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The pleasure of reading is doubled when one lives with another who shares the same books.

Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923) New Zealand-born English short story writer.

Books must be read as deliberately and reservedly as they were written.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) American naturalist, poet and philosopher.

Books are not absolutely dead things, but do contain a certain potency of life in them, to be as active as the soul whose progeny they are; they preserve, as in a vial, the purest efficacy and extraction of the living intellect that bred them.

John Milton (1608-1674) English poet.

The liveliness of literature lies in its exceptionality, in being the individual, idiosyncratic vision of one human being, in which, to our delight and great surprise, we may find our own vision reflected.

Salman Rushdie (1948-?) Anglo-Indian novelist.

All my good reading, you might say, was done in the toilet. There are passages in Ulysses which can be read only in the toilet -- if one wants to extract the full flavor of their content.

Henry Miller (1891-1980) American author.


A book is a part of life, a manifestation of life, just as much as a tree or a horse or a star. It obeys its own rhythms, its own laws, whether it be a novel, a play, or a diary. The deep, hidden rhythm of life is always there, that of the pulse, the heart beat.

Henry Miller (1891-1980) American author.

Be sure that you go to the author to get at his meaning, not to find yours.

John Ruskin (1819-1900) English art critic.

Books are like a mirror. If an ass looks in, you can't expect an angel to look out.

Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860) German philosopher.

To read well, that is, to read true books in a true spirit, is a noble exercise, and one that will task the reader more than any other exercise which the customs of the day esteem. It requires a training such as the athletes underwent, the steady intention almost of the whole life to this object.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) American naturalist, poet and philosopher.

How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book! The book exists for us, perchance, that will explain our miracles and reveal new ones. The at present unutterable things we may find somewhere uttered.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) American naturalist, poet and philosopher.