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BOOKS (LAST LINES)
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[ Also see Books Books (First Lines) Books (Quotes) Quotations ]

"Oh, my girls, however long you may live, I never can wish you a greater happiness than this!"
      - Louisa May Alcott, Little Women [1868]

With the Gardiners, they were always on the most intimate terms. Darcy, as well as Elizabeth, really loved them; and they were both ever sensible of the warmest gratitude towards the persons who, by bringing her into Derbyshire, had been the means of uniting them.
      - Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice [1813]

Mrs. Dashwood was prudent enough to remain at the cottage, without attempting a removal to Delaford; and fortunately for Sir John and Mrs. Jennings, when Marianne was taken from them, Margaret had reached an age highly suitable for dancing, and not very ineligible for being supposed to have a lover. Between Barton and Delaford, there was that constant communication which strong family affection would naturally dictate;--and among the merits and the happiness of Elinor and Marianne, let it not be ranked as the least considerable, that though sisters, and living almost within sight of each other, they could live without disagreement between themselves, or producing coolness between their husbands.
      - Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility [1811]

"From the Land of Oz," said Dorothy, gravely, "And here is Toto, too,. And oh, Aunt Em! I'm so glad to be at home again!"
      - Lyman Frank Baum,
        The Wonderful Wizard of Oz [1899] (ch. XXIV)

And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
      - Bible, Old Testament, Malachi
         (ch. IV, v. 6)

Our children, Edward, Agnes, and little Mary, promise well; their education, for the time being, is chiefly committed to me; and they shall want no good thing that a mother's care can give.
  Our modest income is amply sufficient for our requirements; and by practising the economy we learnt in harder times, and never attempting to imitate our richer neighbours, we manage not only to enjoy comfort and contentment ourselves, but to have every year something to lay by for our children, and something to give to those who need it.
    And now I think I have said sufficient.
      - Anne Bronte (used pseudonym Acton Bell),
        Agnes Grey [1847]

St. John is unmarried: he never will marry now. . . . The last letter I received from him drew from my eves human tears, and yet filled my heart with divine joy: he anticipated his sure reward, his incorruptible crown. I know that a stranger's hand will write to me next, to say that the good and faithful servant has been called at length into the joy of his Lord. And why weep for this? No fear of death will darken St. John's last hour: his mind will be unclouded, his heart will be undaunted, his hope will be sure, his faith steadfast. His own words are a pledge of this - "My Master," he says, "has forewarned me. Daily He announces more distinctly,--'Surely I come quickly!' and hourly I more eagerly respond,--'Amen; even so come, Lord Jesus!'"
      - Charlotte Bronte (used pseudonym Currer Bell),
        Jane Eyre [1847]

I lingered round them, under that benign sky; watched the moths fluttering among the heath, and hare-bells; listened to the soft wind breathing through the grass; and wondered how anyone could ever imagine unquiet slumbers, for the sleepers in that quiet earth.
      - Emily Jane Bronte (used pseudonym Ellis Bell),
        Wuthering Heights [1847]

Such is my friend's latest development. He would not, it is true, run much chance at present of trying to found a College of Spiritual Pathology, but I must leave the reader to determine whether there is not a strong family likeness between the Ernest of the College of Spiritual Pathology and the Ernest who will insist on addressing the next generation rather than his own. He says he trusts that there is not, and takes the sacrament duly once a year as a sop to Nemesis lest he should again feel strongly upon any subject. It rather fatigues him, but "no man's opinions," he sometimes says, "can be worth holding unless he knows how to deny them easily and gracefully upon occasion in the cause of charity." In politics he is a Conservative so far as his vote and interest are concerned. In all other respects he is an advanced Radical. His father and grandfather could probably no more understand his state of mind than they could understand Chinese, but those who know him intimately do not know that they wish him greatly different from what he actually is.
      - Samuel Butler (2), The Way of All Flesh [1903]   BUY VARYING HARE USED BOOK  

Lastly, she pictured to herself how this same little sister of hers would, in the after-time, be herself a grown woman; and how she would keep, through all her riper years, the simple and loving heart of her childhood: and how she would gather about her other little children, and make their eyes bright and eager with many a strange tale, perhaps even with the dream of Wonderland of long ago: and how she would feel with all their simple sorrows, and find a pleasure in all their simple joys, remembering her own child-life, and the happy summer days.
      - Lewis Carroll (pseudonym of Charles L. Dodgson),
        Alice's Adventures in Wonderland [1865]   BUY VARYING HARE USED BOOK  

"Now, Kitty, let's consider who it was that dreamed it all. This is a serious question, my dear, and you should not go on licking your paw like that--as if Dinah hadn't washed you this morning!
  You see, Kitty, it must have been either me or the Red King. He was part of my dream, of course--but then I was part of his dream, too! Was it the Red King, Kitty? You were his wife, my dear, so you ought to know--oh, Kitty, do help to settle it! I'm sure your paw can wait!" But the provoking kitten only began on on the other paw, and pretended it hadn't heard the question.
    Which do you think it was?
      - Lewis Carroll (pseudonym of Charles L. Dodgson),
        Through the Looking Glass [1872]

Overhead, without any fuss, the stars were going out.
      - Arthur C. Clarke,
        The Nine Billion Names of God,
        a short story

Marlow ceased, and sat apart, indistinct and silent, in the pose of a meditating Buddha. Nobody moved for a time. "We have lost the first of the ebb," said the Director suddenly. I raised my head. The offing was barred by a black bank of clouds, and the tranquil waterway leading to the uttermost ends of the earth flowed sombre under an overcast sky--seemed to lead into the heart of an immense darkness.
      - Joseph Conrad (Teodor Josef Konrad Korzeniowski),
        Heart of Darkness [1902]

'Who knows? He is gone, inscrutable at heart, and the poor girl is leading a sort of soundless, inert life in Stein's house. Stein has aged greatly of late. He feels it himself, and says often that he is "preparing to leave all this; preparing to leave . . ." while he waves his hand sadly at his butterflies.'
      - Joseph Conrad (Teodor Josef Konrad Korzeniowski),
        Lord Jim [1900]

Her hands were stretched out imploringly. I said, childishly disconcerted:
  "But, Rita, how can I help using words of love to you? They come of themselves on my lips!"
    "They come! Ah! But I shall seal your lips with the thing itself," she said. "Like this. . . ."
      - Joseph Conrad (Teodor Josef Konrad Korzeniowski),
        The Arrow of Gold [1919]   BUY VARYING HARE USED BOOK  

In the midst of the awful stillness with which such a burst of feeling, coming as it did, from the two most renowned warriors of that region, was received, Tamenund lifted his voice to disperse the multitude.
  "It is enough", he said. "Go, children of the Lenape, the anger of the Manitou is not done. Why should Tamenund stay? The pale faces are masters of the earth, and the time of the red men has not yet come again. My day has been too long. In the morning I esaw the sons of Unamis happy and strong; and yet, before the has come, have I lived to see the last warrior of the wise race of the Mohicans".
      - James Fenimore Cooper,
        The Last of the Mohicans [1826]

"It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known."
      - Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities [1859]

I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place; and, as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so, the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her.
      - Charles Dickens, Great Expectations [1861]

Within the altar of the old village church there stands a white marble tablet, which bears as yet but one word: "AGNES." There is no coffin in that tomb; and may it be many, many years, before another name is placed above it! But, if the spirits of the Dead ever come back to earth, to visit spots hallowed by the love--the love beyond the grave--of those whom they knew in life, I believe that the shade of Agnes sometimes hovers round that solemn nook. I believe it none the less because that nook is in a Church, and she was weak and erring.
      - Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist [1838]

And now, as I close my task, subduing my desire to linger yet, these faces fade away. But one face, shining on me like a Heavenly light by which I see all other objects, is above them and beyond them all. And that remains. I turn my head, and see it, in its beautiful serenity, beside me. My lamp burns low, and I have written far into the night; but the dear presence, without which I were nothing, bears me company. O Agnes, O my soul, so may thy face be by me when I close my life indeed; so may I, when realities are melting from me, like the shadows which I now
  dismiss, still find thee near me, pointing upward!
      - Charles Dickens,
        The Personal History of David Copperfield [1850]

She too had been greatly agitated that day, and at night she was taken ill again. But she was so happy--and so unexpectedly happy--that she was almost frightened of her happiness. Seven years, only seven years! At the beginning of their happiness at some moments they were both ready to look on those seven years as though they were seven days. He did not know that the new life would not be given him for nothing, that he would have to pay dearly for it, that it would cost him great striving, great suffering.
  But that is the beginning of a new story--the story of the gradual renewal of a man, the story of his gradual regeneration, of his passing from one world into another, of his initiation into a new unknown life. That might be the subject of a new story, but our present story is ended.
      - Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment

"Certainly we shall all rise again, certainly we shall see each other and shall tell each other with joy and gladness all that has happened!" Alyosha answered, half laughing, half enthusiastic.
  "Ah, how splendid it will be!" broke from Kolya.
    "Well, now we will finish talking and go to his funeral dinner. Don't be put out at our eating pancakes- it's a very old custom and there's something nice in that!" laughed Alyosha. "Well, let us go! And now we go hand in hand."
      "And always so, all our lives hand in hand! Hurrah for Karamazov!" Kolya cried once more rapturously, and once more boys took up his exclamation:
        "Hurrah for Karamazov!"
      - Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

Planchet obtained from Rochefort the rank of sergeant in the Piedmont regiment. M. Bonacieux lived on very quietly, wholly ignorant of what had become of his wife, and caring very little about it. One day he had the imprudence to recall himself to the memory of the cardinal. The cardinal had him informed that he would provide for him so that he should never want for anything in future. In fact, M. Bonacieux, having left his house at seven o'clock in the evening to go to the Louvre, never appeared again in the Rue des Fossoyeurs; the opinion of those who seemed to be best informed was that he was fed and lodged in some royal castle, at the expense of his generous Eminence.
      - Alexandre Dumas pere, The Three Musketeers [1844],
        (also titled Les Trois Mousquetaires)

So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.
      - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby [1925],
        also Fitzgerald's epitaph

Yeobright had, in fact, found his vocation in the career of an itinerant open-air preacher and lecturer on morally unimpeachable subjects; . . . . He left alone creeds and systems of philosophy, finding enough and more than enough to occupy his tongue in the opinions and actions common to all good men. Some believed him, and some believed not; some said that his words were commonplace, others complained of his want of theological doctrine; while others again remarked that it was well enough for a man to take to preaching who could not see to do anything else. But everywhere he was kindly received, for the story of his life had become generally known.
      - Thomas Hardy, The Return of the Native [1878]


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