Celeste Ng Quotes

42 of the best book quotes from Celeste Ng
“Most of the time, everyone deserves more than one chance. We all do things we regret now and then. You just have to carry them with you.”
“In her month and a half of turbulent motherhood, Bebe did not once seek help from a psychologist or a doctor... she had no idea where to turn... She did not know how to find the social workers who might have helped her... she did not know how to file for welfare.”
“In Shaker Heights there was a plan for everything.”
“It bothers you, doesn’t it?” Mia said suddenly. “I think you can’t imagine. Why anyone would choose a different life from the one you’ve got. Why anyone might want something other than a big house with a big lawn, a fancy car, a job in an office. Why anyone would choose anything different than what you’d choose.”
“What made someone a mother? Was it biology alone, or was it love?”
“Later people would say that the signs had been there all along: that Izzy was a little lunatic, that there had always been something off about the Richardson family, that as soon as they heard the sirens that morning they knew something terrible had happened.”
“A part of her wanted to study Mia understand why...she did what she did.”
“You know what they’d say? We raised you better than that. ”
“She had learned that when people were bent on doing something they believed was a good deed, it was usually impossible to dissuade them.”
“...the thing about portraits is, you need to show people the way they want to be seen. And I prefer to show people as I see them.”
“Mia could not help but notice her daughter’s infatuation with the Richardsons.”
“She had learned that passion, like fire, was a dangerous thing.”
“People are like that, too, you know. They start over.”
“One had followed the rules, and one had not. But the problem with rules... was that they implied a right way and a wrong way to do things. When, in fact, most of the time they were simply ways, none of them quite wrong or quite right, and nothing to tell you for sure what side of the line you stood on.”
“To a parent, your child wasn’t just a person: your child was a place, a kind of Narnia, a vast eternal place where the present you were living and the past you remembered and the future you longed for all at the same time.”
“It was more appropriate to give her a new name to celebrate the start of her new life.”
“Inside her, there was a speck of Brian, a spark of him turning over and over within her... something she was going to have anyway, so why not now?”
“It’s you. The indentured servant. I mean, the tenant-slash-cleaning lady.”
“Sometimes you need to scorch everything to the ground, and start over. After the burning the soil is richer, and new things can grow.”
“The firemen said there were little fires everywhere,” Lexie said. “Multiple points of origin. Possible use of accelerant. Not an accident.”
“In all her years of itinerant living, Mia had developed one rule: Don’t get attached to any place, to any apartment, to anything. To anyone.”
“Maybe at birth everyone should be given to a family of a different race to be raised. Maybe that would solve racism once and for all.”
″‘Your mother’s home,’ he said, as if they couldn’t see her standing there in the doorway behind him.”
“For as long as she’s been alive, the family has never spoken of it, and even if they had, it would have changed nothing.”
“This little man, five-foot-nine at most and not even American, was going to teach them about cowboys?”
“You’re the kind of girl I should have married. ”
″‘Don’t you talk to me that way,’ he says. ‘Don’t you question me. You don’t know anything about my life’.”
“What else have you been hiding?’’
″ That most important word: tomorrow. ”
“Dreaming of his future, he no longer heard all the things she did not say. ”
“You don’t want that ... You think you do.”
“After a few stuttering replies, the spotlight would swivel back to Lydia, and Nath would retreat to his room and his aeronautics magazines.”
″ The confident young man in his imagination dwindled to a nervous little boy. ”
“That long-ago day, sitting in this very spot on the dock, she had already begun to feel it: how hard it would be to inherit their parents’ dreams. How suffocating to be so loved. She had felt Nath’s hands on her shoulders and been almost grateful to fall forward, to let herself sink… Don’t let me sink, she had thought as she reached for his hand, and he had promised not to when he took it. This moment, Lydia thought. This is where it all went wrong.”
“Sweetheart, I know high school might not feel important, but it’s the foundation for the rest of your life.”
“Coming to her made him feel perfectly welcomed, perfectly at home, as he had never in his life felt before.”
“When Nath had been born, then Lydia, Marilyn had not informed her mother, had not even sent a photograph. What was there to say? She and James had never discussed what her mother had said about their marriage that last day: it’s not right. She had not ever wanted to think of it again. So when James came home that night, she said simply, “My mother died.” Then she turned back to the stove and added, “And the lawn needs mowing,” and he understood: they would not talk about it.”
“Of course it was possible for her: she had no husband. ”
″ Lydia’s quietness, her lack of friends. Her recent sinking grades. And, in truth, the strangeness of her family. A family with no friends, a family of misfits.”
“What made something precious? Losing it and finding it.”
″ ‘I am disappointed.” Marilyn’s head snaps up. ‘l thought you were different.’ What she means is: I thought you were better than other men. I thought you wanted better than that. ”
“It’s not right, Marilyn. It’s not right. ”

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J.R.R. TolkienDr. SeussLewis CarrollLemony SnicketMark TwainRoald DahlRalph Waldo EmersonJane AustenBrené BrownEmily DickensonMichelle ObamaRobert FrostRachel HollisMargaret AtwoodShel Silversteinresponsibilitytaking responsibilitysecond chancesregretsMia Warrenignorancedepressionmotherhoodwelfarelack of knowledgeBebeplanningfollow the crowdneighborhoodsmeticulousorderlyexpectationsthinking differentlystanding outlovemothersbiologyLinda McCulloughsElena Richardsonburningoutcastgoing crazyIzzy Richardsoncuriosityartistsinterestedinvestigationabortionpregnancyto be raisedLexie RichardsonBriandiscouragementbeliefsconvictionpersuasivenessperspectivepoint of viewbeing an exampleinfatuationlooking up to othersPearl Warrenpassiondangerliving dangerouslystarting overa fresh startnew liferight and wrongrules of societybreaking the rulesparentingfuturethe pastthe presentchildchildhood namereal nameadoptionteenagersunderestimateservitudedespise being poorgrowthrebuildingrebirthfirecrimeisolationdetacheddisconnectednomadsprejudicesracismraceethnicitydiversityloyaltyreturning homefeeling stuckMarilyn LeeJames LeeinvisibleNarratorfamily's secretsunnoticedHannah Leestereotypesculturesymbolismbelongingchildhoodfamily trialsLouisa ChenmoralssecretsauthorityNath Leehidingdisappeartrue feelingsLydia Leefamilytomorrowabandonmentstaying putsiblingsdaydreamsattentionfamily relationshipslosing everythingspecialneglectrealityimaginationsufferingmisunderstandingswrongbeing lovedhigh expectationfoundationsimportancehigh schoolhomeacceptanceunderstandingfacing deathnegative feelingsgoalscareersdistractionsgender relationsdomesticationdeathstrangenesssignspreciousfinding happinessbeing differentdisappointmenthope for a better futuremarriagedifferences
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