3 Quotes 3 Days: Day 2

“When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow. When it healed, and Jem’s fears of never being able to play football were assuaged, he was seldom self-conscious about his injury. His left arm was somewhat shorter than his right; when he stood or walked, the back of his hand was at right angles to his body, his thumb parallel to his thigh. He couldn’t have cared less, so long as he could pass or punt. When enough years had gone by to enable us to look back on them, we sometimes discussed the events leading to his accident. I maintain that the Ewells started it all, but Jem, who was four years my senior, said it started long before that. He said it began the summer Dill came to us, when Dill first gave us the idea of making Boo Radley come out…”

–Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

There are many famous and memorable lines from To Kill a Mockingbird, but this is the novel’s opening paragraph.  I’ve read the book several times, but reading these lines make me want to read it all over again. Like many others, I’ve followed the news of Lee’s “new” book—to be released on Tuesday—that is a sequel to the story, although it was actually written before Mockingbird. Go Set a Watchman, from what I’ve read about it, is different in tone and voice from To Kill A Mockingbird; the characters are different, too, as they have changed over time. It will be interesting to read it. No matter what I think of Watchman though, it will not—and does not—detract from the magnificence of Mockingbird. Scout, Atticus, Boo Radley and the rest hold a dear place in my heart, as they do in the hearts of nearly everyone who has read the novel. (The movie, with Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch and Robert Duvall in his film debut as Boo Radley, is also wonderful.)

This is Day 2 of the 3 Quotes 3 Days Challenge. Jane Dougherty, prolific writer of stories and poems, nominated me for this challenge: to post a favorite quote for three successive days.

I nominate Rachel Carrera. Feel free to accept or not. Check out Rachel’s blog, which is filled with wonderful stories of her life, posts on autism awareness, “intense” fictional stories, and her own brand of quirky humor.

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3 Quotes 3 Days: Day 1

“Reader, I married him.”

–Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre

Jane Dougherty, prolific writer of stories, poems, pets, and life in France nominated me for this challenge: to post a favorite quote for three successive days.

I don’t often do blog challenges, and I have a lot going on right now, but this one seems manageable. And I love quotes!

Jane Eyre is one of my favorite books. I probably first read it when I was about 12 or 13. I read it again in high school, college, and when I was in grad school—when I actually picked-up on some of the 19th century cultural ideas (such as phrenology) that are discussed in the book. I read it again when my girls were little, and then when they were a bit older. Jane Eyre—I guess she’s been a companion through my life. This particular quote has even more significance for me now because my younger daughter chose it to adorn the fan she made and carried as she walked down the aisle during her recent wedding. It is trimmed with lace from my wedding veil. (Pause for everyone to say “awwwww.”) Her bridesmaids also carried handmade fans with literary quotations–totally appropriate for a woman who met her love while acting opposite him in A Streetcar Named Desire and who now teaches English. Jane Eyre is one of her favorite books, too.

Wedding fan.

Wedding fan.

The passage from Jane Eyre continues:

“A quiet wedding we had: he and I, the parson and clerk, were alone present. When we got back from church, I went into the kitchen of the manor-house, where Mary was cooking the dinner and John cleaning the knives, and I said—‘Mary, I have been married to Mr. Rochester this morning.’”

I’m going to nominate only one person on each day, and I’ve tried to pick people who also love quotes. There’s no pressure, and if you choose not to accept the challenge, that is absolutely fine with me. Feel free to pass it along, or not. On this first day, I nominate Marian Beaman: “Former Plain Girl” (turned college professor). Check out her blog.

She has a quotation for every occasion, so I hope she’ll accept the challenge.

Also—sorry, but I can’t seem to stop writing this post–readers may be interested in Malala Yousafzai’s campaign, #booksnotbullets. You can read about it here.

I’ve posted a photo of myself on Twitter holding a copy of Jane Eyre. Of course.

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