Reading is a conversation. All books talk. But a good book listens as well.

— Mark Haddon

The most stunning Mark Haddon quotes that are glad to read

I was born too late for steam trains and a lazy eye meant I'd never be an astronaut.

53

It wasn't about believing this or that, it wasn't even about good and evil and right and wrong, it was about finding the strength to bear the discomfort that came with being in the world.

43

And it occurred to him that there were two parts to being a better person.

One part was thinking about other people. The other part was not giving a toss what other people thought.

36

I like dogs. You always know what a dog is thinking. It has four moods. Happy, sad, cross and concentrating. Also, dogs are faithful and they do not tell lies because they cannot talk.

27

Most adults, unlike most children, understand the difference between a book that will hold them spellbound for a rainy Sunday afternoon and a book that will put them in touch with a part of themselves they didn't even know existed.

26

On the fifth day, which was a Sunday, it rained very hard.

I like it when it rains hard. It sounds like white noise everywhere, which is like silence but not empty.

24

Everyone has learning difficulties, because learning to speak French or understanding relativity is difficult.

16

No one wants to know how clever you are.

They don't want an insight into your mind, thrilling as it might be. They want an insight into their own.

14

You love someone, you've got to let something go.

13

At twenty life was like wrestling an octopus.

Every moment mattered. At thirty it was a walk in the country. Most of the time your mind was somewhere else. By the time you got to seventy, it was probably like watching snooker on the telly.

13

Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away.

I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.

13

Every life is narrow. Our only escape is not to run away, but to learn to love the people we are and the world in which we find ourselves.

11

About Mark Haddon

Quotes 102 sayings
Nationality English
Profession Novelist
Birthday October 16

People say that you always have to tell the truth.

But they do not mean this because you are not allowed to tell old people that they are old and you are not allowed to tell people if they smell funny or if a grown-up has made a fart. And you are not allowed to say, 'I don't like you,' unless that person has been horrible to you.

10

From a good book, I want to be taken to the very edge. I want a glimpse into that outer darkness.

10

For me, disability is a way of getting some extremity, some kind of very difficult situation, that throws an interesting light on people.

10

I knew there was a story; once you find a dog with a fork through it, you know there's a story there.

7

Use your imagination, and you'll see that even the most narrow, humdrum lives are infinite in scope if you examine them with enough care.

6

Children simply don't make the distinction;

a book is either good or bad. And some of the books they think are good are very, very bad indeed.

6

I don't remember deciding to become a writer.

You decide to become a dentist or a postman. For me, writing is like being gay. You finally admit that this is who you are, you come out and hope that no one runs away.

5

Most of my work consisted of crossing out. Crossing out was the secret of all good writing.

5

There was a time in my life when I was going in and out of houses that were extraordinarily different - from a working-class terrace in Northampton to the homes of friends who were really very wealthy. It was quite an odd position to be in, I realise looking back, and quite a nice one.

5

I don't mean that literary fiction is better than genre fiction, On the contrary; novels can perform two functions and most perform only one.

4

My book has a very simple surface, but there are layers of irony and paradox all the way through it.

4

...and I went into the garden and lay down and looked at the stars in the sky and made myself negligible.

4

I am atheist in a very religious mould.

I'm always asking myself the big questions. Where did we come from? Is there a meaning to all of this? When I find myself in church, I edit the hymns as I sing them.

4

If kids like a picture book, they're going to read it at least 50 times.

Read anything that often, and even minor imperfections start to feel like gravel in the bed.

4

I think the U.K. is too small to write about from within it and still make it seem foreign and exotic and interesting.

4

... why I like timetables, because they make sure I don't get lost in time.

3

Siobhan said that when you are writing a book you have to include some descriptions of things. I said that I could take photographs and put them in the book. But she said the idea of a book was to describe things using words so that people could read them and make a picture in their own head.

3

Writing for children is bloody difficult;

books for children are as complex as their adult counterparts, and they should therefore be accorded the same respect.

3

As a kid, I didn't read a great deal of fiction, and I've forgotten most of what I did read.

3

..and only sticks and stones can break my bones.

3

Find the extraordinary inside the ordinary.

3

Bore children, and they stop reading.

There's no room for self-indulgence or showing off or setting the scene.

2

Science and literature give me answers. And they ask me questions I will never be able to answer.

2

That's important to me, to find the extraordinary inside the ordinary.

2

I think most writers feel like they're on the outside looking in much of the time. All of us feel, to a certain extent, alienated from the stuff going on around us.

1

What I love about the theatre is that it's always metaphorical.

It's like going back to being a kid again, and we're all pretending in a room. Sometimes, when the pretending really works, I find it much, much more moving than something on film.

1

Fiction that responds to recent world events is a hostage to fortune because all momentous events look very different a year, two years, three years later.

0

Many children's writers don't have children of their own.

0

It exasperated her sometimes. The way men could be so sure of themselves. They put words together like sheds or shelves and you could stand on them they were so solid. And those feelings which overwhelmed you in the small hours turned to smoke.

0

I want my name to mean me.

0

But I said that you could still want something that is very unlikely to happen.

0

I do not like strangers because I do not like people I have never met before.

They are hard to understand.

0

And then I thought that I had to be like Sherlock Holmes and I had to detach my mind at will to a remarkable degree so that I did not notice how much it was hurting inside my head.

0

B is for bestseller.

0

And because there is something they can’t see people think it has to be special, because people always think there is something special about what they can’t see, like the dark side of the moon, or the other side of a black hole, or in the dark when they wake up at night and they’re scared.

0

All the other children at my school are stupid.

Except I'm not meant to call them stupid, even though this is what they are.

0

And Father said, "Christopher, do you understand that I love you?" And I said "Yes," because loving someone is helping them when they get into trouble, and looking after them, and telling them the truth, and Father looks after me when I get into trouble, like coming to the police station, and he looks after me by cooking meals for me, and he always tells me the truth, which means that he loves me.

0
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