Book of the Day Archive
August 7, 2020
Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, ‘and what is the use of a book,’ thought Alice ‘without pictures or conversation?’
August 6, 2020
“Look here, Mac. I’m going to give it to you straight. Grown-ups lie. Sure, they like to say that kids make stuff up and that we don’t tell the truth, but they’re the lying liars.”
August 5, 2020
Brrrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiinng! An alarm clock clanged in the dark and silent room. A bed spring creaked. A woman’s voice sang out impatiently: “Bigger, shut that thing off!”
July 31, 2020
Here is a small fact: You are going to die.
July 30, 2020
When the guide switches off his flashlight in the underground caverns of Lascaux in the Dordogne, the effect is overwhelming. “The senses suddenly are wiped out,” one visitor recalled, “the millennia drop away…You were never in darker darkness in your life. It was–I don’t know, just a complete knockout. You don’t know whether you are looking north, south, east or west. All orientation is gone, and you are in a darkness that never saw the sun.”
July 29, 2020
You can’t just drop a dead sister into the conversation. If it accidentally comes up that my sister died, everyone just freezes, their mouths hanging open and their eyes wide.
July 24, 2020
Maybe, while he was in jail, Tupac started thinking about his Big Purpose. That’s what D called it–our Big Purpose. She said everybody’s got one it’s just that we gotta figure out what it is and then go have it.
July 23, 2020
Ree Dolly stood at break of day on her cold front steps and smelled coming flurries and saw meat. Meat hung from trees across the creek. The carcasses hung pale of flesh with a fatty gleam from lowlimbs of saplings in the side yards.
July 22, 2020
You need something? I can get it for you. You have a problem? I can solve it. That’s why they come to me.
July 17, 2020
The boy was about fifteen years old. He tried to stand very straight and still when he heard the news, but inside of him everything had gone black. It wasn’t that he couldn’t endure pain. In summer he would put a stone hot from the fire on his flesh to see how long he could stand it. In winter he would sit in the icy river until his Indian father smoking on the bank said he could come out.
July 16, 2020
The two boys who vanished in the pond that night were farm kids, cousins of some kind. They had the same last name, Peckham. Terri Carr told the story to Jessie the day they met on the raft.
July 15, 2020
“What! Who are you? How did you get in here?”
“Hey boss! The name’s Nimona. The Agency sent me. I’m your new sidekick!”
July 10, 2020
I have no reason not to answer the door so I answer the door. I have no tiny round window to inspect visitors so I open the door and before me is a tall, sturdily build African-American woman, a few years older than me, wearing a red nylon sweatsuit. She speaks to me loudly, “You have a phone, sir?”
July 9, 2020
I’m officially resigning from love. Time in a cell will do that to a kid. For the record: I didn’t do it.
July 8, 2020
Sara Godfrey was lying on the bed tying a kerchief on the dog, Boysie. “Hold your chin up, Boysie, will you?” she said as she braced herself on one elbow.
July 3, 2020
The sun does not go down. This is the first thing that Eric Seven notices about Blessed Island. There will be many other strange things that he will notice, before the forgetting takes hold of him, but that will come later.
July 2, 2020
Something sharp pokes me in the ribs. “You should totally sign up for a solo,” Soojin whispers from the seat behind me in music class. I shake my head. The mere thought of singing in front of a crowd makes my stomach twist into knots.
July 1, 2020
“HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You look ridiculous.” Little brothers can always be counted on to reach peak levels of annoying at exactly the wrong moment.
June 26, 2020
Theory #1: “We come from the ocean. My brother and me. We were rolled out of sand, at the bottom of the water. From the very darkest part of the earth.”
June 25, 2020
Princeton, in the summer, smelled of nothing, and although Ifemelu liked the tranquil greenness of the many trees, the clean streets and stately home, the delicately overpriced shops, and the quiet, abiding air of earned grace, it was this, the lack of a smell, that most appealed to her, perhaps because the other American cities she knew well had all smelled distinctly.
June 24, 2020
When my father died, I thought the world would come to an end. Standing in the churchyard in my borrowed mourning black, I was dimly aware of my sister Rosie beside me, the other mourners huddled round the grave. Great dark clouds gathered over the river, and I knew them for what they were: The End, poised to unleash some terrible wrath and sweep us all right out of the Valley.
June 19, 2020
What I couldn’t get out of my skull was the thought of their rough, grimy hands all over my clean sneaks.
June 18, 2020
Sometimes I stare into the dark corner of my room and see the ghost of my sister Amelia. She’s ten years old- the age she would be now, if she hadn’t died- but she doesn’t talk like a ten year old. She has the eyes of a grandmother and the voice of a saint.
June 17, 2020
The night joggers were out as usual. The young man could see the dim figures on the track even in this pale light, slowly pounding round and round the most infinite of footpaths.
June 12, 2020
For a long time after that summer, the four Penderwick sisters still talked of Arundel. Fate drove us there, Jane would say. No, it was the greedy landlord who sold our vacation house on Cape Cod, someone else would say, probably Skye. Who knew which was right?
June 11, 2020
We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck.
June 10, 2020
I’m allergic to trouble. It makes my hands itch.
June 5, 2020
John? Can you swim?
June 4, 2020
The poor and dispossessed take up the drums for civil rights–freedoms to think and speak, petition, pray, and vote. When thunder comes, the civil righteous are finished being meek.
June 3, 2020
Son, last Sunday the host of a popular news show asked me what it was like to lose my body.