What is Love? (Let’s Ask My Bookcase.)

What I meant to do was find some succinct passages from some favorite books about all kinds of love. What I ended up doing was spending the day sitting on my kitchen floor crying and reading bits and pieces of books looking for just the right things. (Why didn’t I sit on the couch? Because that would have been admitting that I was going to spend the day reading. The kitchen floor felt more like a quick stop between other things.) The whole process left me with a list of at least 17 books I want to scour for just the right passage but don’t own, so I’ve filled up my library hold list. (Again.)

It was too much for Alice. Her instinct was to comfort him, and she wanted to be comforted herself, and it was Nick for heaven’s sake. She launched herself across the room and into his arms and buried her face in his chest, breathing in deeply. It was still Nick. He still smelled exactly like himself.”  –What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

He raked a hand through his hair, leaving it mussed. How many times had I watched him do that very thing? His mouth lifted into a crooked smile. I stared at that smile, remembering how it had felt to kiss those lips, to hold his face in my hands, to bury my fingers in his hair.” –Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

Lily’s smile was the widest of all. She pushed her long hair back as she drew close to him, her green eyes, so like his, searched his face hungrily, as though she would never are able to look at him enough. ‘You’ve been so brave.’” –Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

Love is lak de sea. It’s uh movin’ thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from de shore it meets, and it’s different with every shore.” –Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

“Finnikin wanted something more from his father than this. More for the ten years of longing. He stared at this stranger, his father, straight in the eye. ‘I. Go. Nowhere. Without. You.'” –Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

“We shared an apple, passing it back and forth between bites, which is close to kissing, if you’ve never kissed before. And, after some gentle goading, Denna sang for me. One verse of ‘Come Wash,’ a verse I had never heard before, which I suspect she made up on the spot. I will not repeat it here, as she sang it to me, not to you.” –The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

“A definition not found in the dictionary. Not leaving: an act of trust and love, often deciphered by children.” The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak

Sinking into the chair which had occupied, succeeding to the very spot where he had leaned and written, her eyes devoured the following words:
‘I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago…I must go, uncertain of my fate; but shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father’s house this evening or never.’
” –Persuasion by Jane Austen

But she stepped forward and placed a finger to his lips, and there it was before him. The greatest prayer to the gods he could muster with a heart so broken. Don’t let me outlive this woman. Don’t let me exist one moment without her.” –Quintana of Charyn by Melina Marchetta

And out of respect for dear Mrs. Weasley, who only missed making the list by virtue of her passages being too long to fit neatly in a post like this, call your mom and tell you love her.

 

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