Top Ten Quotes from Favorite Fantasy
and Science Fiction Books
1. “What is the use of a book,” thought Alice, “without pictures or conversations?”
- Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures inWonderland (1865)
2. “It was on a dreary night of November, that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils. With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet. It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out, when, by the glimmer of the half-extinguished light, I saw the dull yellow eye of the creature open; it breathed hard, and a convulsive motion agitated its limbs.
How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how delineate the wretch whom with such infinite plans and care I had endeavored to form?
- Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, or theModern Prometheus (1818)
3. “Brains are the only things worth having in the world, no matter whether one is a crow or a man.”
- L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900)
4. “Thought itself is a disease of the brain, a degenerative condition of matter. […] The mind defends itself against the disintegrative process of creativity. It begins to jell, notions solidify into inalterable systems, which simply refuse to be broken down and reformed.”
- Thoms M. Disch, Camp Concentration(1968)
5. “Harrison Wintergreen was inside his own body.
It was a world of wonder and loathsomeness, of the majestic and the ludicrous. Wintergreen's point of view, which was his mind analogized as a body within his true body, was inside a vast network of pulsing arteries, like some monstrous freeway system. The analogy crystallized. It was a freeway, and Wintergreen was driving down it. . . The traffic ebbed and congested like a crosstown rush hour. Wintergreen drove on , searching, searching.”
- Norman Spinrad, “Carcinoma Angels” (1967) in Dangerous Visions.
6. “Of all the energies in the universe, time is the most potent.”
- A. E. Van Vogt, “The Seesaw” (1941)
7. “Night City was like a deranged experiment in social Darwinism, designed by a bored researcher who kept one thumb permanently on the fast forward button. Stop hustling and you sank without a trace, but move a little too swiftly and you'd break the fragile surface tension of the black market; either way, you were gone,”
- William Gibson, Neuromancer (1984)
8. “We are all insects,” he said to Miss Epheikian. “Groping toward something terrible or divine.”
- Philip K. Dick, The Man in the HighCastle (1962)
9. “Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your had touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there.”
- Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 (1954)
10. “Your life from birth to death resembles the progress of a hopeless drunk tightrope walker whose act has been so bad up till now that he's being bombarded with rotten eggs and broken bottles.”
- John Brunner, Stand on Zanzibar (1968)
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. I modified my list to include only quotes from Fantasy and Science Fiction books. This is also a list for today only – given another day and my top ten would likely be different. So, please, enjoy the top ten list for today.