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Nell Zink

Top 10 Best Quotes

“Fatherhood surprised him pleasantly. As a male he assumed no unpleasant duties would accrue to him. He would be responsible for teaching the child conversational skills once it reached its teens.”

“When the past is hard to explain, it’s best to concentrate on the future.”

“Peggy had not forgotten the intellectual and social ambitions she had started life with only a decade before. Years so weary and routine laden, they seemed like a single year that had repeated itself. She wanted to be creative and self-reliant.”

“Over milk and cookies after Karen’s return, she confessed to Karen that she had no idea what Karen wanted out of life. “You’re a cipher,” she said. “A mystery. What are your ambitions and desires? When I was your age, I wanted to write plays.” “I want to get good grades and go to college.” “And what are you going to do when you get there?” “How would I know? I need to get there first and see what it’s like. There are all these majors that sound neat, but I don’t know what they are. Like ‘sociology.’ What is it?”

“Lee explained to her that art for art’s sake is an upper-class aesthetic. To create art divorced from any purpose, you can’t be living a life driven by need and desire.”

“Gradually her fear faded to the existential angst that incessantly haunts all mankind in modernity.”

“College girls on the road! One-night stands! Lee felt like an Austro-Hungarian emperor attended on his deathbed by flappers. He felt them stealing his life—literally going back in time and taking, through their incoherent lifestyles, the little he had struggled so hard to attain.”

“Besides, adulthood is never something girls grow into. It is something they have thrust upon them, menstruation being only the first of many two-edged swords subsumed under the rubric “becoming a woman,” all of them occasions to stay home from school and weep.”

“There was no circumcision. Lee said circumcision was dreamed up by moralists and lotion salesmen to make hand jobs chafe, and Peggy deferred to his better judgement.”

“She had wanted to write about idealised partners. But the impressive men she had known weren’t anybody’s partner. They were lone wolves and dictatorial heads of families. The idea of partnering with a powerful man – well, it sounds nice enough, but even on paper it won’t fly. A novel ends with a wedding for a reason. Partnership is antidramatic. Partners are not adversaries. Partners don’t fuck.”

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Book Keywords:

art, future, partnership, partners, past, circumcision

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