15 of the Greatest Lessons You Learned from a Book

Posted by Hayley on January 19, 2017


From the silly to the profound, the lessons we discover in books have a habit of sticking.

We don't fault the Chronicles of Narnia fan for still checking the backs of wardrobes…just in case. (Book lesson #4,552,134: Magic exists.) And we understand when an Austen enthusiast gives a bleak fellow a chance. He could be her tragically misunderstood Mr. Darcy, right? (Book lesson #1,329,827: Prejudice is bad.)

So what book lessons have stuck with you? We asked for your favorites on Facebook and Twitter, and we were not disappointed. Check out some of the best below.


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A lesson from Dune
"Fear is the mind-killer. (Also: Don't waste water!)"
Submitted by Steve



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A lesson from To Kill a Mockingbird
"You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…. Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it."
A quote submitted by Alona


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A lesson from The Sandman
"That dreams and ideas are truly the strongest power in the universe and that one should never stop dreaming."
Submitted by Donald


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A lesson from It
"Don't trust clowns."
Submitted by Imene


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A lesson from The Brothers Karamazov
"The biggest lies are the ones we tell ourselves."
Submitted by Deborah



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A lesson from The Siren
"Life is too short to edit yourself."
A quote submitted by M.


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A lesson from Tuesdays with Morrie
"Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel."
A quote submitted by Fatima


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A lesson from Wuthering Heights
"Don't become obsessed with your cousin."
Submitted by Sonya





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A lesson from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"A towel is the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have."
A quote submitted by Scott





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A lesson from God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater
"There's only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you've got to be kind."
A quote submitted by Shannon





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A lesson from A Song of Ice and Fire
"If you betray someone, don't accept any wedding invitations from that person."
Submitted by Leo





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A lesson from Siddhartha
"Searching means: having a goal. But finding means: being free, being open, having no goal."
A quote submitted by Karina


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A lesson from The Giving Tree
"The value of true and lasting friendships. They will enrich your life and break your heart at times…but they are so valuable."
A quote submitted by Alisha


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A lesson from almost every series
"Things usually turn out okay in the end. If not, there's probably a sequel."
Submitted by Aruna







What's the best lesson you've learned from a book? Share it with us in the comments!
(Top image credit: To Kill a Mockingbird)

Comments Showing 1-50 of 91 (91 new)


message 1: by Debbie (new)

Debbie Zapata "Words are pretty, but anyone can talk. Pay attention to the people who perform." ~~ Beach Music by Pat Conroy


message 2: by Mei (new)

Mei "Love as thou wilt!"
Kushiel's Dart


message 3: by Alyssa (new)

Alyssa Campbell The Wuthering Heights one made me laugh :)


message 4: by Carla (new)

Carla Learn from what they told you that you're doing wrong. It's not a quote but that is what I learn from this book

Pride and Prejudice


message 5: by Vivek (new)

Vivek Bagai "For the best is only bought at the cost of great pain" Colleen McCullough, The Thorn Birds


message 6: by Stacey (new)

Stacey “Don't surrender all your joy for an idea you used to have about yourself that isn't true anymore.
Cheryl Strayed, TTiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar


message 7: by Shubha (new)

Shubha Mishra Pretend you are happy when you are blue, it isn't very hard to do..


message 8: by Shubha (new)

Shubha Mishra I love new clothes. If everyone could just wear new clothes everyday, I reckon depression wouldn’t exist anymore.Sophie Kinsella Confessions of a Shopaholic (Shopaholic, #1) by Sophie Kinsella


message 9: by Lynx (last edited Jan 19, 2017 10:54AM) (new)

Lynx happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3) by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban


message 10: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Royan From Shakespeare: Older women should invest energy and emotion into absurdly complicated relationships with older bachelors.

From real life: Older bachelors don't seem to be very interested in energy, emotions, or older woman.


message 11: by Heather (new)

Heather There are other worlds than these. The Dark Tower from Stephen King.


message 12: by Ro (new)

Ro Love the Game of Thrones one :D


message 13: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Buchbinder Without moderation, anything can become a drug. Infinite Jest


message 14: by Sean (new)

Sean "these hoes ain't loyal" - The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin


message 16: by James (new)

James Adams When everything's at an impasse, shake things up and piss people off. Robert B. Parker taught me that, through the Spenser series.


message 17: by Katie (new)

Katie “Evil begins when you begin to treat people as things." - I Shall Wear Midnight


message 18: by Kelley (last edited Jan 19, 2017 06:00PM) (new)

Kelley Jennifer wrote: "From real life: Older bachelors don't seem to be very interested in energy, emotions, or older woman. ."

And this older woman is not interested in them! LOL! As the Wife of Bath says, "...may Christ Jesus send / Us husbands meek and young and fresh in bed...."


message 19: by Selena (new)

Selena One of the best lessons I learned from a book, I learned from a manga. :)

"I'll tell you a secret about storytelling. Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty were not perfect in the beginning. It's only happily ever after on the last page, right? If the princess had everything from the beginning, there wouldn't be a story. Anyone who is imperfect or incomplete can become the main character in the story." ~Shugo Chara vol 2.

We're all the main characters of our own story because none of us are perfect. ^^ We just have to work toward that "happily ever after".


message 20: by Mariam (new)

Mariam “The consequences of our actions are always so complicated, so diverse, that predicting the future is a very difficult business indeed.
Harry Potter prisoner of Azkaban


message 21: by Finnessa (new)

Finnessa Bacon sandwiches are everything. ~ Discworld in general.


message 22: by Hayley (new)

Hayley Shaver “Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something. That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien


message 23: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine To paraphrase: "Never be mean in anything; never be false; never be cruel."

The full quote: "Never," said my aunt, "be mean in anything; never be false; never be cruel. Avoid those three vices, Trot, and I can always be hopeful of you.” ― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield


message 24: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine I have not read most of the books listed or mentioned in the comments, but the quotes are great! Love them!


message 25: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Harry Potter is full of so many good ones, but I think my favorites are:

“If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

“We've all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That's who we really are.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix


message 26: by Edward (new)

Edward "Never laugh at live dragons." - J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit


message 27: by Caroline (new)

Caroline Stacey wrote: "“Don't surrender all your joy for an idea you used to have about yourself that isn't true anymore.
Cheryl Strayed, TTiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar"


I really like this quote Stacey.


message 28: by Idrissa (new)

Idrissa Edward wrote: ""Never laugh at live dragons." - J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit"

Good one


message 29: by Sriram (new)

Sriram The longer you have bought the thought the "truer" it is.

What to Say When You Talk to Yourself


message 30: by Magdah (new)

Magdah Amin "Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending"
Nora Roberts, The Liar


message 31: by warhawke (new)

warhawke
“God gives us the ugliness so we don’t take the beautiful things in life for granted.” <

Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover by Colleen Hoover



message 32: by Pearljamaholic (new)

Pearljamaholic “If death meant just leaving the stage long enough to change costume and come back as a new character...Would you slow down? Or speed up?” Invisible Monsters

Or

“This is your life and its ending one moment at a time.” Fight Club

Both by Palahniuk


message 33: by Kim (new)

Kim " 'He deserves death.'
'Deserves it! I daresay he does. Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.' "

"The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater"

The Fellowship of the Ring


message 34: by Marie (last edited Jan 20, 2017 05:59AM) (new)

Marie “I'll never get used to anything. Anybody that does they might as well be dead.”
Breakfast at Tiffany's
https://www.goodreads.com/book/photo/...


message 35: by Marie (new)

Marie “Nothing lasts, you see, not even the thoughts inside you. And you musn't
waste your time looking for them. Once a thing is gone, that is the end of it.” Paul Auster In the country of last things


message 36: by Norma (new)

Norma Ortiz “Debiste haber traído muchas cosas, pensó. Pero ahora no es tiempo de pensar en lo que no hiciste. Piensa en lo que puedes hacer con lo que tienes aquí.”

"You should have brought many things, he thought. But now is not the time to think about what you did not do. Think of what you can do with what you have here. "

The Old Man and the Sea


message 37: by Longhairpanda (new)

Longhairpanda “You do not write your life with words...You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.”
― Patrick Ness, A Monster Calls


message 38: by Mariam (new)

Mariam “We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,
“Wit beyond measure is man’s greatest treasure.”
, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,“
We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving.”
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows


message 39: by Pegacorn (new)

Pegacorn Books "Never trust a duck."

Will Herondale, from Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare (The Infernal Devices Book 1)


message 40: by Wise (new)

Wise Crusader "To promise not to do a thing is the surest way in the world to make a body want to go and do that very thing."
-Mark Twain, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.


message 41: by Kefiloe (new)

Kefiloe "This above all- to thine own self be true...."
Hamlet


message 42: by A.G.R. (new)

A.G.R. Goff Mariam wrote: "“The consequences of our actions are always so complicated, so diverse, that predicting the future is a very difficult business indeed.
Harry Potter prisoner of Azkaban"

This is so true but people still want quick, simple solutions for all the complicated problems in this world.


message 43: by Laura (new)

Laura LVD Everything that happens no matter how improbable has happened before. Life has been around for long but hasn´t renewed its stock of possibilities.
From "The House" by Manuel Mujica Lainez


message 44: by Oumaima (new)

Oumaima Farhi Every book has a story,and every story hides a lesson..


message 45: by Mariam (new)

Mariam Oumaima wrote: "Every book has a story,and every story hides a lesson.."

thats a really good quote which book is it from


message 46: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth Debbie wrote: ""Words are pretty, but anyone can talk. Pay attention to the people who perform." ~~ Beach Music by Pat Conroy"


One of the most amazing books I've ever read.


message 47: by Dunia (new)

Dunia Toledo Hayley wrote: "“Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something. That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s w..."

My favorite!


message 48: by sologdin (new)

sologdin puff puff give - Paradise Lost.


message 49: by Jgrace (new)

Jgrace From Jane Eyre

“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”

“I would always rather be happy than dignified.”

I can live alone, if self-respect, and circumstances require me so to do. I need not sell my soul to buy bliss. I have an inward treasure born with me, which can keep me alive if all extraneous delights should be withheld, or offered only at a price I cannot afford to give.”


message 50: by Kendall (new)

Kendall Moore "Freedom isn't free."

Lesson from Starship Troopers.


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