• You couldn't relive your life, skipping the awful parts, without losing what made it worthwhile. You had to accept it as a whole--like the world, or the person you loved

    Stewart O'Nan
  • She had a vision of the two of them trapped on a tiny raft surrounded by miles of open water. It would be a kind of test, like surviving on a desert island--but that's what a marriage was, wasn't it? They would have to help each other or die

    Stewart O'Nan
  • They should.""Should be like a wood bee," she said.It was a private joke, a mocking appreciation of the slipperiness of even the simplest hope, a nonce catchphrase like so many others lifted from favorite movies or TV shows that served as a rote substitute for conversation and bound them like shut-in twins, each other's best and, most often, only audience

    Stewart O'Nan
  • I'm sorry you don't like coming back here," her mother often said, to cap whatever petty dust-up they'd had. How could Emily explain: it wasn't her mother or Kersey she'd disowned, but her earlier self, that strange, ungrateful girl who strove to be first at everything and threw tantrums when she failed

    Stewart O'Nan
  • For most of her life she just expected things would work out, that people would be kind. Now she recognized her good fortune for what it was. She'd been lucky in so much, it had left her woefully unprepared for old age

    Stewart O'Nan
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