Book picks for the week | LitBash 50

Need something to read, but don’t know to chose? Try writers who were…

Born this week:


Stefan Zweig, Austria

“It is usual for a woman, even though she may ardently desire to give herself to a man, to feign reluctance, to simulate alarm or indignation. She must be brought to consent by urgent pleading, by lies, adjurations, and promises. I know that only professional prostitutes are accustomed to answer such an invitation with a perfectly frank assent – prostitutes, or simple-minded, immature girls.”

Alberto Moravia, Italy
“An uncertain evil causes anxiety because, at the bottom of one’s heart, one goes on hoping till the last moment that it may not be true; a certain evil, on the other hand, instills, for a time, a kind of dreary tranquillity.”

Konstantin Simonov, Russia
“I don’t know how others may see it, but for me, human friendship is the most precious feeling on earth. That feeling has its greatest strength when times are hard; and in war, times are very hard. “

Louisa May Alcott, USA
“Women have been called queens for a long time, but the kingdom given them isn’t worth ruling.”

Jonathan Swift, UK

“I have one word to say upon the subject of profound writers, who are grown very numerous of late; and I know very well the judicious world is resolved to list me in that number. I conceive therefore, as to the business of being profound, that it is with writers as with wells – a person with good eyes may see to the bottom of the deepest, provided any water be there: and often when there is nothing in the world at the bottom besides dryness and dirt, though it be but a yard and a-half under-ground, it shall pass, however, for wondrous deep upon no wiser reason than because it is wondrous dark.”

Mark Twain, USA
“I haven’t a particle of confidence in a man who has no redeeming petty vices whatsoever.”

Lucy Maud Montgomery, Canada

Joseph Conrad (Born Józef Korzeniowski), Poland / UK
“It’s only those who do nothing that make no mistakes.”

Died this week:


Conrad Meyer, Switzerland

Oscar Wilde, UK
“I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best.”

Donatien Alphone Francois de Sade (Marquis de Sade), France
The law which attempts a man’s life [capital punishment] is impractical, unjust, inadmissible. It has never repressed crime—for a second crime is every day committed at the foot of the scaffold.”

Namik Kemal, Turkey

Edmond Rostand, France
“To joke in the face of danger is the supreme politeness, a delicate refusal to cast oneself as a tragic hero.”

Robert Louis Stevenson, UK
“In every part and corner of our life, to lose oneself is to be a gainer; to forget oneself is to be happy.”

Gustav Meyrink, Austria
“I have not let myself be stultified by science, whose highest goal is to furnish a `waiting room’, which it would be best to tear down.”

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