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    Lois McMaster Bujold Quotes

    Quotes by Lois McMaster Bujold

    • I am an atheist, myself. A simple faith, but a great comfort to me, in these last days.
    • Guard your honor. Let your reputation fall where it will. And outlive the bastards.
      "A Civil Campaign", 1999
    • Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself.
      "A Civil Campaign", 1999
    • Any community's arm of force - military, police, security - needs people in it who can do necessary evil, and yet not be made evil by it. To do only the necessary and no more. To constantly question the assumptions, to stop the slide into atrocity.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • But pain... seems to me an insufficient reason not to embrace life. Being dead is quite painless. Pain, like time, is going to come on regardless. Question is, what glorious moments can you win from life in addition to the pain?
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • Children might or might not be a blessing, but to create them and then fail them was surely damnation.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • Experience suggests it doesn't matter so much how you got here, as what you do after you arrive.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • Good soldiers never pass up a chance to eat or sleep. They never know how much they'll be called on to do before the next chance.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • My home is not a place, it is people.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • Our children change us... whether they live or not.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • Suicidal glory is the luxury of the irresponsible. We're not giving up. We're waiting for a better opportunity to win.
      "Barrayar", 1991
    • If you want to catch something, running after it isn't always the best way.
      "Borders of Infinity", 1989
    • The will to be stupid is a very powerful force, but there are always alternatives.
      "Brothers in Arms"
    • His mother had often said, When you choose an action, you choose the consequences of that action. She had emphasized the corollary of this axiom even more vehemently: when you desired a consequence you had damned well better take the action that would create it.
      "Memory", 1996
    • How could you be a Great Man if history brought you no Great Events, or brought you to them at the wrong time, too young, too old?
      "Memory", 1996
    • I am who I choose to be. I always have been what I chose, though not always what I pleased.
      "Memory", 1996
    • If you can't do what you want, do what you can.
      "Memory", 1996
    • It was never what I wanted to buy that held my heart's hope. It was what I wanted to be.
      "Memory", 1996
    • Some prices are just too high, no matter how much you may want the prize. The one thing you can't trade for your heart's desire is your heart.
      "Memory", 1996
    • You try to give away what you want yourself.
      "Memory", 1996
    • I don't confuse greatness with perfection. To be great anyhow is the higher achievement.
      "Mirror Dance", 1994
    • It's important that someone celebrate our existence... People are the only mirror we have to see ourselves in. The domain of all meaning. All virtue, all evil, are contained only in people. There is none in the universe at large. Solitary confinement is a punishment in every human culture.
      "Mirror Dance", 1994
    • An honor is not diminished for being shared.
      "Shards of Honor", 1986
    • Exile, for no other motive than ease, would be the last defeat, with no seed of future victory in it.
      "Shards of Honor", 1986
    • A weapon is a device for making your enemy change his mind.
      "The Vor Game", 1990
    • War is not its own end, except in some catastrophic slide into absolute damnation. It's peace that's wanted. Some better peace than the one you started with.
      "The Vor Game", 1990
      War
    • If you're trying to take a roomful of people by surprise, it's a lot easier to hit your targets if you don't yell going through the door.
      "The Warrior's Apprentice", 1986
    • A hundred objective measurements didn't sum the worth of a garden; only the delight of its users did that. Only the use made it mean something.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • A tactical retreat is not a bad response to a surprise assault, you know. First you survive. Then you choose your own ground. Then you counterattack.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • Adulthood isn't an award they'll give you for being a good child. You can waste... years, trying to get someone to give that respect to you, as though it were a sort of promotion or raise in pay. If only you do enough, if only you are good enough. No. You have to just... take it. Give it to yourself, I suppose. Say, I'm sorry you feel like that and walk away. But that's hard.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • Adversity does teach who your real friends are.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • Honesty is the only way with anyone, when you'll be so close as to be living inside each other's skins.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • If power was an illusion, wasn't weakness necessarily one also?
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • Never... ever suggest they don't have to pay you. What they pay for, they'll value. What they get for free, they'll take for granted, and then demand as a right. Hold them up for all the market will bear.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • When you give each other everything, it becomes an even trade. Each wins all.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • You couldn't be that good and not know it, somewhere in your secret heart, however much you'd been abused into affecting public humility.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • You don't pay back your parents. You can't. The debt you owe them gets collected by your children, who hand it down in turn. It's a sort of entailment. Or if you don't have children of the body, it's left as a debt to your common humanity. Or to your God, if you possess or are possessed by one.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • You have to be careful who you let define your good.
      A Civil Campaign, 1999
    • If the truth doesn't save us, what does that say about us?
      Diplomatic Immunity, 2002
    • If you make it plain you like people, it's hard for them to resist liking you back.
      Diplomatic Immunity, 2002
    • The dead cannot cry out for justice; it is a duty of the living to do so for them.
      Diplomatic Immunity, 2002
    • A good friend of my son's is a son to me.
      Ethan of Athos, 1986
    • I take it as a man's duty to restrain himself.
      Ethan of Athos, 1986
    • Some men just aren't cut out for paternity. Better they should realize it before and not after they become responsible for a son.
      Ethan of Athos, 1986
    • There are always survivors at a massacre. Among the victors, if nowhere else.
      Ethan of Athos, 1986
    • What you are is a question only you can answer.
      The Warrior's Apprentice, 1986
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