I like to think of myself as an avid book reader. My book collection has gotten so big, my mom brought it upon herself to buy two bookshelves: one for her and one for me. However, with my collection growing and growing, my books have over taken hers. In one of the rows on my crowded book shelf, are books with their paperback spines cracked, their covers dirty and bent, and pages folded over hundreds and hundreds of times. These, are my Sarah Dessen books. Sarah Dessen is one of the greatest Young Adult authors of all time, at least in my opinion. Her books are relatable to all who read them. From reading my first Sarah Dessen book in the Eighth grade, I truly feel as if I grew up reading her books. And after all of these years and all of her books I've read, I'll never forget the words that stuck with me through all the years, for they will always be a part of me for the rest of my life. Here's a list of a few of these quotes from my favorite Sarah Dessen books that I'll never forget.
1. "Life is full of screw-ups. You're supposed to fail sometimes. It's a required part of the human existence."
Along for the Ride
2. "There comes a times when the world gets quiet and the only thing left is your own heart. So you'd better learn the sound of it. Otherwise you'll never understand what it's saying."
3. "Music is a total constant. That's why we have such a strong visceral connection to it, you know? Because a song can take you back instantly to a moment, or a place, or even a person. No matter what else has changed in your world, that one song says the same, just like that moment."
4. "No matter how much times has passed, these things still affect us and the world we live in. If you don't pay attention to the past, you'll never understand the future. It's all linked together."
5. "This is the problem with dealing with someone who is actually a good listener. THey don't jump in on your sentences, saving you from actually finished them, or talk over you, allowing what you do manage to get out to be lost or altered in transit. Instead, they wait, so you have to keep going."
6. "I don't believe in failure, because simply by saying you've failed, you've admitted you attempted. And anyone who attempts is not a failure. Those who truly fail in my eyes are the ones who never try at all. The ones who sit on the couch and whine and moan and wait for the world to change for them.
7. "But it's strange, when you've always been told something is true, like the moon will come back. You need proof. And while you wait, you feel the entire balance of your world just tipping. It's crazy. But when it's over, and it does come back, that's the best, because it's all you want, everything narrows to just that. It's this great rush, like for that one second everything's okay with the world again. It's amazing."
8. "It was always late at night, when everything and everyone else was quiet, that those voices would rise like ghosts, soft and haunting, filling your mind until sleep finally came."
Keeping the Moon
9. "It's easier to be lost than found. It's the reason we're always searching and rarely discovered–so many locks, not enough keys."
10. "My point is, there are a lot of people in the world. No one ever sees everything that same way you do; it just doesn't happen. So when you find one person who gets a couple of things, especially if they're the important ones...you might as well hold onto them. You know?"
11. "What is family? They were the people who claimed you. In good, in bad, in parts or in whole, they were the ones who showed up, who stayed in there, regardless. It wasn't just about blood relations or shared chromosomes, but something wider, bigger. We had many families over times. Our family of origin, the family we created, and the groups you moved through wile all of this was happening: friends, lovers, sometimes even strangers. None of them perfect, and we couldn't expect to be. You can't make any one person your world. The trick was to take what each could give you and build your world from it."
Lock and Key
12. "The future was one thing that could never be broken, because it had not yet had the chance to be anything."
13. "It's a weird kind of loneliness, feeling that some of my closest friends didn't actually know I existed."
14. "When faced with the scariest of things, all you want to do is turn away, hide in your own invisible place. But you can't. That's why it's not only important for us to be seen, but to have someone to look for us as well."
15. "In any moment, there were so many chances for paths to cross and people to clash, come together, or do any number of things in between. It was amazing we could live at all, knowing all that could occur purely by chance. But what was the alternative?"
16. "It's funny how one summer can change everything. It must be something about the heat and the smell of chlorine, fresh0cut grass and honeysuckle, asphalt sizzling after late-day thunderstorms, the steam rising while everything drips around it. Something about long, lazy days and whirring air conditioners and bright plastic flip-flops from the drugstore thwacking down the street. Something about the fall being so close, another year, another Christmas, another beginning. So much in one summer, stirring up like the storms that crest at the end of each day, blowing out all the heat and dirt to leave everything gasping and cool. Everyone can reach back to one summer and lay a finger to it, finding the exact point when everything changed."
17. "But maybe it isn't so bad. You can't love anyone that way more than once in a lifetime. It's too hard and it hurts too much when it ends. The first boy is always the hardest to get over. It's just the way it is."
18. "Sometimes things don't turn out the way you want them to, Haven. Sometimes the people you chose to believe are wrong."
19. "Everything looks different when you're older, not staring up at the world but down upon it."
20. "There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment."
21. "It's just that...I just think that some things are meant to be broken. Imperfect. Chaotic. It's the universe's way if providing contrast, you know? There have to be a few holes in the road. It's how life is."
22. "It's all in the view. That's what I mean about forever, too. For any one of our forever could end in an hour, or a hundred years from now. You never know for sure, so you'd better make every second count."
The Truth About Forever
23. "I am coming to terms with the fact that loving someone requires a leap of faith, and that a soft landing is never guaranteed."
24. "Some things don't last forever, but some things do. Like a good song, or a good book, a good memory you can take out and unfold in your darkest times, pressing down on the corners and peering in close, hoping you still recognize the person you see there."
25. "Holding people away from you, and denying yourself love, that doesn't make you strong. If anything, it makes you weaker. Because you're doing it out of fear."
26. "Home wasn't a set house, or a single town on a map. It was wherever the people who loved you were, whenever you were together. Not a place, but a moment, and then another, building on each other like bricks to create a solid shelter that you take with you for your entire life wherever you may go."
27. "It was amazing how you could get so far from where you'd planned, and yet find it was exactly where you needed to be."
28. "But in the real world, you couldn't really just split a family down the middle, mom on one side, dad on the other, with the child equally divided between. It was like when you ripped a piece of paper into two: no matter how you tried, the seams never fit exactly right again. It was what you couldn't see, those tiniest of pieces, that were lost in the severing, and their absence kept everything from being complete.
What Happened to Goodbye
I highly recommend reading ANY of Sarah Dessen's books, if you haven't read any already. You can find a majority of her books in bookstores anywhere, but if any of these quotes sparked an interest, you can find out more about her books here!