Perhaps one of my favorite things about Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly is her masterful manipulation of language. This book is teeming with fantastic quotes. Here are a few of my favorites. I’ve divided them into quotes by Andi (the present day Narrator) and Alexandrine (the narrator during the French Revolution scenes) and a few miscellaneous:
"She's got a big belt around her hips. It has a shiny buckle with PRADA on it, which is Italian for insecure."
"I don't like hope very much. In fact, I hate it. It's the crystal meth of emotions. It hooks you fast and kills you hard.”
“Why is it that weeks and months and years go by so quickly, all in a blur, but moments last forever.”
“If I could only go back… All I’d need is a minute. Not major time. Not the kind of time it takes to compose a symphony. Build a palace. Fight a war. Just a few crappy seconds. The kind of time it takes to tie a shoe. Peel a banana. Blow your nose. But I haven’t got it. And I never will.”
"It's a good thing you and your pills weren't around a few hundred years ago or there never would have been a Vermeer or a Caravaggio. You'd have drugged "Girl with a Pearl Earring" and "The Taking of Christ" right the hell out of them."
“No one will tell me music’s not enough, when music’s the only thing I’ve got.”
"I play until my fingers are blue and stiff from the cold, and then I keep on playing. Until I'm lost in the music. Until I am the music--notes and chords, the melody and harmony. It hurts, but it's okay because when I'm the music, I'm not me. Not sad. Not afraid. Not desperate. Not guilty"
“What is it that mends broken people? Jesus? Chocolate? New Shoes? I wish someone could tell me. I wish I had an answer.”
"I have done this--made the sad prince laugh. Made his grieving parents smile. None but me. Think you only kings have power? Stand on a stage and hold the hearts of men in your hands. Make them laugh with a gesture, cry with a word. Make them love you. And you will know what power is." –Alexandrine
"There were nights when I got nothing, [but] I still played. With no one to hear me and no one to pay me, and it did not matter.
"On those nights, the words were for me alone. They came up unbidden from my heart. They slipped over my tongue and spilled from my mouth. And because of them I, who was nothing and nobody, was a prince of Denmark, a maid of Verona, a queen of Egypt. I was a sour misanthrope, a beetling hypocrite, a conjurer's daughter, a mad and murderous king.” –Alexandrine
“Be careful what you show the world. You never know when the wolf is watching.”
"Cry your grief to God. Howl to the heavens. Tear your shirt. Your hair. Your flesh. Gouge out your eyes. Carve out your heart. And what will you get from Him? Only silence. Indifference. But merely stand looking at the playbills, sighing because your name is not on them, and the devil himself appears at your elbow full of sympathy and suggestions. And that's why I did it....Because God loves us, but the devil takes an interest." –Alexandrine
“Poor Ophelia. She was the smartest of them all… She alone knew that one must meet the world’s madness with more madness… For mad I may be, but I will never be convenient.”
"One expects decent people to stand up for the good of all. Decent people shut their doors and hide behind them as decent people do. Massacres could never happen if it weren't for decent people." –Alexandrine
“I am not afraid of beatings or blood anymore. I’m not afraid of guards or guillotines.
There is only one thing I fear now—love.
For I have seen it and I have felt it and I know that it is love, not death, that undoes us.”
“It goes on, this world, stupid and brutal.
But I do not.
I do not.” –Both Andi and Alexandrine
"Life’s all about the revolution, isn’t it? The one inside, I mean.” -Virgil
Want to know more about Revolution? See our Review here.
Like "Book in Quotes?" See our Book in Quotes post for The Book Thief by Markus Zusak!