Girls Aloud Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Girls Aloud. Here they are! All 100 of them:

Caine met Diana's disbelieving gaze and laughed aloud. "Why so gloomy? Doesn't every little girl want to grow up to be a queen?" "Princess," Diana said. "So, you got a promotion," Caine said.
Michael Grant (Plague (Gone, #4))
Terra read the words aloud: “If I’m one day gone, you’ll know it’s here that I go. Into the black darkness that has become my foe. No one will look and no one will ever find. My memory will only exist in the broken mind.” She paused after reading the entry and then traced her fingers along the edges of the page. “There are more words written under the blackness. You can just barely see that they were words but I can’t make them out well enough to read.
Misty Mount (The Shadow Girl)
Martin is your best friend, isn't he?' a sweet and well-intentioned girl once said when both of us were present: it was the only time I ever felt awkward about this precious idea, which seemed somehow to risk diminishment if it were uttered aloud.
Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
It was a vow, a piece of a chant, their scripture, something they took so seriously that saying it aloud embarrassed them.
Holly Black (The Coldest Girl in Coldtown)
Sometimes I still feel that there are two of me: one clean, flawless picture, the other imperfect and cracked; one boy, one girl; one voice that speaks aloud and one that whispers in my ear; one publicly known to have been troubled but be on the mend, the other who has privately lost something to do with innocence and gained something to do with knowledge and adulthood that can never be undone. I feel sometimes there are things that tear me in two directions, that there are two sets of thoughts that grow side by side. But then I realize that I am whole, whatever that means and does not mean; I am complete without the need for additions or alteration.
Abigail Tarttelin (Golden Boy)
He reached into the bag and drew out an odd array of manga, ripped paperbacks of books both classic and modern, and a small stack of crumpled magazines. "See, I even brought some things to read aloud. I wasn't sure what you'd like, so there's a bit of everything.
Holly Black (The Coldest Girl in Coldtown)
I was on a mission. I had to learn to comfort myself, to see what others saw in me and believe it. I needed to discover what the hell made me happy other than being in love. Mission impossible. When did figuring out what makes you happy become work? How had I let myself get to this point, where I had to learn me..? It was embarrassing. In my college psychology class, I had studied theories of adult development and learned that our twenties are for experimenting, exploring different jobs, and discovering what fulfills us. My professor warned against graduate school, asserting, "You're not fully formed yet. You don't know if it's what you really want to do with your life because you haven't tried enough things." Oh, no, not me.." And if you rush into something you're unsure about, you might awake midlife with a crisis on your hands," he had lectured it. Hi. Try waking up a whole lot sooner with a pre-thirty predicament worm dangling from your early bird mouth. "Well to begin," Phone Therapist responded, "you have to learn to take care of yourself. To nurture and comfort that little girl inside you, to realize you are quite capable of relying on yourself. I want you to try to remember what brought you comfort when you were younger." Bowls of cereal after school, coated in a pool of orange-blossom honey. Dragging my finger along the edge of a plate of mashed potatoes. I knew I should have thought "tea" or "bath," but I didn't. Did she want me to answer aloud? "Grilled cheese?" I said hesitantly. "Okay, good. What else?" I thought of marionette shows where I'd held my mother's hand and looked at her after a funny part to see if she was delighted, of brisket sandwiches with ketchup, like my dad ordered. Sliding barn doors, baskets of brown eggs, steamed windows, doubled socks, cupcake paper, and rolled sweater collars. Cookouts where the fathers handled the meat, licking wobbly batter off wire beaters, Christmas ornaments in their boxes, peanut butter on apple slices, the sounds and light beneath an overturned canoe, the pine needle path to the ocean near my mother's house, the crunch of snow beneath my red winter boots, bedtime stories. "My parents," I said. Damn. I felt like she made me say the secret word and just won extra points on the Psychology Game Network. It always comes down to our parents in therapy.
Stephanie Klein (Straight Up and Dirty)
I’m in love with that girl,” she said out loud in amazement, because she knew that this was a life-changing thing and life-changing things should be said aloud, should have a moment in time, and a place in the air, some molecular structure to make them real. I’m in love with that girl, she heard as it reverberated inside her head. And it was truth, she realised, as things are which you don’t think, but discover have always existed.
Paula Boock (Dare Truth or Promise)
Ronan shrugged again. Questions cascaded through Adam, too difficult to say aloud. Was Ronan even human? Half a dreamer, half a dream, maker of ravens and hoofed girls and entire lands. No wonder his Aglionby uniform had choked him, no wonder his father had sworn him to secrecy, no wonder he could not make himself focus on classes. Adam had realized this before, but now he realized it again, more fully, larger, the ridiculousness of Ronan Lynch in a classroom for aspiring politicians.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
I’ve even taught them a bit of French.” Chase read aloud from the board. “‘Donnez-nous le butin, ou nous vous ferons jeter par-dessus bord.’ What does that mean?” She hedged. “Hand over the booty, or you’ll walk the plank.
Tessa Dare (The Governess Game (Girl Meets Duke, #2))
Now we have done it. Now we really have done it.” Yes, he thought. Now we have really done it. And when she went to sleep suddenly like a tired young girl and lay beside him lovely in the moonlight that showed the beautiful new strange line of her head as she slept on her side he leaned over and said to her but not aloud, “I’m with you. No matter what else you have in your head I’m with you and I love you.
Ernest Hemingway (The Garden of Eden)
I am fat with love! Husky with ardor! Morbidly obese with devotion! A happy, busy bumblebee of marital enthusiasm. I positively hum around him, fussing and fixing. I have become a strange thing. I have become a wife. I find myself steering the ship of conversations- bulkily, unnaturally- just so I can say his name aloud. I have become a wife, I have become a bore, I have been asked to forfeit my Independent Young Feminist card. I don't care. I balance his checkbook, I trim his hair. I've gotten so retro, at one point I will probably use the word pocketbook, shuffling out the door in my swingy tweed coat, my lips red, on the way to the beauty parlor. Nothing bothers me. Everything seems like it will turn out fine, every bother transformed into an amusing story to be told over dinner. 'So I killed a hobo today, honey...hahahaha! Ah, we have fun
Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
I worked through memories like weeping wounds. I wrote tedious accounts of petty conflicts and read them aloud to people. I removed layer after layer of rot.
Merri Lisa Johnson (Girl in Need of a Tourniquet: Memoir of a Borderline Personality)
You light a fire early in your girlhood. You stoke it and tend it. You protect it at all costs. You don’t let it rage into a mountain of light, because that’s not becoming of a girl. You keep it secret. You let it burn. You look into the eyes of other girls and see their fires flickering there, offer conspiratorial nods, never speak aloud of a near-unbearable heat, a growing conflagration. You tend the flame because if you don’t you’re stuck, in the cold, on your own, doomed to seasonal layers, doomed to practicality, doomed to this is just the way things are, doomed to settling and understanding and reasoning and agreeing and seeing it another way and seeing it his way and seeing it from all the other ways but your own.
Rachel Yoder (Nightbitch)
if there’s one thing I learned this year, it’s that you rise up to the circumstances when they are presented to you. We are so much stronger than we think we are. But sometimes, we go through decades without having a reason to be tested. The thing about life is, it always hits us. No one leads a charmed life. Even the blond, gorgeous, picture-perfect, popular rich girl harbors secrets. Even the football captain. Even the rich mother of two who married her hot millionaire ex-student. The ballet prodigy. Everyone’s got a story, and we all have chapters we’d rather not read aloud.
L.J. Shen (Pretty Reckless (All Saints High, #1))
But who decides what the meaning is?" Zachary wonders aloud. "The reader. The player. The audience. That's what you bring to it, even if you don't make the choices along the way, you decide what it means to you." The knitting girl pauses to catch a slipped stitch and then continues. "A game or a book that has meaning to me might be boring to you, or vice versa. Stories are personal, you relate or you don't.
Erin Morgenstern (The Starless Sea)
He was remembering the nights he'd sat upstairs with one or both of his boys or with his girl in the crook of his arm, their damp bath-smelling heads hard against his ribs as he read aloud to them from "Black Beauty" or "The Chronicles of Narnia". How his voice alone, its palpable resonance, had made them drowsy. These were evenings, and there were hundreds of them, maybe thousands, when nothing traumatic enough to leave a scar had befallen the nuclear unit. Evenings of plain vanilla closeness in his black leather chair; sweet evenings of doubt between the nights of bleak certainty. They came to him now, these forgotten counterexamples, because in the end, when you were falling into water, there was no solid thing to reach for but your children.
Jonathan Franzen (The Corrections)
Life was simpler when she was a horny ghost who wanted to be a real girl,” I decide aloud. “We should have fucked her brains out, spoiled her, and kept her out of Hell,” Gage adds.
Kristy Cunning (One Apocalypse (The Dark Side, #4))
Papa would say a word and the girl would have to spell it aloud and then paint it on the wall, as long as she got it right. After a month, the wall was recoated. A fresh cement page.
Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
She lay awake for many hours into the night, among her trunks and trinkets. She glanced over at the neat stacks of materials and toys and opera plumes and said, aloud, "Does it really belong to me?" Or was it the elaborate trick of an old lady convincing herself that she had a past? After all, once a time was over, it was done. You were always in the present. She may have been a girl once, but was not now. Her childhood was gone and nothing could fetch it back.
Ray Bradbury (Dandelion Wine)
William: What are you looking for in a woman? Reyes: I’ve found my angel, Danika. She’s all I need. William: Really? That’s, like, weird to me. Men should need many girls. No one girl should be so important. Reyes: How sad for you. William: I’m not sad. You’re sad! Reyes: Why are you so defensive about this? William: Let’s move on. Favorite outfit? Reyes: First, you said girls rather than women. Why is that, I wonder? Because you care about one girl in particular? Anyway, clothes are clothes. I don’t have any favorites. William: Go to hell. I care about no one and I’m proud to admit that! Favorite moment in the series so far? Reyes: The first time Danika looked at me with trust and acceptance in her eyes. I’m still reeling. William: And just so you know, girl was a slip of the tongue. Now. Least favorite moment in the series? Reyes: Every time I had to kill Maddox. William: Really? That would have been my favorite. Anyway, hobbies? Reyes: Do you really have to ask? Yes? Fine. Cutting myself. I’ve started to draw shapes. Like hearts. William: You actually admitted that aloud. [snicker] [..] Reyes: Happy for the first time in what seems an eternity. William: Not that you deserve it. Really, I didn’t say girl for any particular reason. So what do you think of the fact that your home has been invaded by women? Reyes: As long as I have Danika, I don’t care who lives with us. William: Who do you think is the smartest Lord? Reyes: Me. Look who I picked to spend eternity with. William: I think you’re the dumbest! Seriously, girl was meant to encompass everyone old enough to be bedded by me. Now, if you knew you only had twenty-four hours before the Hunters found Pandora’s box and killed you, what would you do in the time you had left to live? Reyes: Not even death can keep me away from my angel. I would find a way to change such a fate. Again. William: What kind of underwear are you wearing? Note from William: Bastard flipped me off and left. Final thoughts from William: Reyes’s thoughts about me and my slip of the tongue were ridiculous and unfounded!
Gena Showalter (Into the Dark (Lords of the Underworld, #0.5,3.5; Atlantis #4.5))
Calming ain't curing, is it, girl?" the woman asked aloud. "Keeping you hushed might keep me out of jail, but sure as the world, calming ain't curing.
Jonathan Odell (The Healing)
Poems are not for explaining," she said, her tone as bored and faintly scornful as his. "They are for pretty girls to read aloud. Everyone knows that.
Emily Horner (A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend)
She stood on the end of the dock, pale and goosefleshed and shivering in the fog. In her hand, Needle seemed to whisper to her. Stick them with the pointy end, it said, and, don’t tell Sansa! Mikken’s mark was on the blade. It’s just a sword. If she needed a sword, there were a hundred under the temple. Needle was too small to be a proper sword, it was hardly more than a toy. She’d been a stupid little girl when Jon had it made for her. “It’s just a sword,” she said, aloud this time . . . . . . but it wasn’t. Needle was Robb and Bran and Rickon, her mother and her father, even Sansa. Needle was Winterfell’s grey walls, and the laughter of its people. Needle was the summer snows, Old Nan’s stories, the heart tree with its red leaves and scary face, the warm earthy smell of the glass gardens, the sound of the north wind rattling the shutters of her room. Needle was Jon Snow’s smile. He used to mess my hair and call me “little sister,” she remembered, and suddenly there were tears in her eyes.
George R.R. Martin (A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, #4))
Evans, Evans!" He Cried. Mrs. Smith was talking aloud to himself, Agnes the servant girl cries to Mrs. Filmer in the kitchen. "Evans, Evans" he had said as she brought in the tray. She jumped, she did. She scuttled downstairs.
Virginia Woolf (Mrs. Dalloway)
She looked so unbearably sad, and it wrecked him. "You love someone else," she whispered. Wait.... what? It took him a moment to realize he hasn't said it aloud. Has she gone mad? "What are you talking about?" "Billie Bridgerton. You're supposed to marry her. I don't think you remember, bu--" "I'm not in love with Billie," he interrupted
Julia Quinn (The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband (Rokesbys, #2))
I’m not a terrible employee, it’s just that we’re covering the same material that was sent via email two days ago. Maybe some people need to have the email read aloud to them. I do not. I’m an excellent reader, it’s one of my strengths.
Jana Aston (Good Time (Vegas Billionaires #2))
I lie in bed at night, after ending my prayers with the words "Ich danke dir für all das Gute und Liebe und Schöne" and I'm filled with joy. I think of going into hiding, my health and my whole being as das Gute; Peter's love (which is still so new and fragile and which neither of us dares to say aloud), the future, happiness and love as das Liebe; the world, nature and the tremendous beauty of everything, all that splendor, as das Schöne. At such moments I don't think about all the misery, but about the beauty that still remains. This is where Mother and I differ greatly. Her advice in the face of melancholy is: "Think about all the suffering in the world and be thankful you're not part of it." My advice is: "Go outside, to the country, enjoy the sun and all nature has to offer. Go outside and try to recapture the happiness within yourself; think of all the beauty in yourself and in everything around you and be happy." I don't think Mother's advice can be right, because what are you supposed to do if you become part of the suffering? You'd be completely lost. On the contrary, beauty remains, even in misfortune. If you just look for it, you discover more and more happiness and regain your balance. A person who's happy will make others happy; a person who has courage and faith will never die in misery!
Anne Frank (Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl - Multiple Critical Perspectives)
Melony put herself straight to bed without her dinner. Mrs. Grogan, worried about her, went to Melony’s bed and felt her forehead, which was feverish, but Mrs. Grogan could not coax Melony to drink anything. All Melony said was, ‘He broke his promise.’ Later, she said, ‘Homer Wells has left St. Cloud’s.’ ‘You have a little temperature, dear,’ said Mrs. Grogan, but when Homer Wells didn’t come to read Jane Eyre aloud that evening, Mrs. Grogan started paying closer attention. She allowed Melony to read to the girls that evening; Melony’s voice was oddly flat and passionless. Melony’s reading from Jane Eyre depressed Mrs. Grogan – especially when she read this part: …it is madness in all women to let a secret love kindle within them, which, if unreturned and unknown, must devour the life that feeds it… Why, the girl didn’t bat an eye! Mrs. Grogan observed.
John Irving (The Cider House Rules)
Representation matters. It matters that you sit in an audience and see yourself onstage. It matters that a company who sells to a multiethnic, multicultural world works to bring every voice in so that they consider as many perspectives as possible. Black, white, Latino, Asian, old, young, gay, straight, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, differently abled, plus-size, petite—everybody should be at your table. Everybody should be on your stage. Everybody should be on your staff. Everybody should be invited to your kid’s birthday party. Everybody should be welcome in your church. Everybody should be invited over for dinner. Every single woman you know and every single one you don’t could benefit from the truth that she is capable of something great. How is she ever going to believe that if nobody sets an example? How is she ever going to believe that if nobody cares enough to see it in her and speak the truth aloud?
Rachel Hollis (Girl, Stop Apologizing: A Shame-Free Plan for Embracing and Achieving Your Goals (Girl, Wash Your Face))
I watched mesmerized as Sloane Walton made a snow angel. I pressed my palm to the cool glass. Take care of my girls. I heard Simon’s words as clearly as if he’d spoken them aloud. It wasn’t his fault. He didn’t know the effect his daughter had on me. How dangerous she was to me. How fatal I could be to her.
Lucy Score (Things We Left Behind (Knockemout, #3))
Hmmm," he said, "Lauren Elizabeth Danner.Elizabeth is a beautiful name and so is Lauren. They suit you." Unable to endure the sweet torment of having him flirt with her, Lauren said repressively, "I was named after two maiden aunts.One of them had a squint and the other had warts." Nick ignored that and continued aloud. "Color of eyes,blue." He regarded her over the top of the file, his gray eyes intimate and teasing. "They are definitely blue.A man could lose himself in those eyes of yours-they're gorgeous." "My right eye used to wobble unless I wore my glasses," Lauren informed him blithely. "They had to operate on it." "A little girl with wobbly blue eyes and glasses on her nose," he reflected with a slow grin. "I'll bet you were cute." "I looked studious,not cute.
Judith McNaught (Double Standards)
Do you hesitate to admit your dreams aloud because you're nervous about others making fun of you or judging you for your choices?
Rachel Hollis (Girl Wash your Face)
Someday I’ll marry that girl,” she said aloud. “It might be good for her.” And: “Probably not, though.
Tamsyn Muir (Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb, #2))
A dead man passed us in a hearse heaped with blooms, followed by two carriages with drawn blinds and by more cheerful carriages for friends. The friends looked out at us with the tragic eyes and short upper lips of south-eastern Europe, and I was glad that the sight of Gatsby’s splendid car was included in their somber holiday. As we crossed Blackwell’s Island a limousine passed us, driven by a white chauffeur, in which sat three modish Negroes, two bucks and a girl. I laughed aloud as the yolks of their eyeballs rolled toward us in haughty rivalry.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby)
In Loving Memory Winifred Foster Jackson Dear Wife Dear Mother 1870--1948 “So,” said Tuck to himself. “Two years. She’s been gone two years.” He stood up and looked around, embarrassed, trying to clear the lump from his throat. But there was no one to see him. The cemetery was very quiet. In the branches of a willow behind him, a red-winged blackbird chirped. Tuck wiped his eyes hastily. Then he straightened his jacket again and drew up his hand in a brief salute. “Good girl,” he said aloud. And then he turned and left the cemetery, walking quickly. Later, as he and Mae rolled out of Treegap, Mae said softly, without looking at him, “She’s gone?” Tuck nodded. “She’s gone,” he answered. There was a long moment of silence between them, and then Mae said, “Poor Jesse.” “He knowed it, though,” said Tuck. “At least, he knowed she wasn’t coming. We all knowed that, long time ago.” “Just the same,” said Mae. She sighed. And then she sat up a little straighter. “Well, where to now, Tuck? No need to come back here no more.” “That’s so,” said Tuck. “Let’s just head on out this way. We’ll locate something.” “All right,” said Mae. And then she put a hand on his arm and pointed. “Look out for that toad.” Tuck had seen it, too. He reined in the horse and climbed down from the wagon. The toad was squatting in the middle of the road, quite unconcerned. In the other lane, a pickup truck rattled by, and against the breeze it made, the toad shut its eyes tightly. But it did not move. Tuck waited till the truck had passed, and then he picked up the toad and carried it to the weeds along the road’s edge. “Durn fool thing must think it’s going to live forever,” he said to Mae. And soon they were rolling on again, leaving Treegap behind, and as they went, the tinkling little melody of a music box drifted out behind them and was lost at last far down the road.
Natalie Babbitt (Tuck Everlasting)
Smallpox,' ' Zach read aloud when the page was passed to him. 'It was eradicated by the nineteen eighties,' Pip said. 'Oi, no time travel.' Jamie whacked her on the head with his master booklet.
Holly Jackson (Kill Joy : A Good Girl's Guide to Murder 4)
Smallpox,' ' Zach read aloud when the page was passed to him. 'It was eradicated by the nineteen eighties,' Pip said. 'Oi, no time travel.' Jamie whacked her on the head with his master booklet.
Holly Jackson (Kill Joy (A Good Girl's Guide to Murder, #0.5))
transcribe experience so other people would understand. The work of telling is essential, and it is not enough. There is always the danger that the energy of the injustice will exhaust itself in the revelation—that we will be horrified but remain unchanged. The reason for this, I suspect, is that these are stories we all already know. A girl was assaulted. A boy was molested. The producer, the judge, the bishop, the boss. To hear these stories spoken aloud is jarring, but not because it causes us to reconsider who we are and how we are organized. It is only when power is threatened that power responds.
Lacy Crawford (Notes on a Silencing)
Beyond this sense, however, of swift transient passage, was the worse, the frightful conviction, of perhaps being in reality no more than Natalie Waite, college girl, daughter to Arnold, and unable to brush away the solidity of this world but forced to deal with it as actual and dreary. Yet then--why, if this were true, the sudden sharp sympathetic picture of the white walls and the nurse coming closer? Why the graphically remembered room with the iron bedstead, the sure knowledge of the moment to slip the poison into the cup, the remembered pain? Why, above all, the constant unusual shock of the sound of her own name said aloud?
Shirley Jackson (Hangsaman)
I… that took a lot of guts, what you did today.” “Can’t really pretend it didn’t happen anymore, right?” And being a better person doesn’t mean hiding from or lying about who I used to be. “So much of what you talked about is shit that happens in school very day, Aria. The gossip, the text messages, the comments. People do it all the time. Everyone does it. I’ve done it. Doesn’t make it okay but… I can see how it spiralled out of control like that.” I shrug. “I figured, if my story makes people stop and think about what their words could do to a person, then I should tell it right?” “Right.” He nods slowly, his eyes roaming my face. “I miss you,” I don’t mean to say it aloud, but it slips out anyway. He offers me a sad smile. “I miss you, too, AJ.
K.A. Tucker (Be the Girl)
My epic,” said Emily, diligently devouring plum cake, “is about a very beautiful high-born girl who was stolen away from her real parents when she was a baby and brought up in a woodcutter’s hut.” “One av the seven original plots in the world,” murmured Father Cassidy. “What?” “Nothing. Just a bad habit av thinking aloud. Go on.” “She had a lover of high degree but his family did not want him to marry her because she was only a woodcutter’s daughter—” “Another of the seven plots — excuse me.” “ — so they sent him away to the Holy Land on a crusade and word came back that he was killed and then Editha — her name was Editha — went into a convent—” Emily paused for a bite of plum cake and Father Cassidy took up the strain. “And now her lover comes back very much alive, though covered with Paynim scars, and the secret av her birth is discovered through the dying confession av the old nurse and the birthmark on her arm.” “How did you know?” gasped Emily in amazement. “Oh, I guessed it — I’m a good guesser.
L.M. Montgomery (The Complete Emily Starr Trilogy: Emily of New Moon / Emily Climbs . Emily's Quest)
I made myself say it out love: I might always be alone. It sounded less overwhelming against the noise of the breaking waves. I laughed. Fuck off, I thought, I am done feeling bad. And then aloud: I can do whatever I want. Just then I remembered seeing Patti Smith, two summers before, reading an old poem at the Brooklyn Bridge Park, the city aflame behind her in the setting summer sun. I am gonna get out of here, she said, as if she were once again that young girl who'd written those lines decades ago. She was going to get on that train and go to New York City. She was never going to return, no never. She was going to travel light. How I loved that. Oh, watch me now, she'd said. As if she was about to perform the world's greatest magic trip. Oh, watch me now, I thought.
Glynnis MacNicol (No One Tells You This)
At first she did nothing, waiting for her husband to wake, which he did not, because that wasn’t a thing he ever did. She waited longer than she usually did, waited and waited, the boy wailing while she lay as still as a corpse, patiently waiting for the day when her corpse self would miraculously be reanimated and taken into the Kingdom of the Chosen, where it would create an astonishing art installation composed of many aesthetically interesting beds. The corpse would have unlimited child-care and be able to hang out and go to show openings and drink corpse wine with the other corpses whenever it wanted, because that was heaven. That was it. She lay there as long as she could without making a sound, a movement. Her child’s screams fanned a flame of rage that flickered in her chest. That single, white-hot light at the center of the darkness of herself—that was the point of origin from which she birthed something new, from which all women do. You light a fire early in your girlhood. You stoke it and tend it. You protect it at all costs. You don’t let it rage into a mountain of light, because that’s not becoming of a girl. You keep it secret. You let it burn. You look into the eyes of other girls and see their fires flickering there, offer conspiratorial nods, never speak aloud of a near-unbearable heat, a growing conflagration. You tend the flame because if you don’t you’re stuck, in the cold, on your own, doomed to seasonal layers, doomed to practicality, doomed to this is just the way things are, doomed to settling and understanding and reasoning and agreeing and seeing it another way and seeing it his way and seeing it from all the other ways but your own. And upon hearing the boy’s scream, the particular pitch and slice, she saw the flame behind her closed eyes. For a moment, it quivered on unseen air, then, at once, lengthened and thinned, paused, and dropped with a whump into her chest, then deeper into her belly, setting her aflame
Rachel Yoder (Nightbitch)
He had obviously forgotten my name already as he picked up my place card, patting his pockets helplessly for an absent pair of specs, before holding it at arm's length. "GUEST OF ADAM HARRIS," he read aloud." "It's a bit of a mouthful, but my friends just call me Guest," I replied.
Clare Chambers (Bright Girls)
The feel of my mother’s warmth behind me as she read is one of the first things I can remember—the safe anchor of her body and the music of her read-aloud voice the ocean on which my small consciousness sailed into power through stories of music and brave maidens, feasts and castles, family and home.
Sarah Clarkson (Book Girl: A Journey through the Treasures and Transforming Power of a Reading Life)
Makes no difference,” he said, with his intuitive knowledge of my thoughts. “No difference at all how your first marriage was. This is my marriage, and I want my wife in my bed.” I laughed aloud and snuggled back into his arms. “It’s where I want to be,” I confessed. “Why would I ever want to be anywhere else?
Philippa Gregory (The Other Boleyn Girl (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels #9))
The best part of being a nanny, Katya thought, was reading children’s books aloud to enraptured children like Tricia, for no one had read such books aloud to her when she’d been a little girl. There hadn’t been such books in the Spivak household on County Line Road, nor would there have been any time for such interludes.
Joyce Carol Oates (A Fair Maiden)
Her parents noticed, when Dominika turned five, that the little girl had a prodigious memory. She could recite lines from Pushkin, identify the concertos of Tchaikovsky. And when music was played, Dominika would dance barefoot around the Oriental carpet in the living room, perfectly in time with the notes, twirling and jumping, perfectly in balance, her eyes gleaming, her hands flashing. Vassily and Nina looked at each other, and her mother asked Dominika how she had learned all this. “I follow the colors,” said the little girl. “What do you mean, ‘the colors’?” asked her mother. Dominika gravely explained that when the music played, or when her father read aloud to her, colors would fill the room. Different colors, some bright, some dark, sometimes they “jumped in the air” and all Dominika had to do was follow them. It was how she could remember so much. When she danced, she leapt over bars of bright blue, followed shimmering spots of red on the floor. The parents looked at each other again. “I like red and blue and purple,” said Dominika. “When Batushka reads, or when Mamulya plays, they are beautiful.” “And when Mama is cross with you?” asked Vassily. “Yellow, I don’t like the yellow,” said the little girl, turning the pages of a book. “And the black cloud. I do not like that.
Jason Matthews (Red Sparrow (Red Sparrow Trilogy, #1))
ROSE DAY POEM: Rose.. if it is.. for the one whom you miss.. and you want to say a lot.. till now that you have not! - Then just go and dare to say.. for that moment is today.. beyond the earth and sky above.. Give it to the one whom you love!! - And sing your heart out.. to the universe aloud.. - O girl, O girl, O.. O.. girl.. you be mine.. You are more than this rose to me.. You be my.. Valentine. Just be mine.. O O.. Valentine!!!
Vikrmn: CA Vikram Verma (Guru with Guitar)
Seconds before, we were a boy and a girl standing next to each other. The distance between our bodies was out of habit and not out of lack of curiosity. His movement was swift and unexpected. I remembered the smell of his clothes--his mom, like mine, must have used Tide--as the first of the atmospheric changes. The second was the instant warming of the air temperature as his breath came near. The third was that it became suddenly dark. As Wade pulled away, he said my name aloud for no one but himself.
Monique Truong (Bitter in the Mouth)
I never suspected you had a sense of humor,” she mused aloud, studying his face as if he were a fascinating puzzle to be figured out. “See? Hardly ten minutes into the night and I am already learning fabulous things about you.” “Imagine what will happen in an hour,” he said. “That sounded suspiciously liberal to me,” she rejoined slyly, reaching to wind her arms around his neck. “Did I mention that you look like you just stepped off a pirate ship? This outfit is very . . . roguish.” “Roguish?” “‘Roguish’ is a word from the English language,” she lectured. “It means . . . to be like a rogue. In your case, to be in the style of a rogue. Roguish.” “I know what it means, Neliss. I do not believe I have ever heard myself described in such a way before. I shall have to take your word on that.” He reached up to push back some of the heavy fall of her hair. “You always wear dresses like this, and almost never bind your hair. Do not take this as a complaint, but I was wondering why that is.” “I like dresses. I never quite took to the idea of skirts above the ankle. I guess I am an old-fashioned eighteenth-century girl.” “I see. And just when, exactly, should I begin to look for those pigs that will be flying by?” “You know, you sit there and accuse me of having a smart mouth?” “Well, you were wondering what part of you was going to show up in me,” he rejoined. “Oh. Ha ha. Your stellar wit has charmed me straight to my toes,” was her dry reply. “In any event,” he continued, ignoring her sarcasm, “your style suits you quite well. It suits me as well.
Jacquelyn Frank (Gideon (Nightwalkers, #2))
I do not want children, I whispered. This was my deepest secret, but I'd never spoken it aloud. Good women had babies. Good women wanted babies. It was pressed upon every girl precisely what good women did and did not do. We lugged those dictates around like temple stones. A good woman was modest. She was quiet. She covered her head when she went out. She didn't speak with men. She tended her domestic tasks. She obeyed and served her husband. She was faithful to him. Above all, she gave him children. Better yet, sons. Had he ever prodded me to be a good woman? Not once.
Sue Monk Kidd (The Book of Longings)
One of the best things about owning a brain is how you often seem to phase out of normalcy and briefly see your culture with a weirdly objective frame of mind. At some point every child realizes money is made up of slips of paper with no intrinsic value, and wonders why aloud. So, too, will children ask adults what’s up with shaking hands, or putting your fork on one side of the plate, or saying “Bless you” after a sneeze. Parents apply the glue that holds a culture together when explaining to a child that his socks must match, or that punctuality is paramount, or that picking his nose in public is a terrible habit. When a parent tells a boy he shouldn’t play with dolls, or a girl to wait for a boy to ask her to the prom, they are enforcing norms. When a kid asks, “But, why?” she is rightfully bringing to the attention of the adult world that all this stuff is just made up and mostly arbitrary nonsense often clung to for some long-forgotten reason. That feeling you sometimes get when you snap out of your culture for a moment, when the operating system crashes and slowly reboots, has been the subject of literature and drama for thousands of years.
David McRaney (You Are Now Less Dumb: How to Conquer Mob Mentality, How to Buy Happiness, and All the Other Ways to Outsmart Yourself)
She opened the door of the room and went into the corridor, and then she began her wanderings. It was a long corridor and it branched into other corridors and it led her up short flights of steps which mounted to others again. There were doors and doors, and there were pictures on the walls. Sometimes they were pictures of dark, curious landscapes, but oftenest they were portraits of men and women in queer, grand costumes made of satin and velvet. She found herself in one long gallery whose walls were covered with these portraits. She had never thought there could be so many in any house. She walked slowly down this place and stared at the faces which also seemed to stare at her. She felt as if they were wondering what a little girl from India was doing in their house. Some were pictures of children—little girls in thick satin frocks which reached to their feet and stood out about them, and boys with puffed sleeves and lace collars and long hair, or with big ruffs around their necks. She always stopped to look at the children, and wonder what their names were, and where they had gone, and why they wore such odd clothes. There was a stiff, plain little girl rather like herself. She wore a green brocade dress and held a green parrot on her finger. Her eyes had a sharp, curious look. "Where do you live now?" said Mary aloud to her. "I wish you were here." Surely no other little girl ever spent such a queer morning. It seemed as if there was no one in all the huge rambling house but her own small self, wandering about up-stairs and down, through narrow passages and wide ones, where it seemed to her that no one but herself had ever walked. Since so many rooms had been built, people must have lived in them, but it all seemed so empty that she could not quite believe it true.
Frances Hodgson Burnett (The Secret Garden)
For as a girl she had learned how to caress Chopin’s phrases, which with the inordinate sinuous length of their graceful necks are so fluent, flexible and tactile, which seem to be meandering off-course, far away from their original direction, in an aimless tentative search for their proper place, straying anywhere but towards the destination where one might have expected to feel their final touch, but which are only feigning these fanciful detours so as to return more purposefully, more accurately, more knowingly, and, as though ringing cut-glass echoes that make one want to cry aloud, strike home into one’s unsuspecting heart.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way)
I read aloud from my phone. “‘A cappuccino with low-quality milk … the only good things is the kindness of the bartenders…’” “Are you reading the online reviews?” “Of course. This is a good one. ‘What is gruesome is the disorganization and rudeness of the staff.’ And here’s another. ‘Business lunch with pork sandwich, dirty toilets, and hallucinating prices.’” Elisa let out a laugh. “Internet translations have made Italians sound like lunatics.” “Or like a nation with a head injury. Here’s my favorite one: ‘The collation leaves it to be desired and the girl was alone and in trouble to manage everything. Sandwich was inexplicable.
Dominic Smith (Return to Valetto)
To her horror, Henry threw his head back and roared with laughter. “Sire, please, we’re in a chapel.” He snorted. “God doesn’t mind if we laugh aloud. He created us in His own image, remember.” “Exactly. Chaste, pure, contained, selfless. All the things I was before I met him.” “Oh, my dear girl. God is so much more than that.” Henry put his powerful hand over hers. “Palmer hasn’t changed you. He’s allowed you to be yourself, allowed you to be like your father, as well as your mother. Yes, you’ve had to do some hard, hard things. But so have I. And sometimes we have to ask God for forgiveness for what we’ve done. The glorious thing is, He grants it. It’s what He died for.
E.M. Powell (The Fifth Knight (The Fifth Knight #1))
I do not want children," I whispered. This was my deeper secret, but I'd never spoken it aloud. Good women had babies. Good women wanted babies. It was pressed upon every girl precisely what good women did and did not do. We lugged those dictates around like temple stones. A good woman was modest. She was quiet. She covered her head when she went out. She didn't speak with men. She tended her domestic tasks. She obeyed and served her husband. She was faithful to him. Above all, she gave him children. Better yet, sons. I waited for Jesus to respond, but he dipped his trowel in the mortal and smoothed it over the stones. Had he ever prodded me to be a good woman? Not once.
Sue Monk Kidd (The Book of Longings)
The baby girl who lifted the flaps of Rod Campbell's Dear Zoo becomes the toddler charmed by Ludwig Behmelman's Madeline who turns into the sixth grader listening open-mouthed to Mark Halperin's A Kingdom Far and Clear who grows up to be the young woman swept away by Leo Tolstoy and the beautiful, ill-fated heroine of Anna Karenina. Each book makes straight the path for the next, opening out into sunlit literary meadows where, over time, young people will encounter beautiful writing and characters and scenes that may have been known, loved, and remembered by generations long since past. For the child, or teenager, or anyone else for that matter, getting these tickets to arcadia is a matter of simplicity. All they have to do is listen.
Meghan Cox Gurdon (The Enchanted Hour: The Miraculous Power of Reading Aloud in the Age of Distraction)
So then he tried saying the grass is green and the sky is blue and so to propitiate the austere spirit of poetry whom still, though at a great distance, he could not help reverencing. 'The sky is blue,' he said, 'the grass is green.' Looking up, he saw that, on the contrary, the sky is like the veils which a thousand Madonnas have let fall from their hair; and the grass fleets and darkens like a flight of girls fleeing the embraces of hairy satyrs from enchanted woods. 'Upon my word,' he said (for he had fallen into the bad habit of speaking aloud), 'I don't see that one's more true than another. Both are utterly false.' And he despaired of being able to solve the problem of what poetry is and what truth is and fell into a deep dejection.
Virginia Woolf (Orlando)
I was through arguing. My real concern was with Gavin. Lifting my eyes I considered his face—perfectly rounded cheeks, a confident chin, big brown eyes balanced evenly over a gently sloped nose, all framed by a mess of dark curls. My heart sank at his beauty. A boy like him would never really have anything to do with a girl like me. 'Why are you here?' I asked. I knew my tone sounded dismal. It was impossible to disguise how I felt. 'Because I want to be,' he answered. 'You want to be here? Really?' 'Well, yes,' he said. His face screwed up, confused. His next words came across as defensive. 'I’m the key keeper. I can go anywhere I wish to. You can’t stop me, Annabelle.' 'Stop you? I don’t want to stop you,' I said. 'I just thought that... I mean, I didn’t think that…' It was hard to voice my fear aloud.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Dandelions: The Disappearance of Annabelle Fancher)
Tonight,” said Mack Nuggett, “These feathery beasts Will be chopped up and roasted For Thanksgiving feasts.” The children stood still As tears filled their eyes, Then they clamored aloud In a chorus of cries. “Oh dear,” cried Mack Nuggett, “Now what shall I do?” So he dashed to the well, And the teacher went, too. And they fetched some water Fresh from the ground, In hopes that a swig Might calm everyone down. And when they returned To quiet the matter, The children were calmer (And mysteriously fatter!). The boys and girls drank up Their drinks in the hay, Then thanked old Mack Nuggett And waddled away. They limped to the school bus All huffing and puffing-- It’s not easy to walk With hot turkey stuffing. And then, as the school bus drove off in the night, Mack Nuggett looked ‘round--not a turkey in sight!
Dav Pilkey ('Twas The Night Before Thanksgiving)
With each passing day soccer carves a larger scoop of my life. I love it for what it gives me: praise, affection, and, above all, attention. When I'm on the field I don't have to plead to be noticed, either silently or aloud; it is a natural by-product of my talent. I loathe it for the same reason, terrified that soccer is the only worthwile thing about me, that stripping it from my identity might make me disappear. My future teammate and friend Mia Hamm will one day offer this advice: "Somewhere behind the athlete you've become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back... play for her." I am not, and never will be, that little girl. Already I know I'm incapable of falling in love with the game itself--only with the validation that comes from mastering it, from bending it to my will.
Abby Wambach (Forward: A Memoir)
Look Jane!” Brenda nudged her daughter. “Look who’s over there!” “Damn!” Jane had smudged the fingernail she’d been painting. A tiny frown of exasperation marred her pretty face. Then she brightened as she saw him – Richard from accounts, jostling at the bar with the rest of the lunchtime crowd. “What’s he doing here?” she wondered aloud. “Wouldn’t have thought this was his scene.” “Don’t be silly!” Brenda admonished. “It’s a hot day. Lots of people fancy a cold lager with their lunch. It’s perfectly natural.” She sometimes despaired at her daughter’s lack of insight. How could such a pretty girl be so empty-headed? And when would Jane ever find a steady boyfriend? Brenda had high hopes for Richard in this direction. He was old enough to be a good influence; brilliantly clever; in line for promotion – he would be perfect for Jane. “Call him over, Mum!” Jane suggested excitedly.
Bernie Morris (sweets for my sweet)
Eh? How 'bout that?" Bill nudged her. "Did I promise to show you love or did I promise to show you love?" "Sure,they seem like they're in love." Luce shrugged. "But-" "But what?Do you have any idea how painful that is? Look at that guy. He makes getting inked look like being caressed by a soft breeze." Luce squirmed on the branch. "Is that the lesson here? Pain equals love?" "You tell me," Bill said. "It may surprise you to hear this,but the ladies aren't exactly banging down Bill's door." "I mean,if I tattooed Daniel's same on my body would that mean I loved him more than I already do?" "It's a symbol,Luce." Bill let out a raspy sigh. "You're being too literal. Think about it this way: Daniel is the first good-looking boy LuLu has ever seen. Until he washed ashore a few months ago, this girl's whole world was her father and a few fat natives." "She's Miranda," Luce said, remembering the love story from The Tempest, which she'd read in her tenth-grade Shakespeare seminar. "How very civilized of you!" Bill pursed his lips with approval. "They are liek Ferdinand and Miranda: The handsome foreigner shipwrecks on her shores-" "So,of course it was love at first sight for LuLu," Luce murmured. This was what she was afraid of: the same thoughtless,automatic love that had bothered her in Helston. "Right," Bill said. "She didn't have a choice but to fall for him.But what's interesting here is Daniel. You see, he didn't have to teach her to craft a woven sail, or gain her father's trust by producing a season's worth of fish to cure,or exhibit C"-Bill pointed at the lovers on the beach-"agree to tattoo his whole body according to her local custom.It would have been enough if Daniel had just shown up.LuLu would have loved him anyway." "He's doing it because-" Luce thought aloud. "Because he wants to earn her love.Because otherwise,he would just be taking advantage of their curse. Because no matter what kind of cycle they're bound to,his love for her is...true.
Lauren Kate (Passion (Fallen, #3))
The ghosts of women once girls Somewhere a little girl is reading aloud in the middle of a dirt road. she smiles at the sound of her own voice escaping the spine of the book. she feeds her hunger to know herself. She has not yet been taught to dim, she sits with the stars beneath her feet, a constellation of things to come. as if a swallowed moon, she glimmers. Her head wrap rolls out in a gutter, bare feet scat the earth, the ghosts of women once girls make bridge of the dust dancing behind her, she decorates the ground in dimples she stomps suffering out the spirit hooves drumming the earth in circles she holds gladness in her mouth like a secret teased out of a giggle joy like her sadness overflows she is not the opinions of others she is of visions and imagination somewhere a little girl is reading aloud in the middle of a dirt road. she smiles at the sound of her own voice escaping the spine of the book. She is a room full of listening, lending herself to her own words somewhere a deep remembering of what was, she survives all.
Aja Monet (My Mother Was a Freedom Fighter)
Finally, it was all finished. September was quite proud of herself, and we may be proud of her, too, for certainly I have never made a boat so quickly, and I daresay only one or two of you have ever pulled off such a trick. All she lacked was a sail. September thought for a good while, considering what Lye, the soap golem, had said: "Even if you've taken off every stitch of clothing, you will still have your secrets, your history, your true name. It's hard to be really naked. You have to work hard at it. Just getting into a bath isn't being naked, not really. It's just showing skin. And foxes and bears have skin, too, so I shan't be ashamed if they're not." 'Well, I shan't be! My dress, my sail!' cried September aloud, and wriggled out of her orange dress. She tied the sleeves to the top of the mast and the tips of the skirt to the bottom. The wind puffed it out obligingly. She took off the Marquess's dreadful shoes and wedged them between the sceptres. There she stood, her newly shorn hair flying in every direction, naked and fierce, with the tide coming in.
Catherynne M. Valente (The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Fairyland, #1))
I still have no choice but to bring out Minerva instead.” “But Minerva doesn’t care about men,” young Charlotte said helpfully. “She prefers dirt and rocks.” “It’s called geology,” Minerva said. “It’s a science.” “It’s certain spinsterhood, is what it is! Unnatural girl. Do sit straight in your chair, at least.” Mrs. Highwood sighed and fanned harder. To Susanna, she said, “I despair of her, truly. This is why Diana must get well, you see. Can you imagine Minerva in Society?” Susanna bit back a smile, all too easily imagining the scene. It would probably resemble her own debut. Like Minerva, she had been absorbed in unladylike pursuits, and the object of her female relations’ oft-voiced despair. At balls, she’d been that freckled Amazon in the corner, who would have been all too happy to blend into the wallpaper, if only her hair color would have allowed it. As for the gentlemen she’d met…not a one of them had managed to sweep her off her feet. To be fair, none of them had tried very hard. She shrugged off the awkward memories. That time was behind her now. Mrs. Highwood’s gaze fell on a book at the corner of the table. “I am gratified to see you keep Mrs. Worthington close at hand.” “Oh yes,” Susanna replied, reaching for the blue, leatherbound tome. “You’ll find copies of Mrs. Worthington’s Wisdom scattered everywhere throughout the village. We find it a very useful book.” “Hear that, Minerva? You would do well to learn it by heart.” When Minerva rolled her eyes, Mrs. Highwood said, “Charlotte, open it now. Read aloud the beginning of Chapter Twelve.” Charlotte reached for the book and opened it, then cleared her throat and read aloud in a dramatic voice. “’Chapter Twelve. The perils of excessive education. A young lady’s intellect should be in all ways like her undergarments. Present, pristine, and imperceptible to the casual observer.’” Mrs. Highwood harrumphed. “Yes. Just so. Hear and believe it, Minerva. Hear and believe every word. As Miss Finch says, you will find that book very useful.” Susanna took a leisurely sip of tea, swallowing with it a bitter lump of indignation. She wasn’t an angry or resentful person, as a matter of course. But once provoked, her passions required formidable effort to conceal. That book provoked her, no end. Mrs. Worthington’s Wisdom for Young Ladies was the bane of sensible girls the world over, crammed with insipid, damaging advice on every page. Susanna could have gleefully crushed its pages to powder with a mortar and pestle, labeled the vial with a skull and crossbones, and placed it on the highest shelf in her stillroom, right beside the dried foxglove leaves and deadly nightshade berries. Instead, she’d made it her mission to remove as many copies as possible from circulation. A sort of quarantine. Former residents of the Queen’s Ruby sent the books from all corners of England. One couldn’t enter a room in Spindle Cove without finding a copy or three of Mrs. Worthington’s Wisdom. And just as Susanna had told Mrs. Highwood, they found the book very useful indeed. It was the perfect size for propping a window open. It also made an excellent doorstop or paperweight. Susanna used her personal copies for pressing herbs. Or occasionally, for target practice. She motioned to Charlotte. “May I?” Taking the volume from the girl’s grip, she raised the book high. Then, with a brisk thwack, she used it to crush a bothersome gnat. With a calm smile, she placed the book on a side table. “Very useful indeed.
Tessa Dare (A Night to Surrender (Spindle Cove, #1))
At the end of the oak-lined avenue, the girls came to a weather-stained loggia of stone. Its four handsomely carved pillars rose to support a balcony over which vines trailed. Steps led to the upper part. After mounting to the balcony, Nancy and her friends obtained a fine view of the nearby gardens. They had been laid out in formal sections, each one bounded by a stone wall or an un-trimmed hedge. Here and there were small circular pools, now heavy with lichens and moss, and fountains with leaf-filled basins. Over the treetops, about half a mile away, the girls could see two stone towers. “That’s the castle,” said George. Amid the wild growth, Nancy spotted a bridge. “Let’s go that way,” she suggested, starting down from the balcony. In a few minutes the trio had crossed the rickety wooden span. Before them lay a slippery moss-grown path. “The Haunted Walk,” Nancy read aloud the name on a rustic sign. “Why not try another approach?” Bess said with a shiver. “This garden looks spooky enough without deliberately inviting a meeting with ghosts!” “Oh, come on!” Nancy laughed, taking her friend firmly by the arm. “It’s only a name. Besides, the walk may lead to something interesting.
Carolyn Keene (The Clue in the Crumbling Wall (Nancy Drew, #22))
Her parents noticed, when Dominika turned five, that the little girl had a prodigious memory. She could recite lines from Pushkin, identify the concertos of Tchaikovsky. And when music was played, Dominika would dance barefoot around the Oriental carpet in the living room, perfectly in time with the notes, twirling and jumping, perfectly in balance, her eyes gleaming, her hands flashing. Vassily and Nina looked at each other, and her mother asked Dominika how she had learned all this. “I follow the colors,” said the little girl. “What do you mean, ‘the colors’?” asked her mother. Dominika gravely explained that when the music played, or when her father read aloud to her, colors would fill the room. Different colors, some bright, some dark, sometimes they “jumped in the air” and all Dominika had to do was follow them. It was how she could remember so much. When she danced, she leapt over bars of bright blue, followed shimmering spots of red on the floor. The parents looked at each other again. “I like red and blue and purple,” said Dominika. “When Batushka reads, or when Mamulya plays, they are beautiful.” “And when Mama is cross with you?” asked Vassily. “Yellow, I don’t like the yellow,” said the little girl, turning the pages of a book. “And the black cloud. I do not like that.
Jason Matthews (Red Sparrow (Red Sparrow Trilogy #1))
Do you know, I was rather excited about this whole weekend, and now I can't wait to get home. Feed the cats, write school papers. That sort of thing." Tabitha said nothing. She had no home to return to. "Don't you want to go home? That's right, though, you said you would be leaving the country." "Just my parents are leaving. I'm orphanage bound," Tabitha told him, studying the kitchen tiles. "I'm to be a washer girl at Augustus Home." "A washer girl?" Oliver blinked, incredulous. "You can't mean it." Tabitha kept her eyes focused on the red squares, observing how they fit neatly together to form a single unit of floor. Her parents had taken away her ability to fit in anywhere. She felt the boiling sensation in her belly again, and she finally recognized it. It wasn't sadness or fear or guilt. It was anger, and it wanted very badly to be released. "No, I don't believe you." Oliver shook his head. "Nobody is that horrible." "They are," Tabitha affirmed quietly. "They are horrible, horrible people and even worse parents." She stared at him in wonder, letting a hot rush course through her. "Do you know that's the first time I've said that aloud?" Her heartbeat quickened. "And I think perhaps they deserve my disfavor. They've earned it, the same way I tried for years to earn their love.
Jessica Lawson (Nooks & Crannies)
This week we'll be learning about key elements of high quality picture books. Using the award winner lists in our course materials, select one picture book and share why it received its award. For example, Abuela is listed in the 100 Picture Books Everyone Should Know. According to Publishers Weekly, this is why it's so good: "In this tasty trip, Rosalba is "always going places" with her grandmother--abuela . During one of their bird-feeding outings to the park, Rosalba wonders aloud, "What if I could fly?" Thus begins an excursion through the girl's imagination as she soars high above the tall buildings and buses of Manhattan, over the docks and around the Statue of Liberty with Abuela in tow. Each stop of the glorious journey evokes a vivid memory for Rosalba's grandmother and reveals a new glimpse of the woman's colorful ethnic origins. Dorros's text seamlessly weaves Spanish words and phrases into the English narrative, retaining a dramatic quality rarely found in bilingual picture books. Rosalba's language is simple and melodic, suggesting the graceful images of flight found on each page. Kleven's ( Ernst ) mixed-media collages are vibrantly hued and intricately detailed, the various blended textures reminiscent of folk art forms. Those searching for solid multicultural material would be well advised to embark.
B.F. Skinner
He stared at her in insolent silence, unable to believe the alluring, impulsive girl he remembered had become this coolly aloof, self-possessed young woman. Even with her dusty clothes and the smear of dirt on her cheek, Elizabeth Cameron was strikingly beautiful, but she’d changed so much that-except for the eyes-he scarcely recognized her. One thing hadn’t changed: She was still a schemer and a liar. Straightening abruptly from his stance in the doorway, Ian walked forward. “I’ve had enough of this charade, Miss Cameron. No one invited you here, and you damn well know it.” Blinded with wrath and humiliation, Elizabeth groped in her reticule and snatched out the handwritten letter her uncle had received inviting Elizabeth to join Ian there. Marching up to him, she slapped the invitation against his chest. Instinctively he caught it but didn’t open it. “Explain that,” she commanded, backing away and then waiting. “Another note, I’ll wager,” he drawled sarcastically, thinking of the night he’d gone to the greenhouse to meet her and recalling what a fool he’d been about her. Elizabeth stood beside the table, determined to have the satisfaction of hearing his explanation before she left-not that anything he said could make her stay. When he showed no sign of opening it, she turned furiously to Jake, who was sorely disappointed that Ian was deliberately chasing off two females who could surely be persuaded to do the cooking if they stayed. “Make him read it aloud!” she ordered the startled Jake. “Now, Ian,” Jake said, thinking of his empty stomach and the bleak future that lay ahead for it if the ladies went away, “why don’t you jes’ read that there little note, like the lady asked?” When Ian Thornton ignored the older man’s suggestion, Elizabeth lost control of her temper. Without thinking what she was actually doing, she reached out and snatched the pistol off the table, primed it, cocked it, and leveled it at Ian Thornton’s broad chest. “Read that note!” Jake, whose concern was still on his stomach, held up his hands as if the gun were pointed at him. “Ian, it could be a misunderstanding, you know, and it’s not nice to be rude to these ladies. Why don’t you read it, and then we’ll all sit down and have a nice”-he inclined his head meaningfully to the sack of provisions on the table-“supper.” “I don’t need to read it,” Ian snapped. “The last time I read a note from Lady Cameron I met her in a greenhouse and got shot in the arm for my trouble.” “Are you implying I invited you into that greenhouse?” Elizabeth scoffed furiously. With an impatient sigh Ian said, “Since you’re obviously determined to enact a Cheltenham tragedy, let’s get it over with before you’re on your way.” “Do you deny you sent me a note?” she snapped. “Of course I deny it!” “Then what were you doing in the greenhouse?” she shot back at him. “I came in response to that nearly illegible note you sent me,” he said in a bored, insulting drawl. “May I suggest that in future you devote less of your time to theatrics and some of it to improving your handwriting?” His gaze shifted to the pistol. “Put the gun down before you hurt yourself.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
But she was a widow and she had to watch her behavior. Not for her the pleasures of unmarried girls. She had to be grave and aloof. Ellen had stressed this at great length after catching Frank's lieutenant swinging Scarlett in the garden swing and making her squeal with laughter. Deeply distressed, Ellen had told her how easily a widow might get herself talked about. The conduct of a widow must be twice as circumspect as that of a matron. 'And God only knows,' thought Scarlett, listening obediently to her mother's soft voice, 'matrons never have any fun at all. So widows might as well be dead.' A widow had to wear hideous black dresses without even a touch of braid to enliven them, no flower or ribbon or lace or even jewelry, except onyx mourning brooches or necklaces made from the deceased's hair. And the black crepe veil on her bonnet had to reach to her knees, and only after three years of widowhood could it be shortened to shoulder length. Widows could never chatter vivaciously or laugh aloud. Even when they smiled, it must be a sad, tragic smile. And, most dreadful of all, they could in no way indicate an interest in the company of gentlemen. And should a gentleman be so ill bred as to indicate an interest in her, she must freeze him with a dignified but well-chosen reference to her dead husband. Oh, yes, thought Scarlett, drearily, some widows do remarry eventually, when they are old and stringy. Though Heaven knows how they manage it, with their neighbors watching. And then it's generally to some desperate old widower with a large plantation and a dozen children.
Margaret Mitchell (Gone with the Wind)
A long time ago Ian had told her he was half in love with her, yet now that they were betrothed he’d never spoken a word of it, had not even pretended. She wasn’t certain of his motives or his feelings; she wasn’t certain of her own, either. All she really knew was that the sight of his hard, handsome face with its chiseled features, and hold amber eyes never failed to make her entire being feel tense and alive. She knew he liked to kis her, and that she very much liked being kissed by him. Added to his other attractions was something else that drew her inexorably to him: From their very first meeting, Elizabeth had sensed that beneath his bland sophistication and rugged virility Ian Thornton had a depth that most people lacked. “It’s so hard to know,” she whispered, “how I ought to feel or what I ought to think. And I have the worst feeling it’s not going to matter what I know or what I think,” she added almost sadly, “because I am going to love him.” She opened her eyes and looked at Alex. “It’s happening, and I cannot stop it. It was happening two years ago, and I couldn’t stop it then, either. So you see,” she added with a sad little smile, “it would be so much nicer for me if you could love him just a little, too.” Alex reached across the table and took Elizabeth’s hands in hers. “If you love him, then he must be the very best of men. I shall henceforth make it a point to see all his best qualities!” Alex hesitated, and then she hazarded the question: “Elizabeth, does he love you?” Elizabeth shook her head. “He wants me, he says, and he wants children.” Alex swallowed embarrassed laughter. “He what?” “He wants me, and he wants children.” A funny, knowing smile tugged at Alexandra’s lips. “You didn’t tell me he said the first part. I am much encouraged,” she teased while a rosy blush stole over her cheeks. “I think I am, too,” Elizabeth admitted, drawing a swift, searching look from Alex. “Elizabeth, this is scarcely the time to discuss this-in fact,” Alex added, her flush deepening. “I don’t think there is a really good time to discuss it-but has Lucinda explained to you how children are conceived?” “Yes, of course,” Elizabeth said without hesitation. “Good, because I would have been the logical one otherwise, and I still remember my reaction when I found out. It was not a pretty sight,” she laughed. “On the other hand, you were always much the wiser girl than I.” “I don’t think so at all,” Elizabeth said, but she couldn’t imagine what there was, really, to blush about. Children, Lucinda had told her when she’d asked, were conceived when a husband kissed his wife in be. And it hurt the first time. Ian’s kisses were sometimes almost bruising, but they never actually hurt, and she enjoyed them terribly. As if speaking her feelings aloud to Alexandra had somehow relieved her of the burden of trying to deal with them, Elizabeth was so joyously relaxed that she suspected Ian noticed it at once when the men joined them in the drawing room. Ian did notice it; in fact, as they sat down to play a game of cards in accordance with Elizabeth’s cheery suggestion, he noticed there was a subtle but distinct softening in the attitudes of both ladies toward him.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Tiffany’s basket was on the table. It had a present in it, of course. Everyone knew you took a small present along when you went visiting, but the person you were visiting was supposed to be surprised when you gave it to her, and say things like “Oooh, you shouldn’t have.” “I brought you something,” said Tiffany, swinging the big black kettle onto the fire. “You’ve got no call to be bringing me presents, I’m sure,” said Granny sternly. “Yes, well,” said Tiffany, and left it at that. She heard Granny lift the lid of the basket. There was a kitten in it. “Her mother is Pinky, the Widow Cable’s cat,” said Tiffany, to fill the silence. “You shouldn’t have,” growled the voice of Granny Weatherwax. “It was no trouble.” Tiffany smiled at the fire. “I can’t be havin’ with cats.” “She’ll keep the mice down,” said Tiffany, still not turning around. “Don’t have mice.” Nothing for them to eat, thought Tiffany. Aloud, she said, “Mrs. Earwig’s got six big black cats.” In the basket, the white kitten would be staring up at Granny Weatherwax with the sad, shocked expression of all kittens. You test me, I test you, Tiffany thought. “I don’t know what I shall do with it, I’m sure. It’ll have to sleep in the goat shed,” said Granny Weatherwax. Most witches had goats. [...] When Tiffany left, later on, Granny Weatherwax said good-bye at the door and very carefully shut the kitten outside. Tiffany went across the clearing to where she’d tied up Miss Treason’s broomstick. But she didn’t get on, not yet. She stepped back up against a holly bush, and went quiet until she wasn’t there anymore, until everything about her said: I’m not here. Everyone could see pictures in the fire and in clouds. You just turned that the other way around. You turned off that bit of yourself that said you were there. You dissolved. Anyone looking at you would find you very hard to see. Your face became a bit of leaf and shadow, your body a piece of tree and bush. The other person’s mind would fill in the gaps. Looking like just another piece of holly bush, she watched the door. The wind had got up, warm but worrisome, shaking the yellow and red leaves off the sycamore trees and whirring them around the clearing. The kitten tried to bat a few of them out of the air and then sat there, making sad little mewling noises. Any minute now, Granny Weatherwax would think Tiffany had gone and would open the door and— “Forgot something?” said Granny by her ear. She was the bush. “’s very sweet. I just thought you might, you know, grow to like it,” said Tiffany, but she was thinking: Well, she could have got here if she ran, but why didn’t I see her? Can you run and hide at the same time? “Never you mind about me, my girl,” said the witch. “You run along back to Miss Treason and give her my best wishes, right now. But”—and her voice softened a little—“that was good hiding you did just then. There’s many as would not have seen you. Why, I hardly heard your hair growin’!” When Tiffany’s stick had left the clearing, and Granny Weatherwax had satisfied herself in other little ways that she had really gone, she went back inside, carefully ignoring the kitten again. After a few minutes, the door creaked open a little. It may have been just a draft. The kitten trotted inside...
Terry Pratchett (Wintersmith (Discworld, #35; Tiffany Aching, #3))
I have lived centuries and endured vampire hunts, wars, and betrayals. Until you came into my life, I have never lost control. I never had anything I wanted so much. I never had anything to lose.” She pulled his head down to her and pressed little healing kisses to his throat, to his strong jaw, to the hard corners of his mouth. “You are a good man, Mikhail.” She grinned impishly, her blue eyes teasing. “You just have too much power for your own good. But don’t worry, I know this American girl. She’s very disrespectful, and she’ll take all that arrogant starch out of you.” His answering laughter was slow in coming, but with it the terrible tension drained out of him. He wrapped his arms around her and lifted her off her feet, swinging her around, crushing her to him. As always, her heart jumped wildly. His mouth fastened on hers as he whirled them across the room to land on the bed. Raven’s laughter was soft and taunting. “We can’t possibly again.” His body was settling over hers, his knee nudging her thighs apart so he could press against her soft, welcoming body. “I think you should just stay naked and waiting for me,” he growled, stroking her to ensure her readiness. She lifted her hips invitingly. “I’m not sure we’ll know how to do this in a bed.” The last word was a gasp of pleasure as he joined their bodies. His mouth found hers again, laughter mingling with the sweet taste of passion. His hands shaped her breasts possessively and then tunneled in her hair. There was so much joy in her heart, in her mind, so much compassion and sweetness. His eternity would be filled with her laughter and her zest for life. He laughed aloud for the sheer joy of it.
Christine Feehan (Dark Prince (Dark, #1))
When Surkov finds out about the Night Wolves he is delighted. The country needs new patriotic stars, the great Kremlin reality show is open for auditions, and the Night Wolves are just the type that’s needed, helping the Kremlin rewrite the narrative of protesters from political injustice and corruption to one of Holy Russia versus Foreign Devils, deflecting the conversation from the economic slide and how the rate of bribes that bureaucrats demand has shot up from 15 percent to 50 percent of any deal. They will receive Kremlin support for their annual bike show and rock concert in Crimea, the one-time jewel in the Tsarist Empire that ended up as part of Ukraine during Soviet times, and where the Night Wolves use their massive shows to call for retaking the peninsula from Ukraine and restoring the lands of Greater Russia; posing with the President in photo ops in which he wears Ray-Bans and leathers and rides a three-wheel Harley (he can’t quite handle a two-wheeler); playing mega-concerts to 250,000 cheering fans celebrating the victory at Stalingrad in World War II and the eternal Holy War Russia is destined to fight against the West, with Cirque du Soleil–like trapeze acts, Spielberg-scale battle reenactments, religious icons, and holy ecstasies—in the middle of which come speeches from Stalin, read aloud to the 250,000 and announcing the holiness of the Soviet warrior—after which come more dancing girls and then the Night Wolves’ anthem, “Slavic Skies”: We are being attacked by the yoke of the infidels: But the sky of the Slavs boils in our veins . . . Russian speech rings like chain-mail in the ears of the foreigners, And the white host rises from the coppice to the stars.
Peter Pomerantsev (Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia)
In a very deliberate motion, he squared my shoulders in front of his and clasped my arms. “I know I could never ask you to leave River Oaks. It means a lot more to you than my family’s house means to me. Your aunt Jettie is there. It’s your home. I would like it to be my home, too. I want to make a life with you, and for most people, that means living in the same house.” Gabriel kissed me, as gentle as an angel’s wing brushing across my lips. “You’re my bloodmate in every sense of the word, the person I choose to spend the rest of my immortal life with, if you can stand me that long.” “That’s what that means?” My forehead wrinkled in concentration, and I tried to remember the first time I’d hear that word. “Wait, you told Missy the crazy Realtor that she’d suffer dire consequences if she hurt your ‘bloodmate.’ That was more than a year ago.” “I knew even then. You’re it for me, Jane. You’re my eternity.” “Well, why couldn’t you have told me?” I exclaimed. Gabriel shrugged. “You—” “I wasn’t ready to hear it yet,” I finished for him. “I’m sorry.” But as the enormity of what Gabriel had just said sunk in, a huge grin split my face. I brought it under control, so I could narrow my eyes at him. “So, you’re saying you will tell me everything now. You won’t try to protect me or keep me in the dark. You’ll trust me to make a rational decision about bad news after I have my inevitable, initial panic attack?” He nodded solemnly. “I will.” “And when I have my spastic fits of insecurity, when I make inappropriate jokes and wonder aloud why you love me, you’ll understand that this has nothing to do with you but years and years of conditioning by my mother?” He smirked. “I will.” “Will you agree never to accept invitations issued by my family unless you check with me first?” He nodded. “Absolutely.” I giggled, throwing my arms around him and kissing him deeply. “I love you.
Molly Harper (Nice Girls Don't Live Forever (Jane Jameson, #3))
The wooden ship objected with loud creaks as the heavy wind strained its sails to the limits, pushing it forwards through the waves. A rather petite vessel, it was the smallest she’d sailed. It was old and worn, too. Nora looked up at the yellowed sails fondly. It was a miracle that they’d lasted this long, cooperating with the buffeting winds without rest for many seasons now. And Nora and the ship had been through some strong gales together. Excellent craftsmanship, Nora thought and, as she often did, pondered the ship’s origins: who’d made it and what waters it’d sailed before she stole it. She’d been certain that the ship wouldn’t last long on the high seas, and that she’d soon have to find a replacement, but she’d been pleasantly surprised. Her ship might not cover vast distances in as short a time as the bigger, heavier sailing ships she was used to, but Nora could turn Naureen around or change direction in a matter of minutes. She could swiftly put distance between her and the ships she plundered. Sometimes, it seemed as if the ship responded to her thoughts, as if there was a weird invisible bond between the two of them. ‘Naureen. Us sailor gals must stick together,’ she said aloud, as if the ship could hear her. Nora always talked to her ship. Clearly a sign she’d been on the sea for too long, she mused. Naureen. Nora didn’t know who’d named the ship or what the name meant, but she thought it strangely fitting. It graced the bow of the ship, painted in beautiful calligraphy. Nora saw it whenever she was aboard another vessel, rummaging for furs or bones of extinct animals she could sell, or food. The sight of her ship always made her heart flutter with happiness. There was a time when Nora would steal the ships she plundered, if she liked them and was in the mood for a change. But not after she stole Naureen. Well, not stole, she corrected herself. When she’d come across the tiny ship, she’d found the salt-rimed corpse of the hollow-cheeked owner sprawled face down on the deck. He’d probably starved to death. His body had not been the first one Nora’d found drifting at sea, nor the last.
Margrét Helgadóttir (The Stars Seem so Far Away)
It occurred to me, not for the first time, how much simpler our lives would be if we could date each other. That delousing kit cost eleven dollars! “Do you ever think it would be easier if we could go out with girls?” I said aloud. Svetlana didn’t answer right away. “I find most of the lesbians I know a bit intimidating,” she said, finally. “And I don’t really share their aesthetic sense—or they seem not to value aesthetics that much. I just don’t think I’d fit in. Especially since I’m always lusting after boys.” That was something I thought about, too: the physical response I felt to Ivan, the dull electric jolt, some heavy, slow machinery starting to turn in my chest and between my legs. I had never felt those things with relation to a girl. On the other hand, I usually hadn’t felt them in Ivan’s presence, either; it was more when he wasn’t there. And how much was that physical feeling worth? Was it really enough to counterbalance all the disadvantages? You couldn’t just talk to Ivan like he was a normal person; he didn’t hear, or he didn’t understand, or he went off somewhere and you couldn’t find him. Also, all his friends thought I was crazy. Instead of dealing with those people, how much more fun and relaxing it would be to pet Svetlana’s shining golden hair, to tell her how pretty she was and to watch her get more pretty, as she always did when someone complimented her. Her body wanted to be complimented, and I knew just what to tell her, so why couldn’t I? “But girls are more beautiful, and so much easier to sort of negotiate with. And the lust for boys never seems to work out well for me. So it just feels like girls are at least something to think about.” Again, Svetlana didn’t answer right away. “I would feel squeamish with anything beyond kissing and playing with each other’s breasts,” she said after a moment. I realized that I, too, had only been thinking about kissing and playing with each other’s breasts. What else did lesbians even do? Other than oral sex, which was apparently horrible. The way people talked about it on sit-coms: “Does he like . . . deep-sea diving?” You had to be altruistic to do it—a generous lover. That said, oral sex with a boy also seemed likely to be disgusting. Guys themselves seemed to think so. Wasn’t that why they went around yelling “cocksucker” at people who cut them off in traffic? “Do you not feel squeamish when you think about sex with a guy?” I asked. “I do, but it feels exciting. The idea of being penetrated and dominated.
Elif Batuman (Either/Or)
because there was a new face in the chorus, and rumor—in the person of his friend Aubrey—said she was a promising possibility as a mistress. And indeed she was, Lucien had to admit—at least, she would be for Aubrey, who had come into his title and had full control of his fortune. But not for someone like Lucien—a young man on a strict allowance and whose title of Viscount Hartford was only a courtesy one, borrowed from his father. Being my lord was, he had found, one of the few benefits of being the only son of the Earl of Chiswick. “She’s quite attractive, as game pullets go,” he told Aubrey carelessly after the play, as they cracked the first bottle of wine at their club. “Have her with my blessing.” Aubrey snorted. “You know, Lucien, it’s just as well you’re not looking for a high-flyer, for you damned well couldn’t afford her.” Lucien forced a smile. “She’s not my sort, as it happens.” “Balderdash—she’s any man’s sort.” Not mine, Lucien thought absently. He might have said it aloud if the sentiment hadn’t been so startlingly true. How odd—for the chorus girl had been a prime piece, buxom and long-limbed and flashy, as well as incredibly flexible as she moved around the stage. How could he not be interested? Aubrey was looking at him strangely, so Lucien said, “If she’s so much to your taste, I’m surprised you didn’t go around to the stage door after the performance and make yourself known.” “Strategy, my friend. Never let a woman guess exactly how interested you are.” Aubrey waved a hand at a waiter to bring another bottle, and as they drank it, he detailed his plan for winning the chorus girl. “It’s too bad you can’t join the fun, for I’m certain she has a friend,” Aubrey finished. “The gossips have it that your father is never without a lightskirt, so why should he object to you having one?” “Oh, not a lightskirt. Only the finest of the demimonde will do for the Earl of Chiswick.” Lucien drained his glass. “I’m meant to be on the road to Weybridge at first light—for the duke’s birthday, you know. A few hours’ sleep before I climb into a jolting carriage will not come amiss.” “Too late.” Aubrey tilted his head toward the nearest window. “Dawn’s breaking now, if I’m not mistaken. You won’t mind if I don’t come to see you off? Deadly dull it is, waving good-bye—and I’ve a mind for a hand or two of piquet before I go home.” Lucien walked from the club to his rooms in Mount Street, hoping a fresh breeze might help clear his head. The post-chaise Uncle Josiah had ordered for him was already waiting. The horses stamped impatiently, snorting in the cool morning air, and the postboys looked bored. Nearby, Lucien’s valet paced—but he
Leigh Michaels (The Birthday Scandal)
Claire’s mug shot was taken against a white background with a ruler that was clearly off by an inch. She wondered aloud why she wasn’t asked to hold a sign with her name and inmate number. “Photoshop template,” the praying mantis said in a bored tone that indicated the question was not a new one.
Karin Slaughter (Pretty Girls)
The New Dog I. “I’m intensely afraid of almost everything. Grocery bags, potted poinsettias, bunches of uprooted weeds wilting on a hot sidewalk, clothes hangers, deflated rubber balls, being looked in the eye, crutches, an overcoat tossed across the back of a chair (everybody knows empty overcoats house ghosts), children, doorways, music, human hands and the newspaper rustling as my owner, in striped pajamas, drinks coffee and turns its pages. He wants to find out where there’ll be war in the mid-east this week. Afraid even of eating, if someone burps or clinks a glass with a fork, or if my owner turns the kitchen faucet on to wash his hands during my meal I go rigid with fear, my legs buckle, then I slink from the room. I pee copiously if my food bowl is placed on the floor before the other dogs’. I have to be served last or the natural order of things - in which every moment I am about to be sacrificed - (have my heart ripped from my chest by the priest wielding his stone knife or get run out of the pack by snarling, snapping alphas) - the most sacred hierarchy, that fated arrangement, the glue of the universe, will unstick. The evolution will never itself, and life as we know it will subside entirely, until only the simplest animal form remain - jellyfish headless globs of cells, with only microscopic whips for legs and tails. Great swirling arms of gas will arm wrestle for eons to win cosmic dominance. Starless, undifferentiated chaos will reign. II. I alone of little escaped a hell of beating, neglect, and snuffling dumpsters for sustenance before this gullible man adopted me. Now my new owner would like me to walk nicely by his side on a leash (without cowering or pulling) and to lie down on a towel when he asks, regardless of whether he has a piece of bologna in his pocket or not. I’m growing fond of that optimistic young man in spite of myself. If only he would heed my warnings I’d pour out my thoughts to him: When panic strikes you like a squall wind and disaster falls on you like a gale, when you are hunted and scorned, wisdom shouts aloud in the streets: What is consciousness? What is sensation? What is mind? What is pain? What about the sorrows of unwatered houseplants? What indoor cloudburst will slake their thirst? What of my littler brothers and sisters, dead at the hands of dirty two legged brutes? Who’s the ghost in the universe behind its existence, necessary to everything that happens? Is it the pajama-clad man offering a strip of bacon in his frightening hand (who’ll take me to the park to play ball if he ever gets dressed)? Is it his quiet, wet-eyed, egg-frying wife? Dear Lord, Is it me?
Amy Gerstler (Ghost Girl)
whirs. See?” Heidi grabbed the string and pulled. The snail toppled over. “No, not like that,” Vanja said. “I’ll show you.” She placed the snail upright and slowly dragged it a few meters. “I’ve got a little sister!” she said aloud. Robin had gone to the window where he stood staring out into the backyard. Stella, who was energetic and presumably extra-lively since it was her party, excitedly shouted something that I didn’t understand, pointed to one of the two smaller girls, who handed her the doll she was clutching, took out a little carriage, placed the doll in it, and began to push it down the hall. Achilles had found his way to Benjamin, a boy eighteen months older than Vanja, who usually sat deeply absorbed in something, a drawing or a pile of Legos or a pirate ship with plastic pirates. He was imaginative, independent, and well-behaved,
Karl Ove Knausgård (A Man in Love)
Shaking his head at his own skittishness, he let out a sigh and dropped down beside his little girl. Immediately, she scrambled over to him as fast as her hands and knees could take her and climbed happily up into his lap. He picked her up. Her very presence was a balm to his nerves, a reassurance that purity and innocence still shone in a world that had, of late, seemed dominated by wickedness and evil. But it soon became obvious that Charlotte wanted more than just a cuddle. Eventually, she began to get restless, and Gareth had learned enough about her to recognize immediately what she wanted. "Hungry, Charlie-girl?" Raising himself to his knees, he picked up the bowl he'd excitedly prepared a few minutes ago and sat down, anticipation lighting up his face. Charlotte was beginning to eat solid food now, which delighted him beyond words because that meant he could have a hand in feeding her. Still, Juliet had looked dubious when she'd left him with the baby an hour before. Mash up her food carefully, she had instructed him, explaining the procedure with as much care as if she'd been advising an overeager two-year-old, going on and on while he'd stood there and nodded and nodded and nodded. Make sure there are no lumps in it, and don't make her eat it all if she doesn't want it. He realized his first mistake as he dug the spoon into the bowl and eagerly began to feed the baby. "Hmmm … perhaps I should have mashed up the peas or even the carrots, instead of these red beets left over from supper last night," he mused, aloud. Indeed, it soon became difficult to know who was faring worse in this new venture — his daughter, now smeared from head to toe in red beet pulp, or her papa, who had it all over his fingers and in his lap. Charlotte looked up at him and smiled through the mess. Gareth guffawed. Ah, hell. They were both laughing and having fun. They were half-way through the bowl when a loud hammering at the door nearly caused Gareth to jump out of his skin. Lucien. Scooping up the baby and holding her easily in one arm, he went to open it — and found Perry and the rest of the Den of Debauchery standing just outside. "Bloody hell!"  Perry's jaw nearly hit the floor. "What on earth have you done to her?!" Gareth looked at Charlotte and fully comprehended just what a mess the two of them had made. Huge red blotches stained the delicate skin of the baby's face. Her hands were bright red, her dress was ruined, and bits of crimson pulp clung to her chin. Oh, hell, he thought wildly, Juliet's going to kill me! He grabbed up a napkin from the table and began scrubbing at Charlotte's face, to no avail. "Damnation!" he cried, much to Perry's amusement and the guffaws of the others. "Playing papa to the hilt, are you, Gareth?" "So much for your days of debauchery!" "I say, next thing you know, he'll be changing napkins — ha, ha, ha!" "Sod off," Gareth said, realizing how much he had not missed their immaturity.
Danelle Harmon (The Wild One (The de Montforte Brothers, #1))
Well, this all seems entirely outrageous,” Sadler put in, though his wan cheeks showed he had some notion of the ramifications. “My girl would never run off with that scoundrel. She knows better.” “Does she?” Blakeborough said cynically, to Dom’s surprise. “Until she ended up with Rathmoor’s brother, you feared she might actually marry Samuel.” “But that was long before he got cut off by your esteemed father,” Sadler said. “Once that happened, Nancy agreed with me when I stated that the fellow was a rascal and not to be trusted.” He winced. “If you’ll pardon me for saying so, Lord Blakeborough.” Blackborough’s hard laugh cut through the room. “No need to beg pardon from me, sir. I know what my brother is capable of.” Jane twisted to look up at him. “And what is that, Edwin? I mean, he…he wouldn’t hurt Nancy, would he?” The earl glanced at Dom, as if appealing to him for help in dealing with Jane’s delicate feelings. “She already knows what got Barlow disinherited, I’m afraid,” Dom said. “I consulted with Lord Ravenswood on the matter, and she overheard our discussion.” “Dear God,” Blakeborough muttered. “What?” Sadler asked. “What is it?” “Well, Edwin?” Jane asked anxiously. “Would he hurt her?” Blakeborough squeezed Jane’s shoulder, then left his hand resting there. That seemed remarkably intimate for a man who supposedly had only a platonic-sounding “arrangement” with her. Dom tamped down his urge to go knock the earl’s hand from here into the next county. “It depends on how you define ‘hurt,’” Blakeborough mused aloud. “I don’t think he’d…do what he did before with that other poor girl.” “What other poor girl?” Sadler cried. “It’s all right, Mr. Sadler,” Dom cut in. “Tristan and I agree with the earl’s assessment. We think Barlow is enamored of your daughter and wouldn’t harm her.” He probably shouldn’t mention his suspicions about what Nancy was capable of. Her father might not handle that well at all.
Sabrina Jeffries (If the Viscount Falls (The Duke's Men, #4))
He held up a small piece of paper she recognized with a pang as being from the pink stationary set her grandfather had bought her for her tenth birthday. “‘I want to marry a man who will wear pink shirts because it’s my favorite color,’” he read aloud, and then he looked up at her. “Really? That’s your criteria?” “It seemed important when I was ten.” “Bouquet—pink gladioli tied with white ribbon,” he read from a torn piece of school notebook paper. “What the hell is gladioli? Sounds like pasta.” “Glads are my favorite flower.” She grabbed her clothes and went into the bathroom, closing the door none too softly behind her. When she emerged, he was still in bed and still rummaging through her childish dreams for her future. She watched him frown at a hand-drawn picture of a wedding cake decorated with pink flowers before he set it aside and picked out another piece of pink stationary. “‘If the man who wants to marry me doesn’t get down on one knee to propose,’” he read in a high-pitched, mock-feminine voice, “‘I’ll tell him no.’” “My younger self had very high standards,” she snapped. “Obviously that’s changed.” He just laughed at her. “Were you going to put all this into spreadsheet form? Maybe give the poor schmuck a checklist?” “Are you going to get up and go to work today or are you going to stay in bed and mock a little girl’s dreams?” “I can probably do both.
Shannon Stacey (Yours to Keep (Kowalski Family, #3))
We had a bad class status. That was why An Yi was not allowed to wear mourning bands or even cry aloud for her grandmother. That was why my house was searched, and strangers could come in and do whatever they wanted. It was just a simple fact. Why should I ask why? There was absolutely nothing I could do to change it.
Ji-li Jiang (Red Scarf Girl)
"It's okay," Rafe said again. "They've got you." The helicopter spun, whipping us around. Pain shot through me as Rafe's weight almost wrenched my shoulders out of their sockets, and my hold on his wrists broke. Corey lost his grip on my leg. I heard him shout and Daniel shout and the girls join in, and I kicked, trying to get my leg back up where someone could grab it. The helicopter tilted again. I started to slide, Daniel sliding with me. And I knew we were going to fall. Rafe, me, Daniel, we were all going to fall. "Hold On!" I shouted to Rafe. "It's okay," he said, and I wasn't even sure he spoke aloud, didn't see his lips moving. "It's okay." He let go. I clawed the air, screaming. I didn't even see him drop. The helicopter banked and I caught only a blur of treetops spinning past and when I looked around, there was no Rafe. No sign of him at all. Corey and Daniel dragged me back into the helicopter. Someone got the door closed. I don't know who. I was crying and shaking so hard I couldn't see, couldn't hear, couldn't think. As I huddled on the floor, I felt Daniel behind me, his arms around me. Kenji pushed onto my lap, and I buried my face in her fur, gripping handfuls and sobbing against her.
Kelley Armstrong (The Calling (Darkness Rising, #2))
Here’s something a parent of a typical child probably never has to suffer through: a conversation with a doctor in which the doctor wonders aloud whether a child like theirs can be ethically killed.
Heather Lanier (Raising a Rare Girl: A Memoir)
The alternative kids said nothing so I chose Holes, whose author was renowned for his quirky sense of humor. I started to read aloud with gusto. A girl listened for about two minutes then asked if she could read aloud. “Sure,” I said, handing her the book. I watched her struggle to read aloud and helped her pronounce a few words. She read several pages before losing interest and wandering off. In fact, all of the kids had wandered away while we were reading. They were out in the hall and in doorways of other classrooms. Deputy Rodriguez arrived and herded kids back inside my room, and I was embarrassed to have literally lost them. When a majority of kids returned, I closed the door, trapping them, and kept on reading.
Mary Hollowell (The Forgotten Room: Inside a Public Alternative School for At-Risk Youth)
I should be queen. I always should have been queen. Instead I have to contend with her." She could not bear to say the girl's name aloud. Star. Her husband had fallen in love with a beautiful young girl with a celestial name, so how was she supposed to compete with that?
Jill Eileen Smith (Star of Persia: (An Inspirational Retelling about Queen Esther))
Today, I was babysitting a seven-year-old girl and we were eating chocolate-covered nuts. She kept on chewing the nuts, and wondered aloud where the chocolate was. I told her that to taste the chocolate, you had to suck on the treats. The first thing she told her parents when they got home was: ‘I learned how to suck nuts!’ FML
Maxime Valette (F My Life: And You Thought You'd Had A Bad Day...)
I could hear the wind. Feel the wind. Taste it even. But it took a moment for me to crack my eyes open and realize I was hanging outside the helicopter. Hanging outside the helicopter. The earth bobbed and whirled below us, trees and rock and water spinning into a blur. “Don’t look down!” I thought it was Daniel, but then realized Rafe was staring up at me. “I’ve got you!” I shouted. He smiled, this weirdly calm smile. “I know.” “Just hold on!” “I am.” “We’ll get you down.” “It’s okay, Maya.” His voice was as strangely calm as his smile. My heart was thudding so hard I could barely breathe, and he just kept smiling up at me, his gaze locked on mine. Calm washed through me, slowing my heart, as if I was feeling what he did, an oddly disconnected peacefulness. “It’s okay,” Rafe said again. “They’ve got you.” The helicopter spun, whipping us around. Pain shot through me as Rafe’s weight almost wrenched my shoulders out of their sockets, and my hold on his wrists broke. Corey lost his grip on my leg. I heard him shout and Daniel shout and the girls join in, and I kicked, trying to get my leg back up where someone could grab it. The helicopter tilted again. I started to slide, Daniel sliding with me. And I knew we were going to fall. Rafe, me, Daniel, we were all going to fall. “Hold on!” I shouted to Rafe. “It’s okay,” he said, and I wasn’t even sure he spoke aloud, didn’t see his lips moving. “It’s okay.” He let go.
Kelley Armstrong (The Calling (Darkness Rising, #2))
The old scholar raised his head and looked long at the girl. Her splendid form, glowing with the rich life and strength of the wilderness, showed in every line the proud old southern blood. Could she learn to be a fine lady? Mr. Howitt thought of the women of the cities, pale, sickly, colorless, hot-house posies, beside this mountain flower. What would this beautiful creature be, had she their training? What would she gain? What might she not lose? Aloud he said, "My dear child, do you know what it is that you ask?
Harold Bell Wright (The Shepherd of the Hills)
Toby wished they’d clear out. If there was anything he couldn’t stand, it was giggling girls. One of them said aloud, “Don’t you just love freckles?” “On boys, I do,” another replied. “On girls, I think they’re tacky.” Little Jim had no better sense than to grin at that. He said to Toby, “Don’t you wish you had freckles?” “Shut up, Jim. Don’t pay ‘em no mind,” Toby whispered.
Robinson Barnwell (Head Into the Wind)
We were driving up to Palos Verdes from Long Beach after a day of second grade. I was eight years old. I had written, illustrated, and turned in a story that required my grandmother’s presence at school, a substitution for my mother who was always at work. We met with Sister Mary, the principal, and Sister Bernadette, the nice one, and the school nurse. As we drove home, my grandmother asked me to read the offending piece aloud. In the story, it is an October night. Five girls are invited to a slumber party. Each girl has a defining characteristic: one of them is sporty, one is brainy, one is shy, one of them is the most beautiful and the leader. One of them is the orphan. During the slumber party the girls play with a Ouija board and detect the existence of spirits. They perform a séance to entreat the spirits to come closer. They perform “Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board,” lifting the Orphan with their fingertips because she is the smallest. All the lights go out and she ascends toward the ceiling. They are successful. The Orphan drops down to the floor, unconscious. She wakes up and realizes that she is not alone. She has been possessed by an evil spirit, her twin who died when they were in the womb. The Evil Twin begins to twist her thoughts, then her words. The Orphan knows it will make her do awful things, turn her into someone she doesn’t want to be. She goes to the kitchen, where the mother of one of the girls is cooking. The Evil Twin tells her to pick up a knife. The Orphan picks it up. The Evil Twin tells her to use the knife to kill the mother, then her friends. The Orphan stabs herself in the chest instead. The End, I said. I watched for my grandmother’s reaction. From this vantage point it doesn’t take a psychologist to see how terrified I was by what might seize me. There was already a split in me: disorder, abandonment. I leaned into the gothic to illustrate what I couldn’t articulate. At eight years old, I unconsciously understood the function of symbols. I mimicked my favorite writer, Poe, but with this story I had taken the perilous and grandiose first step of making it my own. Did I already know that art could make sense of madness? Did my grandmother? Her navy Cadillac was at a stoplight. There was a Pavilions supermarket behind her, a row of eucalyptus trees, an air-conditioned stream through the car that made my nose run. She looked at me, so directly I flinched, and she said, Never stop writing.
Stephanie Danler (Stray: A Memoir)
Was it upsetting, bewildering, and possibly traumatic to have four girls from your school - the smart, popular ones at that - disappear to ISIS? No longer sitting next to you in English class pouring over Animal Farm, discussing why the pigs (the girls sometimes spelled out P-I-G when speaking aloud, to minimize its haram grossness) embodied tyranny and propaganda. No longer kneeling next to you on Fridays in the prayer room, pressing their foreheads to the ground. Someone could have helped the students of Bethnal Green Academy to make some sense of it all, but making sense of it, as some students would discover later, was dangerously too close, in the eyes of the police and other community authorities, to sympathizing.
Azadeh Moaveni (Guest House for Young Widows: Among the Women of ISIS)