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Graham Greene
“The sense of unhappiness is so much easier to convey than that of happiness. In misery we seem aware of our own existence, even though it may be in the form of a monstrous egotism: this pain of mine is individual, this nerve that winces belongs to me and to no other. But happiness annihilates us: we lose our identity.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair

Joan Didion
“The impulse to write things down is a peculiarly compulsive one, inexplicable to those who do not share it, useful only accidentally, only secondarily, in the way that any compulsion tries to justify itself. I suppose that it begins or does not begin in the cradle. Although I have felt compelled to write things down since I was five years old, I doubt that my daughter ever will, for she is a singularly blessed and accepting child, delighted with life exactly as life presents itself to her, unafraid to go to sleep and unafraid to wake up. Keepers of private notebooks are a different breed altogether, lonely and resistant rearrangers of things, anxious malcontents, children afflicted apparently at birth with some presentiment of loss.”
Joan Didion, Slouching Towards Bethlehem

Shirley Hazzard
“Sometimes, as now, her heart twisted and broke under his determination to wound her. At others, she was almost convinced that she felt nothing more for him, that he had overdrawn on her endurance: then she would stay silent for awhile, almost at peace, beyond his reach, not knowing whether she had been utterly vanquished or become completely invincible. However, it required merely some slight attention on his part to restore all her apprehensions - for these extremes of feeling only existed within the compass of her love."

"In One's Own House
Shirley Hazzard, Cliffs of Fall and Other Stories

Lorrie Moore
“There were moments bristling with deadness, when she looked out at her life and went, "What?" Or worse, feeling interrupted and tired, "Wha—?”
Lorrie Moore, Birds of America

Lorrie Moore
“When she packed up to leave, she knew that she was saying goodbye to something important, which was not that bad, in a way, because it meant that at least you had said hello to it to begin with...”
Lorrie Moore, Birds of America

year in books
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499 books | 38 friends

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590 books | 131 friends

Alex Cl...
137 books | 259 friends

Jonathan Y
311 books | 34 friends

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