SparkNotes Blog

18 Literary Quotes That Will Break Your Heart, But Only if You’ve Read the Book

Do you like sad things? Sure you do. Your favorite book is The Book Thief, and sometimes you watch YouTube compilation videos titled things like “Saddest TV Deaths” ostensibly to see if your favorite character’s death made the cut, but also because you just want to see what the others are. Of course you like sad things.

But what about sad things—sad quotes, for instance—that are only sad with the right context? There’s a terrible part of me that delights in all things heartbreaking, particularly things that don’t look heartbreaking on the surface. I love the idea that certain words in a certain order make zero sense to some people, but to others they are DISTRESSING and RUINOUS, like the following…