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"I was not so much observing the play as observing the players. They were the monarchs, and the managers and reporters were their subjects. To report on Go as if it were a pursuit of supreme dignity and importance - and I could not pretend to understand it perfectly - I had to respect and admire the players. I was presently able to feel not only interest in the match but a sense of Go as an art, and that was because I reduced myself to nothing as I gazed at the Master."

Yasunari Kawabata in The Master of Go

"Such is the way of the fates with human endowments, in the individual and in the race. Examples must be legion of wisdom and knowledge that shone forth in the past and faded toward the present, that have been obscured through all the ages and into the present but will shine forth in the future."

Yasunari Kawabata in The Master of Go

"They were stealthy hunters, crack shots, and experienced survivalists, and, given the right tools, they believed that they would never find themselves in a situation in the wild that they could not control. But as they struggled to make their way along the shores of the River of Doubt, any basis for such confidence was quickly slipping away. Compared with the creatures of the Amazon, including the Indians whose territory they were invading, they were all - from the lowliest camarada to the former president of the United States - clumsy, conspicuous prey."

Candice Millard in The River of Doubt

"Truly amazing, what people can get used to, as long as there are a few compensations."

Margaret Atwood in The Handmaid's Tale

"Until I feared to lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing."

Harper Lee in To Kill a Mockingbird

"Why should a man be scorned if, finding himself in prison, he tries to get out and go home? Or if, when he cannot do so, he thinks and talks about other topics than jailers and prison-walls?"

J.R.R. Tolkien in A Tolkien Miscellany

"You are indeed teaching me about kinds of love I did not know. It is like looking into a deep pit. I am not sure whether I like your kind better than hatred. Oh, Orual - to take my love for you, because you know it goes down to my very roots and cannot be diminished by any other newer love, and then to make of it a weapon, a thing of policy and mastery, an instrument of torture - I begin to think I never knew you. Whatever comes after, something that was between us dies here."

C.S. Lewis in Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold

"You only learn to ask more questions."

Larry Niven in The Ringworld Engineers

"How strange it is that people of honest feelings and sensibility, who would not take advantage of a man born without arms or legs or eyes - how such people think nothing of abusing a man born with low intelligence."

Daniel Keyes in Flowers for Algernon

"It's one of those inexplicable things, how everything I've learned and experienced is brought to bear on the problem. Pushing too hard will only make things freeze up. How many great problems have gone unsolved because men didn't know enough, or have enough faith in the creative process and in themselves, to let go for the whole mind to work at it?"

Daniel Keyes in Flowers for Algernon

"'Oh, Val,' said Father. 'All you have to do is live your life, and everyone around you will be happier.' 'No greatness, then.' 'Val,' said Mother, 'goodness trumps greatness any day.' 'Not in the history books,' said Valentine. 'Then the wrong people are writing history, aren't they?' said Father."

Orson Scott Card in Ender in Exile

"If desire did not dim the brain, nobody would ever get married, drunk, or fat."

Orson Scott Card in Ender in Exile

"'You asked me, 'Do you call this living?' And I answer: Yes. It is exactly what I call living. And in my best hypothetical sense, I envy it very much.'"

Frederick Pohl in Gateway Scott notes: The speaker, Sigfrid, is a robot.

"'What am I supposed to do with this?' Kendra asked, pulling the knife out. 'Stab', Seth suggested."

Brandon Mull in Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary

"And I made a promise to myself that I would not consider enjoyment a sin. I take a pleasure in inquiring into things. I've never been content to pass a stone without looking under it. And it is a black disappointment to me that I can never see the far side of the moon".

John Steinbeck in East of Eden

"At some point, you have to stop running and turn around and face whoever wants you dead. The hard thing is finding the courage to do it."

Suzanne Collins in Catching Fire

"Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic."

Frank Herbert in Dune

"Furthermore, of all the methods for analyzing and communicating statistical information, well-designed data graphics are usually the simplest and at the same time the most powerful."

Edward R. Tufte in The Visual Display of Quantitative Information

"He watched the scene and thought of life; and (as always happened when he thought of life) he became sad. A gentle melancholy took possession of him. He felt how useless it was to struggle against fortune, this being the burden of wisdom which the ages had bequeathed to him."

James Joyce in Dubliners

"Here is the essence of mankind's creative genius: not the edifices of civilization nor the bang-flash weapons which can end it, but the words which fertilize new concepts like the spermatozoa attacking an ovum."

Dan Simmons in Hyperion

"I didn't want to hear about death. It was all anyone talked about, even when no one was actually talking about it."

Jonathan Safran Foer in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

"'I don't pay attention to politics.' 'You should. It's barely less important than your own heart beat.' 'I don't pay attention to that either.'"

Robert Heinlein in Stranger in a Strange Land

"Let the unseen days be. Today is more than enough."

J.R.R. Tolkien in The Children of Hurin

"Now that I thought about it, though, I realized that most people actually encourage you to turn bad. They seem to think that if you don't you'll never get anywhere in the world. And then on those rare occasions when they encounter somebody who's honest and pure-hearted, they look down on him and say he's nothing but a kid, a Botchan. If that's the way it is, it would be better if they didn't have those ethics classes in elementary school and middle school where the teacher is always telling you to be honest and not to lie. The schools might as well just go ahead and teach you how to tell lies, how to mistrust everybody, and how to take advantage of people. Wouldn't their students, and the world at large, be better off that way?"

Natsume Soseki in Botchan

"Odd how many suffering members of humankind have faced eternity obsessed with their bowels, their bedsores, or the meagerness of their diets."

Dan Simmons in The Fall of Hyperion

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