I was raised among books, making invisible friends in pages that seemed cast from dust and whose smell I carry on my hands to this day.

Why is it that the less on has to say the more one says it in the most pompous and pedantic way possible?

Shirley Jackson's writings are a must for aficionados of the gothic and of good literature.

Madmen always think it's the others who are mad.

Max had once read in one of his father's books that some childhood images become engraved in the mind like photographs, like scenes you can return to again and again and will always remember, no matter how much time goes by.

Perhaps she loved me, in her own way, as I loved her, in mine. But we didn't know one another. Perhaps because I never allowed her to know me, or I never took any steps towards getting to know her. We spent our lives like two strangers who see each other every single day and greet one another out of politeness.

Keep your dreams, you will never know when you need them.

And for a moment I thought there were no more ghosts there than those of absence and loss, and that the light that smiled on me was borrowed light, only real as long as I could hold it in my eyes, second by second.

It is impossible to survive in a prolonged state of reality.

Nobody had noticed, nobody had paid attention, but, as usual, the essential part of the matter had been settled before the story had begun, and by then it was too late.

Normally, the more talent one has, the more one doubts it. And vice versa.

Go to hell, I whispered. The night darker than ever, leaned in against the window panes.

Whenever it poured like this, Max felt as if time was pausing. It was like a cease-fire during which you could stop whatever you were doing and just stand by a window for hours, watching the performance, an endless curtain of tears falling from heaven.

I've always thought that anyone who needs to join a herd so badly must be a bit of a sheep himself.

Her tiny and organized handwriting reminded me of the tidiness of her desk, as if she'd wanted to find in words the peace and safety that life hadn't wanted to grant her.

I tried to swallow his nonsense without choking.

Better still, I pay you. And I pay you very well, which is the only real form of flattery in this whorish world.

There are two things in life you cannot choose. The first is your enemies; the second your family. Sometimes the difference between them is hard to see, but in the end time will show you that the cards you have been dealt could always have been worse.

People who have no life always have to stick their nose in the life of others.

Making money isn't hard in itself… What's hard is to earn it doing something worth devoting one's life to.

The cinema began as an invention for entertaining the illiterate masses. Fifty years on, it's much the same.

Some things have to be seen in the shadows.

Ben invented mathematical theories that even he didn't manage to remember and wrote such bizarre tales of adventure that he ended up destroying them a week after they were finished, embarrassed at the thought that he had penned them.

Sometimes I think that Darwin made a mistake and that in fact man is descended from the pig, because eight out of every ten members of the human race are swine, and as crooked as a hog's tail.

It's only worth staying in bed if you're young and in good company.

I fulfilled all the requirements for Clara Barcelo to send me packing, but I preferred to think that her blindness afforded me a margin for error and that my crime - my complete and pathetic devotion to a woman twice my age, my intelligence, and my height - would remain in the dark.

Humans aren't descended from monkeys. They come from parrots.

I'll see you tomorrow, then, around seven,' concluded Clara. ‘Do you know the address?

I still remember the day my father took me to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books for the first time.

Normal people bring children into the world; we novelists bring books. We are condemned to put our whole lives into them, even though they hardly ever thank us for it. We are condemned to die in their pages and sometimes even to let our books be the ones who, in the end, will take our lives.

I always had this childhood image in the back of my mind of this fantastic place where all the things I liked came from; Orson Welles, jazz, all that stuff. Los Angeles is one of those places where somebodies become nobodies and nobodies become somebody.

Those were years of want and misery, strangely blessed by the sort of peace that the dumb and the disabled inspire in us—halfway between pity and revulsion.

I had never known the pleasure of reading, of exploring the recesses of the soul, of letting myself be carried away by imagination, beauty, and the mystery of fiction and language. For me all those things were born with that novel.

The only thing I can recall is that it rained all day and all night, and that when I asked my father whether heaven was crying, he couldn't bring himself to reply. Six years later my mother's absence remained in the air around us, a deafening silence that I had not yet learned to stifle with words.

There was another silence, of the kind in which gray hairs seem to creep up on you.

Everything can be forgiven in this world, save telling the truth.

Contrary to what you believe, the earth does not revolve around the desires of your crotch.

Those times, against all expectations, were turning out to be good times. Then he felt afraid, because he knew they couldn't last long and those stolen drops of happiness and peace would evaporate.

It is impossible to survive in a prolonged state of reality, at least for a human being.

Once, in my father's bookshop, I heard a regular customer say that few things leave a deeper mark on a reader than the first book that finds its way into his heart.

The air seemed poisoned with fear and hatred. People eyed on another suspiciously, and the streets smelled of a silence that knotted your stomach.

That will be the motto on which we'll build our coexistence: Whatever I say.

That book taught me that by reading, I could live more intensely. It could give me back the sight I had lost. For that reason alone, a book that didn't matter to anyone changed my life.

I don't trust people who say they have a lot of friends. It's a sure sign that they don't really know anyone.

When I reached the street, I could still feel [her] face, her voice, and her smell, deep in my soul. I carried the trace of her lips, of her breath on my skin through streets full of faceless people escaping from offices and shops.

The Cemetery of Forgotten Books is a metaphor, not just for books but for ideas, for language, for knowledge, for beauty, for all the things that make us human, for collecting memory.

I wandered off, walking through streets that seemed emptier than ever, thinking that if I didn't stop, if I kept on walking, I wouldn't notice that the world I thought I knew was no longer there.

Who are the lunatics? The ones who see horror in the heart of their fellow humans and search for peace at any price? Or the ones who pretend they don't see what's going on around them? The world belongs either to lunatics or hypocrites. There are no other races on this earth. You must choose which one to belong to.

Destiny doesn't do home visits... you have to go for it yourself.