Top Ten Quotable books I’ve read this year (AKA All The Quotes)


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature run by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week you compile a list of ten books that fit with the theme. All the details and how to join are available here.

Top Ten Quotable books I’ve read this year (AKA All The Quotes)

This is going to be a long one, because I can’t just choose ten. Sorry, but it’s not going to happen. In fact I could probably write a list of 50 from City of Stairs alone (be grateful I restricted myself to seven). So you’ll just have to make do with Ten books…and twenty-five quotes.

rivers of london

  1. Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch
  • “You put a spell on the dog,” I said as we left the house. “Just a small one,” said Nightingale.“So magic is real,” I said. “Which makes you a … what?” “A wizard.” “Like Harry Potter?” Nightingale sighed. “No,” he said. “Not like Harry Potter.”“In what way?” “I’m not a fictional character,” said Nightingale.
  • I gave the prescribed Metropolitan Police ‘first greeting’. “Oi!” I said “What do you think you’re doing?”
the wee free men

2. The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett

  • “The secret is not to dream,” she whispered. “The secret is to wake up. Waking up is harder. I have woken up and I am real. I know where I come from and I know where I’m going. You cannot fool me anymore. Or touch me. Or anything that is mine.”
  • “Yes! I’m me! I am careful and logical and I look up things I don’t understand! When I hear people use the wrong words, I get edgy! I am good with cheese. I read books fast! I think! And I always have a piece of string! That’s the kind of person I am!”

Darker Shade

3. A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

  • “The bodies in my floor all trusted someone. Now I walk on them to tea.”
  • “What are you?” she asked. “A monster,” said Kell hoarsely. “You’d better let me go.”The girl gave a small, mocking laugh. “Monsters don’t faint in the presence of ladies.” “Ladies don’t dress like men and pick pockets,” retorted Kell.Her smile only sharpened. “What are you really?” “Tied to your bed,” said Kell matter-of-factly.”And?”His brow furrowed. “And in trouble.”


4. Winter by Marissa Meyer

  • “I can’t believe this is happening. I can’t fight like this, or start a revolution, or be a queen. I can’t do anything like this. I’m broken. I’m literally broken.” Iko settled a hand on Cinder’s shoulder. “Yeah, but broken isn’t the same as unfixable.”
  • “Thorne’s voice pitched high in imitation of the queen. “The impostor of my beloved niece is vanquished … Let us put this messiness behind us while we go forward with the coronations … I am a psychotic, power-hungry nut basket and my breath smells really bad under this veil.”


5. The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan

  • “Spectacle is grounded in the illusion of control.”
  • “When people are cruel it’s often said that they have no heart, only a cold space or lump of ice in their chest. This was never true of Avalon. She had no heart, everyone knew, but there was nothing cold about her. In her chest burned an enormous coal, white-hot, brighter than the North Star. North knew the truth about Avalon: she was made of fire, and she would burn them all.”

The Goblin Emperor

6. The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison

  • “‘You consider that unjust, Serenity?’ ‘We consider it cruel,’ Maia said. ‘And we do not think that cruelty is ever just.’ ”
  • “Nothing can make death easier,” Cala said, “but silence can make it harder.”


7. Uprooted by Naomi Novik

  • “Truth didn’t mean anything without someone to share it with; you could shout truth into the air forever, and spend your life doing it, if someone didn’t come and listen.”
  • “I’m not stupid, nor a liar,” I said, “and if I can’t do any good, I can at least do something”

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet

8. The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

  • “I can wait for the galaxy outside to get a little kinder.”
  • “We cannot blame ourselves for the wars our parents start. Sometimes the very best thing we can do is walk away.”

The Graveyard Book

9. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

  • “We who make stories know that we tell lies for a living. But they are good lies that say true things, and we owe it to our readers to build them as best we can. Because somewhere out there is someone who needs that story. Someone who will grow up with a different landscape, who without that story will be a different person. And who with that story may have hope, or wisdom, or kindness, or comfort. And that is why we write.”
  • “You’re brave. You are the bravest person I know, and you are my friend. I don’t care if you are imaginary.”


10. City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett

  • “Time renders all people and all things silent. And gods, it seems, are no exception.”
  • “I don’t have the time or the energy to hate,’ says Shara. ‘I only wish to understand. People are what they are.”
  • “Shara was already an avid reader by then, but she had never realized until that moment what books meant, the possibility they presented: you could protect them forever, store them up like engineers store water, endless resources of time and knowledge snared in ink, tied down to paper, layered on shelves…. Moments made physical, untouchable, perfect, like preserving a dead hornet in crystal, one drop of venom forever hanging from its stinger.”
  • “The soul might be within the eyes, but the subconscious, the matter of their behaviour; that is in the hands. Watch a man’s hands, and you watch his heart.”
  • “History will not let us forget: it wears disguises, reintroduces itself to us, claims it is someone new and wonderful. But let us not forget.”
  • “Historians, I think, should be keepers of truth. We must tell things as they are – honestly, and without subversion. That is the greatest good one can do.”
  • “So if you’re losing the debate, you change the conversation.”



4 thoughts on “Top Ten Quotable books I’ve read this year (AKA All The Quotes)

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