"Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it. Every time a book changes hands, every time someone runs his eyes down its pages, its spirit grows and strengthens."
— Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Shadow of the Wind
"Open your eyes, train your ears, use your head. If a mind you have, then use it while you can."
— Haruki Murakami, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
"My soul is a hidden orchestra; I know not what instruments, what fiddle strings and harps, drums and tambourines I sound and clash inside myself. All I hear is the symphony."
— Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet
"Absence, the highest form of presence."
— James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
"Listen: I am ideally happy. My happiness is a kind of challenge. As I wander along the streets and the squares and the paths by the canal, absently sensing the lips of dampness through my worn soles, I carry proudly my ineffable happiness. The centuries will roll by, and schoolboys will yawn over the history of our upheavals; everything will pass, but my happiness, dear, my happiness will remain, in the moist reflection of a streetlamp, in the cautious bend of stone steps that descend into the canal’s black waters, in the smiles of a dancing couple, in everything with which God so generously surrounds human lonliness."
— Vladimir Nabokov, A Letter That Never Reached Russia