This is the saddest book I have read in the past several years; in all my life, maybe. Other people keep saying that it has taught them to appreciate life, to live fully. I didn’t feel that. I only felt sad. Or maybe it didn’t sink in just yet.
Several years ago I have seen “Sweet November” and I thought the final decision was a worthwhile one. This novel made me doubt that. Hollywood is always trying to make things easy.
Their love seemed a bit unrealistic to me. But I think that in such a situation it was only fair for Tessa to “get it right” the first time. I can understand why she wanted to do drugs and break the law. After all, what did it matter? But I don’t see the line of thought behind the “instructions” she left for Adam.
“Look after no one except yourself. Go to University, and make lots of friends, and get drunk! Forget your door keys! Laugh! Eat Pot Noodles for breakfast. Miss lectures. Be irresponsible.”
Is that the only way to feel alive?
Here is the list of quotes, finally. I might have gotten some of the punctuation wrong since I translated from audio.
- (about god) I don’t think so. I think he might be dead.
- Live fast, die young, have a good-looking corpse!
- I don’t think words reach people. Maybe nothing does.
- Four years of pathetic optimism burns well.
- I want to live before I die. It’s the only thing that makes sense.
- (about heaven) I think it’s a great big lie. When you’re dead, you’re dead.
- Every few years we disappear […]. All our cells are replaced by others. Not a single bit of me is the same as when I was last in this room. I was someone else when I wrote my name in there. Someone healthy.
- I used to believe that dad could do anything. Save me from anything. But he can’t. He’s just a man.
- Perhaps I’m dead. Perhaps this is all it would be. The living will carry on in their world, touching, walking; and I’ll continue in this empty world, tapping soundlessly on the glass between us.
- I mostly believe in chaos. If wishes came true, my bones wouldn’t ache as if all the space inside them is used up. There wouldn’t be a mist in front of my eyes that I can’t brush away. […] The Universe might be random, but I can make something different happen.
- It’s easy to talk in the dark. I never knew that before.
- To find love, just as I go and have to give it up. It’s such a bad joke.
- How can I feel older than my own mother? I close my eyes so I don’t have to see her fail.
- It’s so tangible. Being and not being.
- This mad psycho tells everyone to get into a field and says “I’m going to pick one of you, just one of you, out of all of you to die;” and everyone’s looking around thinking “It’s so unlikely to be me, because there’s thousands of us, so statistically it’s completely unlikely;” and the psycho walks up and down, looking at everyone, and when he gets near me he hesitates, and he smiles, and then he points right at me and says “You’re the one;” and the shock that it’s me, and yes of course it’s me, why wouldn’t it be, I knew all along!
- Every time I close my eyes I fall. Endlessly falling.
- The sound of a bird flying low across the garden. Then nothing. Nothing. A cloud passes. Nothing again. Light falls through the window; falls onto me, into me. Moments… all gathering… towards this one.