“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.”

John Muir

“It was more that she wasn’t hiding behind anything. She never did. Whenever she spoke it was always straight from the heart, never for the sake of speaking.”

From ‘A Death in the Family’ by Karl Ove Knausgaard

“Moments left, Teddy thought. A handful of heartbeats. That was what life was. A heartbeat followed by a heartbeat. A breath followed by a breath. One moment followed by another moment and then there was a last moment. Life was as fragile as a bird’s heartbeat, fleeting as the bluebells in the wood. It didn’t matter, he realized, he didn’t mind, he was going where millions had gone before and where millions would follow after. He shared his fate with the many. And now. This moment. This moment was infinite. He was part of the infinite. The tree and the rock and the water. The rising of the sun and the running of the deer. Now.”

From “A God in Ruins” by Kate Atkinson

“I derive the greatest pleasure from travelling. I like the idea of knocking about the world and getting used to the ways and customs of men.”

Margaret Fountaine

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars”

From ‘On The Road’ by Jack Kerouac

“A story was a form of telepathy. By means of inking symbols onto a page, she was able to send thoughts and feelings from her mind to her reader’s. It was a magical process, so commonplace that no one stopped to wonder at it.”

From ‘Atonement’ by Ian McEwan

“They wanted spring, of course they wanted it, more than anything. They longed for sun with every pore of their skin. But spring hurts. If spring can come, if things can be different, how can you bear what your existence has been?”

From ‘The Siege’ by Helen Dunmore

“The four of them ran like wild deer, leaping low bushes of lavender and thyme, whooping with panicky delight, lean and light and half-naked—or, more accurately, nine-tenths naked —through the pine trees and après-midi dappling. They ran on winged feet, and their laughter looped the air behind them like chains of bubbles in translucent water.

High up on the swimming pool terrace the little family, frozen together for a photographic instant, watched their flight open-mouthed, like the ghosts of summers past; or, indeed, of summers yet to come.”

From ‘Up At A Villa’ by Helen Simpson

“Tell them stories. They need the truth. You must tell them true stories, and everything will be well, just tell them stories.”

From ‘The Amber Spyglass’ by Philip Pullman