“Furious at the smallness of her mother’s life.”

Celeste Ng, Everything I Never Told You

Context: Marilyn Lee is going through her mother’s things, and she realises just how small her mother’s life as an abandoned housewife was. Her mother had never wanted Marilyn to be more. She wanted for Marilyn what she lost: a husband and a cookie cutter life.

I read this book last year, and I always knew I’d read it again, I just never thought I’d read it again so soon, but this book happens to be the book for my next book club meeting.

I love this quote because it says so much about Marilyn and her pain in that one sentence. It’s also very sad that her mother’s life did seem so small to her in the end. It’s also an interesting portrayal of the changing social attitudes during that time (1960’s) about women and their role in the home and in society.

“Concession doesn’t necessarily mean defeat, Charlie.”

Craig Silvey, Jasper Jones

Context: Charlie’s father is explaining to Charlie why it would go easier if Charlie didn’t butt heads with his mother all the time.

The quote stuck out to me as it’s something that is a personal struggle for me. For years I was always too proud to concede in any argument or fight, always thinking that if I were to back down from any argument, I would be seen as weak or the Loser. It took me years to understand that when personal relationships are involved, the only “losers” are the ones that allow their pride to override their affection for their loved ones.