American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Contemporary · Excerpt · Fiction · LGBT · Novel · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · Semi-autobiographical · Southern Gothic · Southern Literature

Truman Capote

We are alone, darling child, terribly, isolated each from the other; so fierce is the world’s ridicule we cannot speak or show our tenderness; for us, death is stronger than life, it pulls like a wind through the dark, all our cries burlesqued in joyless laughter; and with the garbage of loneliness stuffed down us… Continue reading Truman Capote

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British-American Culture · British-American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Contemporary · Excerpt · Fiction · Historical Fiction · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · Young Adult

Meg Rosoff

Nevertheless, I can tell you that you will awake someday to find that your life has rushed by at a speed at once impossible and cruel. The most intense moments will seem to have occurred only yesterday and nothing will have erased the pain and pleasure, the impossible intensity of love and its dog-leaping happiness,… Continue reading Meg Rosoff

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African-American Culture · African-American Literature · Classic · Collection · Coming of Age · Excerpt · Fiction · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · Short Fiction · Short Stories · Short Story

James Baldwin

I couldn’t believe it: but what I mean by that is that I couldn’t find any room for it anywhere inside me. I had kept it outside me for a long time. I hadn’t wanted to know. — James Baldwin, from “Sonny’s Blues” (1957), Going to Meet the Man. (Vintage; Reissue edition, April 25, 1995)… Continue reading James Baldwin

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Excerpt · Fiction · Novel · Paraphrase · Passage · Postmodernism · Quote · Realism

J.D. Salinger

Anyway, I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little kids, and nobody’s around – nobody big, I mean – except me. And I’m standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if… Continue reading J.D. Salinger

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Contemporary · Excerpt · Fiction · LGBT · Novel · Paraphrase · Passage · Queer · Quote · Realism · Young Adult

Peter Cameron

I often feel like I want to think something but I can’t find the language that coincides with the thoughts, so it remains felt, not thought. — Peter Cameron, Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You; A Novel (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2007)

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Excerpt · Fiction · Paraphrase · Passage · Postmodernism · Quote · Realism

J.D. Salinger

Among other things, you’ll find that you’re not the first person who was ever confused and frightened and even sickened by human behavior. You’re by no means alone on that score, you’ll be excited and stimulated to know. Many, many men have been just as troubled morally and spiritually as you are right now. Happily,… Continue reading J.D. Salinger

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Adult · American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Coming of Age · Contemporary · Drama · Excerpt · Fiction · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · Young Adult

Janet Fitch

Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space. An intelligent, sensitive person is the exception, the very great exception. If you expect to find people… Continue reading Janet Fitch

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