version impulse

02 December 2019 - 7:58 p.m.

Could You Repeat That? CLXXVII
Favorite Lines of Recent Reads

My Mexico City Kitchen, Gabriela Camara
Once you hold a taco, you must never let go of it until you finish it. That's actually the only legitimate taco rule.

The Little Swedish Kitchen, Rachel Khoo
There are only so many candlelit lunches I can handle, however cosy they might be.

The Unkindest Tide, Seanan McGuire
The only ones who'd made it over the gate were the Cephali, and they were less "fighting" and more "going through the paces of a stage combat improv class."

The City of Brass, SA Chakraborty
"You're some kind of thief, then?"
"That's a very narrow-minded way of looking at it. I prefer to think of myself as a merchant of delicate tasks."

Shadow and Bone, Leigh Bardugo
He had seen a woman, barefoot and unflinching in her doorway, face down a row of bayonets. He knew the look of a man defending his home with nothing but a rock in his hand.

In the Shadow of Spindrift House, Mira Grant
Throat-punching is surprisingly soothing, when done correctly.

The 100 Most Jewish Foods, Elisa Goldstein et al; Alana Newhouse, ed.
Cleanliness might be next to godliness, but using up all the leftovers? Now you're approaching the incontrovertibly holy.

Jade War, Fonda Lee
"I didn't think you believed in the gods," she said when he straightened.
"I don't," Hilo said, "but the feeling's mutual, so maybe they won't hold it against me."

Suffer the Little Children, Donna Leon
Brunetti wondered if the police--city employees, after all--were allowed to strike, and deciding that they were, he went into Rosa Salva for a coffee and then over to Tarantola to see what new books had come in.

Ash and Quill, Rachel Caine
Power holds always the hidden edge of threat.

Permafrost, Alastair Reynolds
After I shot Vikram we put our things in the car and drove to the airstrip.

The Dark Heart, Joakim Palmkvist
Declaring yourself innocent of everything without prompting tends to indicate the opposite.

A Darker Shade of Magic, VE Schwab
"I apologize for anything I might have done. I was not myself."
"I apologize for shooting you in the leg," said Lila. "I was myself entirely."

Magic for Liars, Sarah Gailey
The thing about me is, I let things go. I let people go. I don't know how to hang on to them--I try, but I hold too tight or not tight enough or something in between and they go. They always go.

In Pursuit of Flavor, Edna Lewis
If you transplant a wild plant to the garden it will never taste the same.

The Merciful Crow, Margaret Owen
"If I didn't know better, I'd think you're worried."
"Worried I'll have to hide your body." That was a half-truth.
Tavin forced a crooked smile around clenched teeth. "You're getting sentimental on me."
"Aye, and that sentiment is 'don't leave a trail of bodies,'" she said, grim.

House of Salt and Sorrows, Erin A Chang
"Besides, I can't miss this party! Camille or you might die, and we'll never have another one."
She scowled. "What? It might be true."

Oracle Year, Charles Soule
"What if he is, indeed, a messenger from God? What then?" Karmapa Chamdo broke in.
Hosiah folded his hands and looked at the man.
"In that case, my friend, I suspect we're probably screwed."

The Course of History: Ten Meals That Changed the World, Struan Stevenson
It was a deeply emotional moment, spoiled only slightly when the Soviet leader handed the sword to Voroshilov who promptly managed to drop it on his own toes.

Gods of Jade and Shadow, Silvia Moreno-Garcia
"Death speaks all languages," he replied.
"But I am not death."
"You wear me like a jewel upon your finger, Casiopea," he said and offered his arm with a practiced aloofness.

Where Cooking Begins, Carla Lalli Music
I've eaten sauteed greens for breakfast because the bunches of Swiss chard were too big to fit in the fridge or spun the oven dial to a roasting temperature before unpacking so I could simply dispatch the squash I bought instead of parking it on my counter, entered into a monogamous relationship with a single pastry dough that can be folded around any type of fruit, year-round, and become "a galette person," a classic marketer's spin designed to obscure the fact that my pie-crimping skills are crap.

Warcross, Marie Lu
But sometimes, you find yourself standing in exactly the right position, wielding exactly the right weapon to hit back. So I hit.

As Bright as Heaven, Susan Meissner
I don't think the return of your humanity means you forget what broke your heart.

The Girl of His Dreams, Donna Leon
Brunetti lived with a woman whose chief weapons were irony and, when escalation was forced upon her, sarcasm; over the years he had noticed his own increasing tendency to dip into the same arsenal.

Siege and Storm, Leigh Bardugo
The Darkling just stared out into the waves. I considered shoving him over the railing. Sure, he was hundreds of years old, but could he swim?

All of Us with Wings, Michelle Ruiz Kell
"Okay," she said. "I'm having a hard time believing this is an actual problem we need to solve, it seems like I've summoned a pair of otherworldy creatures that are going after people from my past."

The Kingdom of Copper, SA Chakraborty
"By the Most High, could you stop acting so jumpy?"
He stared at her. "Someone tried to murder me a week ago."
Nahri rolled her eyes.

Vessel, Lisa A Nichols
"You made it," he said. "I wondered if you'd change your mind."
"I'm sorry, that's not the correct code phrase. If you're my contact, you should be saying something about the rain in Germany at this time of year."

A Better Man, Louise Penny
"I didn't feel the aimed word hit," Beauvoir said, looking up at the embittered old poet. "And go in like a soft bullet."

Knowledge: A Very Short Introduction, Jennifer Nagel
A lucky guess does not amount to knowledge.

Ruin and Rising, Leigh Bardugo
"What did you whisper?" I asked quietly. "To the King."
She watched the others move up the steps, then said, "Na razrusha'ya. E'ya razrushos." I am not ruined. I am ruination.

A Gathering of Shadows, VE Schwab
"I can't keep atoning," Kell whispered into the king's shoulder. "I gave him my life, but you cannot ask me to stop living."

Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers, Sady Doyle
Whether we turn our daughters into vampires, poltergeists, or something else entirely, we persist in finding something corrupt and horrifying and numinous in female puberty. A little girl is less a person than she is a portal. At any moment, she can crack open and something else can come slithering through.

Smoke and Iron, Rachel Caine
"We've opened the gates of hell, you know. And what comes out is our fault."
"Is a fire the fault of the man who drops a match, or the one who spilled the oil all over the floor, knew it, and left it there?"
"Scholar arguments. I'm practical. We started this, and now it's a war."

A Conjuring of Light, VE Schwab
"What are we drinking to?"
"The living," said Rhy.
"The dead," said Alucard and Lila at the same time.
"We're being thorough," added Rhy.

Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women, Geraldine Brooks
One of the main objectives of hijab is to make a woman less eye-catching. In London, a chador drew many more stares than a scarf and coat would have. But for Zahra the chador was like a second skin that couldn't be discarded.

The Dragon Reborn, Robert Jordan, x2
"I'm no hero. I do what I have to do, but I am no hero."
"Most of those we call heroes only did what they had to do. I suppose it will have to be enough."

Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger, Rebecca Traister
It is not civil, it is often profane; calls for civility are designed to protect the powerful by casting them as victims. It is a mass fury: occasionally so frenzied that it makes people nervous. Were it any other way, nothing would ever change.

Call Down the Hawk, Maggie Stiefvater
"You don't just talk to me like that."
Hennessy tapped ash onto the floor. "You don't just creep into people's houses like some mission impossible motherfucker either, and yet here we are."

Trinity Sight, Jennifer Givhan
"I'm a scientist too, mujer. I don't understand why you're so dead set that science and belief are incompatible. Our stories are supported by evolutionary theory. Just because it's not written in a book doesn't make it false."

Heavenly Vegan Dals & Curries," Rakhee Yadav
Whenever I came home from school, if the fragrance of yellow lentils floated to my nose as I walked through the door, my day was made.

Aloha Kitchen, Alana Kysar
When you're surrounded by water, you know a thing or two about preparing seafood.

Home Remedies, Xuan Juliana Wang
Love could be a burden, too.

A Blade So Black, LL McKinney
The girl was a bomb-ass Poet, but not in a Still I Rise way.

About Face, Donna Leon
Like the Furies circling the head of a guilt-crazed Orestes, sarcastic responses crowded on to Brunetti's tongue, but he drove them off and said, instead, 'There's no telling how it happened, sir.'

La Belle Sauvage, Philip Pullman
He was liked when noticed, but not noticed much, and that did him no harm either.

A Terrible Thing to Waste, Harriet A Washington
Descriptions of the vulnerable that focus on economics and exclude race are semantic shrouds that are not only euphemistic but inaccurate. Poverty is certainly a risk factor for environmental exposure, but race is a larger and more consistent one.

Batman/Catwoman: The Wedding Album, Deluxe Edition, Tom King et al
CLAIRE: Do you like your life?
BATMAN: It doesn't matter what I like.
CLAIRE: Well, do you like being the kind of person who says things like..."It doesn't matter what I like"?

The Gaijin Cookbook, Ivan Orkin and Chris Ying
As odd as it sounds, the first time I cooked a decent bowl of ramen was at a Passover dinner in Tokyo.

The Gentleman's Guide to Getting Lucky, Mackenzi Lee
My primary contribution to our circles back home had been making everyone else feel grounded and well-behaved in comparison.

Record of a Spaceborn Few, Becky Chambers
The room fell quiet. Nobody was coming for him.
Nobody was coming for him, and there was nothing more to say.

Normal People, Sally Rooney
Being alone with her is like opening a door away from normal life and then closing it behind him.

The Old Drift, Namwali Serpell
Maybe their love had run all the way through the season allotted to it. Maybe even heartbreak breaks if you give it enough time.

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