Quotes with books
When I'm not writing or tweaking my computer, I do embroidery. When I'm not plunging into the past, tweaking, or embroidering, I'm reading books about history, computers, or embroidery.
In the company of friends, writers can discuss their books, economists the state of the economy, lawyers their latest cases, and businessmen their latest acquisitions, but mathematicians cannot discuss their mathematics at all. And the more profound their work, the less understandable it is.
Some books are to be tasted, others swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested.
The reason why so few good books are written is, that so few people that can write know anything.
Literary Studies (1879)
I don't want to spend the rest of my life doing as Toscanini did, studying and restudying 50 pieces of music. It would bore me to death. I want to want to conduct. I want to play the piano. I want to write for Hollywood. I want to write symphonic music. I want to keep on trying to be, in the full sense of that wonderful word, a musician. I also want to teach. I want to write books and poetry. And I think I can still do justice to them all.
Interview with The New York Times.
Most of us know what we need to do to make our lives more fulfilled and useful, but sometimes we forget. My little books are gentle reminders of those simple things which, if done well and in a spirit of love, can significantly change our lives.
All that Mankind has done, thought, gained or been is lying as in magic preservation in the pages of Books. They are the chosen possession of men.
If my books had been any worse I should not have been invited to Hollywood and if they had been any better I should not have come.
I too have read all the books and written all I am ever going to.
Letter to a friend shortly before his suicide.
I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God. We see a universe marvelously arranged and obeying certain laws, but only dimly understand these laws. Our limited minds cannot grasp the mysterious force that moves the constellations.
I love the adventure that comes with this work, the travel and all that. But also the craft, the storytelling. From a kid, I remember enjoying certain books and getting swept away in movies.
Books are the negative pictures of thought, and the more sensitive the mind that receives their images, the more nicely the finest lines are reproduced.
Never use an adverb to modify the verb "said" ...he admonished gravely. To use an adverb this way (or almost any way) is a mortal sin. The writer is now exposing himself in earnest, using a word that distracts and can interrupt the rhythm of the exchange. I have a character in one of my books tell how she used to write historical romances "full of rape and adverbs."
From Leonard's 10 Rules of Writing, as appeared in The New York Times (July 16, 2001)
Do not consider it proof just because it is written in books, for a liar who will deceive with his tongue will not hesitate to do the same with his pen.
My Alma mater was books, a good library... I could spend the rest of my life reading, just satisfying my curiosity.
Autobiograhy of Malcolm X.
Our great lack is want of thoroughness. How seldom you find a young man or woman who is willing to prepare for his life-work! A little education is all they want, a little smattering of books, and then they are ready for business.
Pushing to the Front or, Success Under Difficulties (1894)
If the 1st Amendment means anything, it means that a state has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his own house, what books he may read or what films he may watch.
If some books are deemed most baneful and their sale forbid, how then with deadlier facts, not dreams of doting men? Those whom books will hurt will not be proof against events. Events, not books should be forbid.
Bond is an enigmatic character. My only real clue to his personality was a line from one of the books, where he said that he didn't particularly enjoy killing people, but he took pride in doing it well. So that was how I played him.
There are some books which cannot be adequately reviewed for twenty or thirty years after they come out.
Evil and the Devil are two different things. The Devil is how humans like to imagine evil, with horns and a tail. Evil is part of our personality. I've never believed in occultism or the Devil, and I'm not at all religious. I'd rather read science books than something about occultism. When it comes to cinema, evil is simply a form of entertainment to me.
Buying books would be a good thing if one could also buy the time to read them in: but as a rule the purchase of books is mistaken for the appropriation of their contents.
Parerga and Paralipomena (1851)
Love goes to love like schoolboys from their books. But love from love, towards school with heavy looks.
Love goes toward love, as schoolboys from their books; but love from love, toward school with heavy looks.
Books ain’t no good. A guy needs somebody — to be near him. A guy goes nuts if he ain’t got nobody.
Of Mice and Men (1937)
Books are good enough in their own way, but they are a mighty bloodless substitute for life.
Virginibus Puerisque and Other Papers (1881)
It might be a good idea if the various countries of the world would occasionally swap history books, just to see what other people are doing with the same set of facts.
Beware you be not swallowed up in books! An ounce of love is worth a pound of knowledge.
Letter to Joseph Benson (November 7, 1768)
There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all.
The Preface To ‘The Picture Of Dorian Gray’, 1891