Quotes from Summer in Orcus

Summer in Orcus
Cover detail from Summer in Orcus By T. Kingfisher

Sometimes, when you are looking for a new book to immerse yourself in, reading a description or review of a book doesn’t work: it can be too vague or confusing, it may sound uninteresting, or even turn out to be deceptive in some cases. Sometimes going straight to the text is much more satisfying. Here I present to you 21 quotes from the book Summer in Orcus by T. Kingfisher aka Ursula Vernon, one of my recent favourite writers, and award-winning author of books for both children and adults:

“I’m not supposed to talk to strangers,” said Summer,….
“If you’re waiting for someone to come and make introductions, you’ll be waiting a long time,” snapped the old woman. “Besides, it’s not strangers you need to worry about—it’s the ones you know that get you.”

“Whispering through cracks is all very good for foolish lovers and eloping brides, but you’re too young and I’m too old and have had far too many husbands besides.”

“Summer’s mother believed that books were safe things that kept you inside, which only shows how little she knew about it, because books are one of the least safe things in the world.”

“Summer’s mother, in addition to being wrong about books, would also have been quite surprised to learn that her daughter was a very different person at school than she was at home. This is a common problem among parents.”

“There is something very freeing about knowing that you are in the worst possible trouble that you can be in. No matter what you do, it cannot possibly get any worse”

“The weasel chattered his jaw, the way a cat will when it sees a bird, but stayed on Summer’s shoulder. “Tempting,” he said. “Verrrry tempting. But they’re either leaves enchanted to look like mice or mice enchanted to look like leaves, and enchantment curdles in your stomach when you eat it.”

“In movies, when someone has just made a very dramatic statement, everyone gasps or recoils in horror, so you might think that when Summer heard the bear woman say, “There is a cancer at the heart of the world,” she would have done something similar. In real life, though, a very dramatic statement is usually met with awkward silence, and then somebody makes a joke to try to break the silence, and somebody else decides they need a cup of tea.”

“I don’t know what I’m supposed to do, or which way I’m supposed to go. If I’m even supposed to go somewhere.”
In the stories that she had read, when you went to another world, you usually knew what you were doing, didn’t you? You were met by fauns who told you about prophecies, or you landed in the middle of a war and it was immediately obvious whose side you were supposed to be on.”

“It is difficult to walk across an enchanted desert and then be thrust into someone else’s sense of humor.”

“Grown-ups are strange creatures, and many of them are useless, but even the worst of them has authority.”

“No sense being pudding-hearted!”

“The wolf met her eyes with his own fierce, impossibly green ones, and Summer thought, I have to get him out. It doesn’t matter if he eats me. If I leave him here, I won’t feel like me any more.”

“It is a great relief, when one has thrown away normal life in search of their heart’s desire, to know that one is doing it right and isn’t going to get yelled at for going the wrong way.”

“We do not hold ourselves responsible for the acts of others.”

“…what I think is of no concern to anyone but me, unless I choose to tell them.”

“The thoughts of others are dangerous,” … “But it is not a danger that we can protect ourselves from.”

“A friend will not think unkindly of you, and an unfriend will not tell you the truth of their thoughts…”

“… start a little before the beginning, because we are usually wrong about where things begin.”

“Saving a single wondrous thing is better than saving the world. For one thing, it’s more achievable. The world is never content to stay saved.”

“Hearts can only be changed from within, and there is no magic in the world that can change them from without.”

“The wolf laughed, but kindly. “The great joy of the world, Summer-cub, is that it is full of wondrous things.”

All excerpts from: Kingfisher, T. Summer in Orcus. Red Wombat Tea Company. 2016.

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