Why can he not simply take pleasure in his present? Why must he so honor his past? Why does it become more vivid, not less, the further he moves from it?”
Book Topics › vision
Children's Books About Vision