The Handmaid’s Tale

“There remains a mirror, on the hall wall.  If I turn my head so that the white wings framing my face direct my vision towards it, I can see as I go down the stairs, round, convex, a pier glass, like the eye of a fish, and myself in it like a distorted shadow, a parody of something, some fairy-tale figure in a red cloak, descending towards a moment of carelessness that is the same as danger. A Sister, dipped in blood.”

from The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood pg. 11

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The Time Traveler’s Wife

“The compelling thing about art – or making anything, I suppose – is the moment when the vaporous, insubstantial idea becomes a solid there, a substance in the world of substances. Circe, Nimbue, Artemis, Athena, all the sorceresses: they must have known the feeling as they transformed mere men into fabulous creatures, stole the secrets of the magicians, disposed armies: ah, look, there it is, a new thing. Call it a swine, a war, a laurel tree. Call it art. The magic I can make is small magic now, deferred magic. Every day I work, but nothing ever materializes. I feel like Penelope, weaving and unweaving.”

from The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger pg. 284