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Quotes | The Book of Lies - Twins Trilogy by Agota Kristof

I was going through some old blog entries from the times when I was blogging in my native language, and came across a collection of quotes from one of my favorite books The Notebook by Agota Kristof. It's actually a trilogy but for some reason the Russian translation which I was reading goes by the name of the first book from The Book of Lies - Twins Trilogy.

I read this book in the summer of 2012. The Twins Trilogy was hands down one of the weirdest books I've ever read. The plot kept on twisting and turning and by the end I wasn't sure what to believe. It's probably high time to re-read this book and see if I now have a different perception of it.

It is a story of two twin boys during the Second World War. Or at least that's what's on the surface. I dare you to read this book and discover its mysteries for yourself!

Here are some of the quotes from the book that I would like to share with you today. I couldn't find these particular quotes in English so all this is my own attempt at translating them.
At dinner time Grandmother says:
"You understood. You have to work for shelter and food."
We say:
"It's not about that. Working is hard but what's even harder is to do nothing and watch someone else work. Especially if it's an elderly person."
Grandmother smirks:
"Sons of a bitch! So you felt sorry for me?"
"No, Grandmother. We just felt ashamed."

Many parts in this book were weird and sometimes harsh, but the reasoning behind the actions of the characters was what really struck me.
Repeating the words over and over again makes them lose their meaning, and the pain that they carry inside calms down.
The story mostly follows two twin boys but it hardly felt like reading about children.
"Why didn't you help me right away?"
"We wanted to see how you'll manage yourself."
"What could I do against three big guys?"
"Throw the bucket at their head, scratch their face, kick them in the balls, yell, scream. Or run away and come back later."
There were so many great moments in that story that I'd like to talk about, but at the same time, I don't want to spoil anything.
"We don't like receiving gifts."
"Why is that?"
"We don't like saying thank you."
It's just that kind of a novel that I'd want everyone to discover for themselves.
"And how am I supposed to live from now on?"
"Just like you did before. Get up in the morning, go to bed in the evening and do everything you need to do in your life."
"That's gonna be long."
"Probably your entire life."
 The last quote is my favorite.
"I'm sure, Lucas, that any human being is born to write a book and not for any other reason. No matter if it's brilliant or mediocre, but one who doesn't write his book is a lost case. He walked through the world without leaving a footprint."
This book was one of a kind for me. I've never read anything like it before or after. Have you read it? Or maybe some other novels with weird plot twists and unusual characters? What would you recommend?


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