Most highlighted book quotes

Amazon Kindle has a feature where popular sentences of eBooks are underlined, showing parts that multiple readers have highlighted.

This is basically the best gift ever for a writer: if you’re ever feeling down, go and flick through your eBook and see what people like. It’s great.

A couple of my books are discounted on Amazon right now (The Quiet at the End of the World and The Loneliest Girl are £1.89 on Kindle, and £4 in paperback) so I thought I’d share the quotes that were highlighted in my oldest books (The Next Together has been out for six years now!)

The Next Together

  • To be honest, if I stopped joking around I’m pretty sure I’ll go to bed and never get up again. I’m only barely holding onto my sanity right now through a series of poorly thought-out puns.
  • All throughout history they had been doing this, finding and loving each other and being ripped apart before they even had a chance to live.
  • I don’t think there are any true heroes. Just people who ignore their survival instincts long enough to do something incredibly foolhardy.
  • It doesn’t do any good to mourn for someone who is gone. They don’t care. Their story has finished.
  • Will you marry me, Katherine? I want us to spend this life and the next together.
  • “Did you have nightmares about it?’ He nodded hopefully and then said, completely seriously, “It was traumatising.”
  • “A pencil. A PENCIL,” he said, with growing horror, staring into empty space as if at the horrific vision she had laid before him. He shook his head. “Some people just want society to collapse.”
  • Coffee isn’t the only hot thing waiting for you in my office. > Someone hot? What’s Mick doing in your office? (JOKE JOKE I’M ON MY WAY)

The Last Beginning

  • She wasn’t a dazzling lead protagonist in some adventure film. She was the gay best friend.
  • Phosphenes, they were called – the sparks of colour that lit up your vision, the stars that appeared in the darkness.
  • Time travel is like knitting. You have to build on what’s come before, and weave the strands together until it becomes something beautiful.

The Loneliest Girl in the Universe

  • Some days it’s hard to remember the exciting parts. I get stuck in the memories. It’s hard to focus on the future when the past is so distracting.
  • My life is a gambling chip thrown carelessly across the universe in the hope it’ll land somewhere my descendants can survive.
  • Love takes so much energy, and it just leads to pain. I think it’s probably best for people to be self sufficient. If I was strong enough to be independent, then I wouldn’t be so desperately lonely, I’m sure of it. I just want someone who holds on. Someone who won’t ever let me go, whatever tries to tear us apart. Is that too much to ask?
  • It’s like I’m understanding everything differently now because I’m looking at it from your perspective. I want to see your reaction to everything, from the rare to the commonplace.
  • Things on Earth I want to experience most: Quicksand – how often do you usually get stuck in this stuff? A few times a month? It seems to happen all the time in films!
  • Just remember, J, you’re coping with everything the best way you can, and that’s all that matters. Don’t ever think you aren’t strong.
  • There are so many places on the ship that I avoid because I’m afraid of facing the past. But the past is much less scary than the future. I know what’s already happened; I know how bad it was. I don’t know what’s coming, though.
  • Is no life at all better than the constant fear and fight for survival I face every day?
  • Whatever happens, I can’t see a point in time when I will ever be happy. For the rest of my life, I’ll be struggling. I’m always going to be moments away from sinking completely. So why should I live at all? It would be so easy to stop. But it would be so pointless. Every year I’ve fought to survive would be wasted.

The Quiet at the End of the World

  • When you know that there’s no future, the only thing that’s interesting anymore is the past.
  • People may die and civilisations may fall, but little pieces of the past linger.
  • We live in the quiet at the end of the world. The slow winding-down clockwork motions before life stops completely. Time is slipping through our fingers.
  • Our lives are particles on a riverbed being lost by the waters of time. Here and then gone in a moment. Nothing, in the grand scheme of things.
  • There’s no finish line you need to cross to have lived a worthy life, Lowrie. You don’t need to achieve anything, if you don’t want to.
  • Life is whatever you want it to be. With whoever you want to be with. Life is the people around you, the ones you love. You just need to be happy. That’s all that matters.
  • You don’t remember the perfect things when you think about the people you love. You think of the them things. The little habits or guilty pleasures or secret flaws that only they have. Those are the things that make them unique. Those are the things that make us all human.
  • Maybe that’s what matters. Maybe that’s what being “alive” is. It’s not some trick. There’s no magic chemical that gives something a soul. It’s about being loved and loving in return.
  • Life is the people around you, the ones you love. You just need to be happy. That’s all that matters.
  • I am not human because I have a brain made of cells and water and iron. I am human because I think in the same way that my ancestors thought. I feel like they felt. I live like they lived. However much my world has changed, however different my day-to-day life might be, that much is true.

To celebrate Green Rising, you can take a quiz to find out which plant you would grow – on my Instagram story highlights or on uquiz.

A nice surprise today – The Quiet at the End of the World has been shortlisted for the National Cyber Awards! It’s a very robot-centric book, so this is a delight.

A guide to writing science-based sci-fi

Published by Lauren James

Lauren James is the twice Carnegie-nominated British author of many Young Adult novels, including The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker, The Loneliest Girl in the Universe and The Quiet at the End of the World. She is also a Creative Writing lecturer, freelance editor, screenwriter, and the founder of the Climate Fiction Writers League. Her upcoming release is Green Rising, a climate change thriller. Her books have sold over a hundred thousand copies worldwide, been translated into five languages and shortlisted for the YA Book Prize and STEAM Children’s Book Award. Her other novels include The Next Together series, the dyslexia-friendly novella series The Watchmaker and the Duke and serialised online novel An Unauthorised Fan Treatise. She was born in 1992, and has a Masters degree from the University of Nottingham, UK, where she studied Chemistry and Physics. Lauren is a passionate advocate of STEM further education, and many of her books feature female scientists in prominent roles. She sold the rights to her first novel when she was 21, whilst she was still at university. Her writing has been described as ‘gripping romantic sci-fi’ by the Wall Street Journal and ‘a strange, witty, compulsively unpredictable read which blows most of its new YA-suspense brethren out of the water’ by Entertainment Weekly. The Last Beginning was named one of the best LGBT-inclusive works for young adults by the Independent. Lauren lives in the West Midlands and is an Arts Council grant recipient. She has written articles for numerous publications, including the Guardian, Buzzfeed, Den of Geek, The Toast, and the Children’s Writers and Artist’s Yearbook 2021. She teaches creative writing for Coventry University, WriteMentor, and Writing West Midlands, providing creative writing courses to children through the Spark Young Writers programme.

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