13 Nuggets of Wisdom from Novels

fairoaks-alchemist-cindyfazzipicI read novels for pleasure. I consider it a bonus when a book also enlightens or offers advice. Indeed literature can empower readers to take positive actions, according to a recent study. 

“Reading acts as a window to the outside world that challenges our thinking and changes our lifestyles for the better,” according to the study titled “The Untold Power of the Book.” I rounded up 13 of my favorite pithy quotes from literature, with topics ranging from books and love to regret and death.

Do you have any favorite literary quotes? Share them and leave a comment below.


“Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen

“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book!”


“Being Dead” by Jim Crace

“Everything was born to go. The universe has learned to cope with death.”


“The Bluest Eye” by Toni Morrison

“Joy is as short and straight as the blade of a pocket knife.”

“We are Pirates” by Daniel Handler

We steal the happiness of others in order to be happy ourselves.


“City on Fire” by Garth Risk Hallberg

“How much simpler the world would be if people could admit openly to hating each other.”


“The Circle” by Dave Eggers

“We are not meant to know everything…Did you ever think that perhaps our minds are delicately calibrated between the known and the unknown? That our souls need the mysteries of night and the clarity of day?”

Loss and Regret

“Cold Mountain” by Charles Frazier

“What you have lost will not be returned to you. It will always be lost. You’re left with only your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is go on or not. But if you go on, it’s knowing you carry your scars with you.”

“Under the Wide and Starry Sky” by Nancy Horan

“Sooner or later, we all sit down to a banquet of consequences.”


“A Room with a View” by E.M. Forster

“When I think of what life is, and how seldom love is answered by love; it is one of the moments for which the world was made.”

“The Alchemist,” Paul Coelho

“When we love, we always strive to be better than we are. When we strive to be better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.”


“The Days of Abandonment” by Elena Ferrante

“Women without love lose the light in their eyes, women without love die while they are still alive.”


“Revolutionary Road” by Richard Yates

“You want to play house, you got to have a job. You want to play very nice house, very sweet house, then you got to have a job you don’t like. Great. This is the way ninety-eight-point-nine per cent of the people work things out, so believe me, buddy, you’ve got nothing to apologize for.”


“Atonement” by Ian McEwan

“In a story, you only had to wish, you only had to write it down and you could have the world.”


(Photos by Cindy Fazzi, October 2016)

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1 Comment

  1. 38 Lines from Novels and Movies You Won’t Soon Forget | Cindy Fazzi

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