Saturday, January 31, 2009


Work, school, home life, petty local politics, I did what I always did in times of stress: I took a deep breath dug inside, and forced myself to stand up taller than ever before. I had been picking myself up by my bootstraps all my life. There wasn't anything about this situation, I told myself, that I couldn't handle. It was only late at night in the library, alone with my thoughts and staring at that blank computer screen, that I began to feel the pressure. It was only then, in my first quiet moment of the day, that I felt my foundation begin to shake. p104

Our downtown is the legacy of the fire of 1931, but it is also the legacy of the farm crisis of the 1980s. When times are tough, you either pull together or fall apart. That's true of families, towns, even people. In the late 1980s, Spencer once again pulled together. And once again, the transformation occurred from the inside out when the merchants on Grand Avenue, many in stores run by their grandparents in 1931, decided they could make the city better. They hired a business manager for the entire downtown retail corridor; they made infrastructure improvements; they spent heavly on advertising even when there seemed to be no money left in the community to spend. p63

[from book "Dewey, the small-town library cat who changed the world," by Vicki Myron, c.2008]

Sunday, January 25, 2009

quotes#597835 Fishing for stars

Anna once explained to me that winning wasn't always about reaching the top of the mountain; sometimes whoever clung longest to the cliff-face without falling was the ultimate winner. "Business seldom has a formal start and definite finish but is more like a constant cliff climb," she'd said. "After you've won, you keep climbing."
"Righto, we'll wait. But as far as I'm concerned, stuff 'em. Plenty more ships in the sea." p145

He was always careful to bend this young and pliant twig slowly, taking great care never to snap it or inhabit the flow of young sap. p46
[a teacher and a student]

note: Fishing for stars, by bryce courtenay, c.2008

Friday, January 23, 2009

quotes#967713 Pride and Prejudice

Their parties abroad were less varied than before; and at home she had a mother and sister whose constant repiningsof the dulness of every thing around them, threw a real gloom over their domestic circle; and though Kitty might in time regain her natural degree of sense, since the disturbers of her brain were removed, her other sister, from whose disposition greater evil might be apprehended, was likely to be hardened in all her folly and assurance, by a situation of such double danger as a watering place and a camp. Upon the whole, therefore, she found, what has been sometimes found before, that an event to which she had looked forward with impatient desire, did not in taking place, bring all the satisfaction she had promised herself. It was consequently necessary to name some other period for the commencement of actual felicity; to have some other point on which her wishes and hopes might be fixed, and by again enjoying the plesaure of anticipation, console herself for the present, and prepare for another disapointment. Her tour of the Lakes was now the object of her happiest thoughts; it was her best consolation for all the uncomfortable hours, which the discontentedness of her Mother and Kitty made inevitable; and could she have included Jane in the scheme, every part of it would have been perfect. p219

To this, Mary vary gravely replied. "Far be it from me, my dear sister, to depreciate such pleasures. They would doubtless be congenial with the generality of female minds. But I confess they would have no charms for me. I should infinitely prefer a book." p206

Friday, January 16, 2009


pride and prejudice, by jane austen, c. 1813 -- recommended by patron gillian christie
quotes#776268 In the winter dark

You get that big church feeling up there in the forest. We were running out of fuel early this winter, so I took the chainsaw with me to feel like I was working and not just farting about. I dawdled the ute along the muddy tracks in the broken light looking for windfalls. It didn't take long to spot a toppled tree. I stopped and got out. The wind sounded like a choir way above. I grabbed the axe from the rear tray, picked my way through the undergrowth with its crush of bracken and creepers and ferns and bright orange fungi and beds of soft wet pungent bark, and when I came to the tree, I scrambled up its great flank and stood panting a moment.
The axe rung out sweet and clear, and I made a bigger notch than I needed to, just to feel the weight of the axe and hear that thock! a few times more. The timber was good and dead, the colour of honey.
I went back for the chainsaw. The air was full of the smells of eucalyptus and gravel mud and dew. p28
[not literary but I like descriptions of nature]

It was dark outside, and cold, and if it hadn't been for the dog and the chops and the stove and our crotcheting, you might have heard the water-snore of the valley, that strange sound of the river moving and the damp air settling on it in the hollows. p17

Monday, January 12, 2009

quotes#196688 Half of a yellow sun

She watched the outline of the mango trees in the next yard; some of them had fruit drooping down like heavy earrings. p185

"You can't write a script in your mind and then force yourself to follow it. You have to let yourself be, Richard," she said quietly. p167

Friday, January 09, 2009


All through the night, by Suzanne Forster et al, c.2001 -- bc6859170
A cursed inheritance, by Kate Ellis, c. 2005 -- bc6859168
The safe house, by Nicci French, c.1998 -- bc6295483
Baby twins: parents needed, by Teresa Carpenter, c.2007 -- bc6157283