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Norwegian Wood – Haruki Murakami

  • “If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”
  • “What happens when people open their hearts?”
  • “They get better.”
  • “Nobody likes being alone that much. I don’t go out of my way to make friends, that’s all. It just leads to disappointment. ”
  • “But who can say what’s best? That’s why you need to grab whatever chance you have of happiness where you find it, and not worry about other people too much. My experience tells me that we get no more than two or three such chances in a life time, and if we let them go, we regret it for the rest of our lives.”
  • “I want you always to remember me. Will you remember that I existed, and that I stood next to you here like this?”
  • “I was always hungry for love. Just once, I wanted to know what it was like to get my fill of it — to be fed so much love I couldn’t take any more. Just once. ”
  • “Despite your best efforts, people are going to be hurt when it’s time for them to be hurt.”
  • “Letters are just pieces of paper,” I said. “Burn them, and what stays in your heart will stay; keep them, and what vanishes will vanish.”
  • “I have a million things to talk to you about. All I want in this world is you. I want to see you and talk. I want the two of us to begin everything from the beginning.”
  • “No truth can cure the sorrow we feel from losing a loved one. No truth, no sincerity, no strength, no kindness can cure that sorrow. All we can do is see it through to the end and learn something from it, but what we learn will be no help in facing the next sorrow that comes to us without warning.”
  • “What a terrible thing it is to wound someone you really care for and to do it so unconsciously.”
  • “Only the Dead stay seventeen forever.”
  • “If you’re in pitch blackness, all you can do is sit tight until your eyes get used to the dark”
  • “What makes us the most normal,” said Reiko, “is knowing that we’re not normal.”
  • “People leave strange little memories of themselves behind when they die.”
  • “So what’s wrong if there happens to be one guy in the world who enjoys trying to understand you?”
  • “Not that we were incompatible: we just had nothing to talk about.”
  • “Memory is a funny thing. When I was in the scene, I hardly paid it any mind. I never stopped to think of it as something that would make a lasting impression, certainly never imagined that eighteen years later I would recall it in such detail. I didn’t give a damn about the scenery that day. I was thinking about myself. I was thinking about the beautiful girl walking next to me. I was thinking about the two of us together, and then about myself again. It was the age, that time of life when every sight, every feeling, every thought came back, like a boomerang, to me. And worse, I was in love. Love with complications. The scenery was the last thing on my mind.”
  • “She’s letting out her feelings. The scary thing is not being able to do that. When your feelings build up and harden and die inside, then you’re in big trouble.”
  • “Something inside me had dropped away, and nothing came in to fill the cavern.”
  • “I made up my mind I was going to find someone who would love me unconditionally three hundred and sixty five days a year, I was still in elementary school at the time – fifth or sixth grade – but I made up my mind once and for all.”
  • She watched the rising smoke for a while, thinking. “I guess I’ve been waiting so long I’m looking for perfection. That makes it tough.”
  • “Which is why I am writing this book. To think. To understand. It just happens to be the way I’m made. I have to write things down to feel I fully comprehend them.”
  • “Things like that happen all the time in this great big world of ours. It’s like taking a boat out on a beautiful lake on a beautiful day and thinking both the sky and the lake are beautiful. So stop eating yourself up alive. Things will go where they’re supposed to go if you just let them take their natural course.”