Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature that was created by The Broke and the Bookish and hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Born from a love of lists and a love of books each week there’s a new topic for bloggers to list their ‘top ten’.
Top Ten Inspirational/Thought-Provoking Book Quotes
When it comes to my ‘favourite’ book quotes I have a lot. Some I love because they never fail to bring a smile to my face, others because they’re cute and romantic, and others because they’ve stayed with me no matter how many other books I’ve read since. The ten I picked for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic are all from that last category – quotes that have meant something to me from books I haven’t been able to forget.
Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram
I really identified with Darius’s character largely because of the way he struggled with his own mental health. The scene this quote comes from, the conversation between Darius and his father was just perfect, and the last sentence has pretty much become my mantra.
“You’re okay,” he murmured.
“No. I’m not.”
“I know.” He rubbed my back up and down. “It’s okay not to be okay.”
The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
When I think of The Book Thief the first quote that comes to mind is the very last sentence; “I am haunted by humans”, but the scene that I can never forget is the one quite near the very end (no spoilers for anyone who hasn’t read this book yet) that never fails to make me cry.
“His soul sat up. It met me. Those kinds of souls always do—the best ones. The ones who rise up and say ‘I know who you are and I am ready. Not that I want to go, of course, but I will come.’ Those souls are always light because more of them have been put out. More of them have already found their way to other places.”
They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
This is my favourite book by Adam Silvera just because of the concept. The idea of knowing what day you’ll die is unique (and in some ways quite scary)but Silvera has created incredible characters, and their development and their relationships with the people they’ll leave behind really make this book.
“I cannot tell you how you will survive without me. I cannot tell you how to mourn me. I cannot convince you to not feel guilty if you forget the anniversary of my death, or if you realize days or weeks or months have gone by without thinking about me. I just want you to live.”
The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven
The Unexpected Everything has a lot of important messages, it shines a light on revenge porn and slut shaming, and it’s a hugely underrated book. I loved Izzy’s voice, and her character development throughout the story as she’s brought low by what’s done to her was heartbreaking to read.
“What do I want to be now? Bold. Fierce. Honest. A fighter. A revolutionary. A bitch. Because the way the world treats teenage girls – as sluts, as objects, as bitches – is not okay. It’s the exact opposite of okay.”
Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
This is another book with incredible mental health representation. Like Darius Taylor was a character I really related too, some of the scenes where she talks about her struggles with mental health had me thinking “yes, me too” as I was reading.
“That’s what we do. We walk a tightrope every day. Getting out the door is a tightrope. Going grocery shopping is a tightrope. Socializing is a tightrope. Things that most people consider to be normal, daily parts of life are the very things we fear and struggle with the most, and yet here we are, moving forward anyway. That’s not weak.”
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
Of all of Morgan Matson’s releases Second Chance Summer is my favourite (tied with Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour). Reading about Taylor’s relationship with her family, especially her relationship with her dad, my mind automatically went to myself and my family, and well it’s no surprise I was a mess by the last page.
“And now that I knew that the time we had together was limited, I was holding on to it, trying to stretch it out, all the while wishing I’d appreciated what I’d had earlier.”
Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire
Every Heart a Doorway is the first book I picked up with asexual representation. I identify as asexual myself, and it was so important seeing that representation because it wasn’t anywhere when I was younger. I saw my teen-aged self in Nancy and because of that this book will always be a favourite of mine.
“This was always the difficult part, back when she’d been at her old school: explaining that ‘asexual’ and ‘aromantic’ were different things. She liked holding hands and trading kisses. She’d had several boyfriends in elementary school, just like most of the other girls, and she had always found those practice relationships completely satisfying. It wasn’t until puberty had come along and changed the rules that she’d started pulling away in confusion and disinterest.”
The King’s Men by Nora Sakavic
There’s something about these characters’ rise from underdogs to champions that never fails to make me smile. Nora Sakavic put all the characters in the All For the Game trilogy through so much, but you can really see how far they’ve come and for em this speech really represents that.
“All eyes are on you. It’s time to show them what you’re made of. There’s no room for doubt, no room for second guesses, no room for error. This is your night. This is your game. This is your moment. Seize it with everything you’ve got. Pull out all the stops and lay it all on the line. Fight because you don’t know how to die quietly. Win because you don’t know how to lose. This king’s ruled long enough—it’s time to tear his castle down.”
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
It wouldn’t really be a post of my ‘Top Ten Inspirational/Thought-Provoking Book Quotes’ without The Night Circus. I love this book because it’s pure magic, there are so many incredible quotes from this book I could have picked but as a reader and writer this one really sticks out for me.
“Someone needs to tell those tales. When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsang souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There’s magic in that. It’s in the listener, and for each and every ear it will be different, and it will affect them in ways they can never predict. From the mundane to the profound. You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift. Your sister may be able to see the future, but you yourself can shape it, boy.”
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda was one of the first YA contemporaries I read, and Love, Simon is one of the best book to film adaptations I’ve seen. I love the relationship between Simon and Blue but what stood out for me the most reading this book was Simon’s struggle after being outed.
“And you know what? You don’t get to say it’s not a big thing. This is a big fucking thing, okay? This was supposed to be—this is mine. I’m supposed to decide when and where and who knows and how I want to say it.”
Did you take part in this week’s Top Ten Tuesday?
What’s one book quote that’s inspiration or thought provoking for you, that you know you’ll never forget no matter how many other books you read? Would any of my books and/or quotes have made your list?
What’s the best mental health representation you’ve read? Who was the first character you saw yourself in because of what they represented?