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Girl Against the Universe

Paula Stokes

Top 10 Best Quotes

“How can something feel so crucial in the moment and then seem completely trivial after the fact?”

“Time doesn’t heal anything. It’s like drinking. The best it can do is help you forget, if you’re lucky.”

“If you’ve never been close to death, life probably seems pretty solid. The truth is, it can be destroyed in an instant, like a photograph. One moment your world is slick and shiny. But then the Universe crumples everything into a ball. And even if you don’t get crushed, if you fight to straighten things out, your life will never be the same again.”

“The world is full of holes and uneven seams, wrinkled places that you can’t make smooth, no matter how hard you try.”

“Some people think they can just decree that everything will be fine. The world doesn’t work like that. I’m not sure the world gives a crap about anyone’s promises, well-meaning or otherwise. Sometimes the Universe just takes what it wants.”

“Loneliness is just like everything else-if you endure it long enough, you get used to it.”

“Once I accepted the fact that I was bad luck, I shied away from group activities. And groups. And activities. I started spending a lot of time in my room, tucked under my covers reading books. There’s only so much damage a book can do, and I wasn’t worried about hurting myself. Accidentally hurting yourself is way better than hurting other people. Sure, I got lonely for a while. But getting invited to slumber parties just wasn’t worth the stress of wondering if I might accidentally burn down the house with my flat iron or be the only survivor of a freak sleepover massacre. And loneliness is just like everything else—if you endure it long enough, you get used to it.”

“I remember the big gaping hole left by my dad’s absence in the months following the accident. He’d been the one who went to my parent-teacher conferences, the one who taught me mnemonics to memorize the Great Lakes and the Earth’s atmospheres. Whenever I did something silly, my dad always made me feel better by telling me a story from the firehouse about someone who had done something even sillier. Sometimes you don’t realize all the things a person does for you until they aren’t there to do them anymore.”

“Accidentally hurting yourself is way better than hurting other people.”

“There's a thing that sometimes happens in your brain when you're the only survivor of a horrific accident. Part of you is happy because you're alive, but the rest of you is devastated. Then the sad part beats up the happy part until nothing is left, until all you feel is terrible sorrow for the people who didn't make it. And guilt. Guilt because you wonder if the Universe made a mistake. Guilt because you know you're not any better than those who died.”

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Book Keywords:

bad-luck, world, loss, accident, time, death, promises, loneliness, healing, universe, life, parents, death-and-dying, in-the-moment, crucial, drinking, trivial

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