We all have them though, the random, little things that just kind of tickle us inside, make us squeal, make us laugh out loud every time, make us mark the page to come back, or just make us extra happy for no real reason when we read them, so here's my hodge-podge list, complete with quotes and everything!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted at The Broke and the Bookish. This week was a freebie, so my topic is:
Top Ten Random, Little Things that Make Me Extra Happy in Books
10. Hilariously Miserable Dinner Scenes
“I didn’t just lose my job, like, ‘Oops, where’d my job go?'” from American Beauty may always be the best dinner scene, and I will never stop laughing at it, but I’ve come across one or two good dinner scenes in books, too.
And as the tension grew, Maribel began to go a bit heavy on the wine, which probably wasn’t a good idea on an empty stomach. But it numbed her a bit, eased her discomfort some, and made it sting a little less when he shot another question down and glanced at the back door, as though he was judging the distance to it, calculating how long it might take to get there.
“More wine?” she asked sarcastically, pouring more into the full glass he hadn’t touched, until it nearly overflowed.
-Soraya Cage, To Summon a Vampire
9. When Characters Acknowledge Cliches
Always funny even though I do admit to liking certain cliches.
“Don’t quote poetry, Vance. Being a vampire is pretentious enough.”
-In Darkness Bound, Christine Price
8. Epic Character Descriptions
You know, the ones that are about more than mere looks or personality traits, the ones that make me wonder how someone would describe me. And if someone did describe me, I’d want it to be this beautiful! (Just for reference, the character in the quote is a flying trapeze artist.)
Remy stilled. It was impossible not to notice when he went motionless, because he was usually so filled with energy. He was rarely truly still. Some part of him was always swinging through the air at high speed, even when he was sitting next to me.
-Girl on a Wire, Gwenda Bond
And snark. Gotta love it.
“That dress I had on was pretty. It’s a pity I had to rip it apart.”
“Yeah. It was entertaining to watch though.”
“To watch?” I fold my arms over my chest. “Weren’t you wrestling on the floor at the time?”
A grin lifts one side of Ryn’s mouth. “I can multitask, remember? And girls tearing their clothes off is something I try not to miss.”
-Rachel Morgan, The Faerie Guardian
6. Lines that Perfectly Capture How I Feel About the Night
Nyctophilia (n.) love of darkness or night; finding relaxation or comfort in the darkness. That’s me. I have that. I love the night. There’s a magic in it that words could never truly do justice, but I still love finding quotes and knowing there’s someone else out there who feels it, too.
Insomniacs know that there is something about the night. A darkness, an energy, a mystery that shrouds things. It hides things at the same time as it illuminates them. It is this thing that allows us to examine our thoughts in a way that we can’t during the day, It is this thing that brings truth and clarity.
-Courtney Cole, Nocte
5. Old-Timey Speech/Writing (AKA The Much Underrated Trait of Eloquence)
I’m just a sucker for it, whether it’s a character in a fictional book, the author’s writing style, or a person in real life. Pro tip: If you’re thinking about wooing me, this is the way to do it. (Oh, W.C. Coup, You had me at affray of a fatal character. And a trifle irregular. And served to dampen my sense of admiration. And basically every sentence in your book even though I couldn’t include them all in this post.)
This was the first time in my life that I ever looked upon the face of the dead or witnessed any affray of a fatal character. The shock and shuddering which it caused me were so great that I actually attempted to leave the show business, but was soon back again into the “current of destiny” and became inured to these exciting scenes.
-W.C. Coup, Sawdust & Spangles: Stories & Secrets of the Circus
4. When Authors Find Beauty in Something I Never Considered Beautiful
I love finding beauty in everything that I can and seeing things in different ways.
I watched intently because Daniel was a vision of violent power and grace when he worked. The crowd fell like dominoes as he twisted and whirled that sword in an arc that left not one of the men untouched. Blood began to splatter in a neat circle, saturating the ground around him. Half the men had already fallen.
Daniel stopped, his head down, sword held low and he looked over at me and winked.
-Lexi Blake, Steal the Sun
3. When Characters Make Fun of Other Characters for Brooding
I considered making this #1, you know, reason for the post and all that, but alas, it’s actually #3. I do so love it when characters good-naturedly tease other characters for brooding though. (But don’t get me wrong, I love the brooding characters, too!)
Daniel was still staring at his itinerary. “And what the hell does this mean? This asshole has me brooding every day from seven to nine.”
A little smile curled Dev’s lips up. “That would be your free time.”
-Lexi Blake, Steal the Day
2. Absurd Humor
The best kind of humor there is! Ok I don’t know if that’s actually what it’s called or if it has a name, but that’s what I call it. (And The Princess Bride is chock full of it!)
“Skin?” asked the Prince.
“Marbleish,” answered the Queen.
“Number or color?” asked the Queen.
-William Goldman, The Princess Bride
1. Beautiful Writing
I know it’s not the most original thing on my list, so does it really deserve the number one spot? YES IT DOES. I JUST LOVE IT SO MUCH. Any book I review will pretty much instantly get an extra star if it has beautiful writing. In fact, I love it so much that I couldn’t pick just one quote and ruined the uniformity of the post. It’s a justifiable reason. Beautiful writing is always a justifiable reason. (I can see it now: “Why did you murder that man, Kristen?” “…Beautiful writing?” “You’re free to go.”)
Walk was too harmless a word for the way he moved. He drifted like a slinking shadow, each movement melting seamlessly into the next.
-Annette Marie, Chase the Dark
His movements were all power and grace. The shadows in the room welcomed him, absorbing his form even when she swore the darkness wasn’t deep enough to hide him.
-Annette Marie, Yield the Night
It was burning there in her eyes, the kind of love that turns your insides into glass and the person you love into stone. Every word, every sigh, every pathetic sound I made had the potential to break her or keep her safe but when it came to the two of us, I couldn’t figure out how to do one without the other.
-Laekan Zea Kemp, The Boy in Her Dreams