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Emma Newman (born 1976) is a British author and podcaster, writing science fiction and fantasy.
- All page numbers from the trade paperback first edition published by Roc ISBN 978-0-425-28239-7
- I think “majority” is one of my least favorite words. It’s so often used to justify bad decisions.
- Chapter 3 (p. 18)
- I think that interpreting events as signs from God is a slippery slope.
- Chapter 7 (p. 61)
- One should never break a sacred law when under the influence of psychoactive substances.
- Chapter 8 (p. 66)
- That was the second major lie I told that week. It gets easier, in some ways; now I lie without expending any effort. But I think each one has its own weight. One alone may barely register, like a grain of sand in the palm of one’s hand. But soon enough there’s more than can be held and they start to slip through our grasp if we’re not careful.
I’m always careful.
- Chapter 9 (pp. 72-73)
- Guilt sometimes comes from stupid places.
- Chapter 10 (p. 86)
- There’s no sound except the wildlife staking out territories and calling for a mate. The sounds are different here than on Earth, but the purpose seems the same. “This is my patch!” they scream. “I want sex! Come and shag me! I’ll give you strong babies.” It’s the same stuff humans say most of the time. We just dress those needs up in fancier linguistic clothes.
- Chapter 11 (pp. 87-88)
- Once you let someone into the building it’s harder to keep them out of all the rooms.
- Chapter 11 (p. 92)
- “Do you agree with her?”
His face crumples with concentration. “I don’t know. She says me arriving when I did is a sign. But I decided to come here because of the storm. Does that mean God killed everyone I knew to make me do that?”
- Chapter 18 (p. 137)
- It’s no easier to climb down than it is to go up. It just torments a different set of muscles.
- Chapter 23 (p. 172)
- These are intelligent, rational people and they just absorb all this shit without even thinking about it. Are they so desperate to hold on to something that they’ll ignore the facts? How long can they do that?
- Chapter 23 (p. 173)
- There may be only a thousand or so people here, but it’s easy enough to make the pressure of conformity irresistible. Hell, sometimes we only need one other person to make us fall into line.
- Chapter 23 (p. 174)
- He’s trying to get me to confess some fictional problem to him and I won’t fall for it.
- Chapter 25 (p. 192)
- I’m not going to let that stupid, crazy woman convince everyone that doing this to me is God’s work! She’s just bored and if they knew—
- Chapter 32 (p. 263)
- He doesn’t answer. I can’t stand these little silences from him. They’re too loud.
- Chapter 33 (p. 270)
- As a scientist, I know this is madness. But I also know this is an act of faith.
- Chapter 37 (p. 305)
After Atlas (2016)
- All page numbers from the trade paperback first edition published by Roc ISBN 978-0-425-28240-3
- Nominated for the 2017 Arthur C. Clarke Award
- It’s the first rule of any change to a licensing agreement: it’s not for the benefit of the end user, no matter what they say.
- Chapter 1 (p. 3)
- Journos are twisted sods.
- Chapter 1 (p. 8)
- That’s the trouble with these violent mersives: once the limbic system gets involved my higher cognitive functions are screwed.
- Chapter 2 (p. 13)
- Show me a person who doesn’t have ongoing problems and I’ll show you an AI.
- Chapter 2 (p. 17)
- I’ve grown out of seeking emotional self-destruction. But even now the doubts are slithering in, making me question whether the hellish foundation my life is built on genuinely equates to coping.
- Chapter 3 (p. 27)
- I’m not sure what the masses enjoy more: being swept into a fervor about the latest big story or the backlash against it. It all ends the same way: by the time whatever is being hyped actually happens, most people have used up all the fucks they could possibly give about it.
- Chapter 3 (p. 28)
- That’s the trouble with all these bloody lawyers. They build in the loopholes when they’re on the right gov-corp committees so they can exploit them later.
- Chapter 4 (p. 47)
- Maybe one day I’ll be able to live somewhere with a garden. I’ll be old but skilled enough to still have some consultancy work to pay for the space to grow real food. Hands in the dirt again. Doing something real. No people around. Yeah, that’s the dream. Strange how the things we rail against and hate in our youth can be the things we crave as we get older.
- Chapter 4 (p. 48)
- Nobody does emotional distancing from reprehensible behavior better than the British, after all.
- Chapter 4 (p. 49)
- The car takes us along a long, winding drive, the kind reserved for the sort of place owned by people who want you to spend the last minutes of your journey appreciating just how rich they are.
- Chapter 5 (p. 53)
- I hate dealing with these people.
No, I hate dealing with people, but the rich ones are the worst.
- Chapter 7 (p. 84)
- Everybody is on a leash. Some are more obvious than others.
- Chapter 7 (p. 86)
- Her voice cracks and I fight the tug of memories trying to pull me back to that place where people thought he was the center of the universe. I feel a flash of hatred toward her for being so broken by the loss of him, for needing him so much when he was just a man who scooped up the human detritus from the edges of society and fooled them into thinking they were part of something special.
- Chapter 9 (p. 108)
- She speaks with the authority of the ignorant.
- Chapter 18 (p. 218)
- I often expect the worst. This is one of the rare times when I’m hoping for it.
- Chapter 18 (p. 219)
- I know enough to never take journalists at their word.
- Chapter 19 (p. 231)
- All too easy to find the needle when you know exactly where to look in the haystack.
- Chapter 20 (p. 239)
- She looks at me like I’m a car engine that’s been making a strange noise.
- Chapter 21 (p. 252)
- I’m still not even sure I believe that now. Sounds like the sort of bullshit my psych supervisor would say.
- Chapter 21 (p. 253)
- No. I won’t think about that. I’m not the man the press wants me to be. I am not the victim here.
- Chapter 21 (p. 253)
- The priest didn’t have one of the magic gems stitched into his head though, because he thought that talking to everyone else meant that you never listened to yourself anymore.
- Chapter 21 (p. 255)
- The data is always there. It’s just a matter of knowing where to look.
- Chapter 21 (p. 260)
- If there’s anything I’ve learned in the years in this job, it’s that whatever you need is in the data. You just have to know which paths through it to follow and how to eliminate the extraneous without losing patterns.
- Chapter 21 (p. 264)
- I made a mistake when I was young and didn’t know how the world worked and I have paid for it. Many, many times over.
- Chapter 26 (p. 329)
- Don’t believe anything on the news feeds. It’s all just a circus for the masses.
- Chapter 26 (p. 330)
- “Do you still shout at people when they talk about their faith?”
I shake my head. “I grew out of that. Now I mostly let them damn themselves with their own ignorance.”
- Chapter 27 (p. 333)