Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite John Buchan Book Quotes


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.

The rules are simple:

  • Each Tuesday, Jana assigns a new topic. Create your own Top Ten list that fits that topic – putting your unique spin on it if you want.
  • Everyone is welcome to join but please link back to The Artsy Reader Girl in your own Top Ten Tuesday post.
  • Add your name to the Linky widget on that day’s post so that everyone can check out other bloggers’ lists.
  • Or if you don’t have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.

This week’s topic is Favourite Book Quotes.  One of my projects this year is reading/re-reading the books of John Buchan (click here to find out more about my Buchan of the Month reading project).  Therefore, my quotations all come from books written by John Buchan.  I chose them because they’re either great lines and/or quintessentially Buchan in style.

‘You think that a wall as solid at the earth separates civilisation from barbarism.  I tell you the division is a thread, a sheet of glass.’ (Lumley to Leithen in The Power-House by John Buchan)

I returned from the City about three o’clock on that May afternoon pretty well disgusted with life.’ (Opening line of The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan)

‘It struck me that Albania was the sort of place that might keep a man from yawning.’ (The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan)

“I got the first hint on an inn on the Achensee in Tyrol.  That set me inquiring, and I collected my other clues in a fur shop in the Galician quarter of Buda, in a Strangers’ Club in Vienna, and in a little bookshop off the Racknizstrasse in Leipsic.” (Scudder to Hannay in The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan)

“By God!’ he whispered, drawing his breath in sharply.  “It is all pure Rider Haggard and Conan Doyle.” (‘The Literary Innkeeper’ in response to Hannay’s story, in The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan)

‘I stared after her as she walked across the lawn, and I remember noticing that she moved with the free grace of an athletic boy.’ (Hannay’s first glimpse of Mary in Mr Standfast by John Buchan)

‘So he passed over, and all the trumpets sounded for him on the other side.’ (Quotation from John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress in Mr Standfast by John Buchan)

‘He had never been lonely in his life before he met her, having at the worst found good company in himself; but now he longed for a companion, and out of all the many millions of the earth’s inhabitants there was only one that he wanted.’ (Jaikie about Alison in The House of the Four Winds by John Buchan)

‘It is to the credit of mankind that it responds to what is best in itself, when that best – which rarely happens – is so pinnacled that none can miss it.’ (Memory-Hold-The-Door by John Buchan)

‘It is a stage which no doubt has its drawbacks.  The wind is not so good, the limbs are not so tireless as in the ascent; the stride is shortened, and since we are descending we must be careful in placing the feet.  But on the upward road the view was blocked by the slopes and there was no far prospect to be had except by looking backwards.  Now the course if mercifully adapted to failing legs, we can rest and reflect since the summit has been passed, and there is a wide country before us, though the horizon is mist and shadow.’ (On middle age, in Memory-Hold-The-Door by John Buchan)

Next week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic: Books That Surprised Me (In A Good Or Bad Way

4 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite John Buchan Book Quotes

  1. I love that you focused on one author with so many wise words. It’s great to have a sort of relationship to an author where you CAN come up with so many beautiful quotes.

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