I’m thinking I should call this “the exemplary paragraph” as it’s usually more than one sentence that catches my eye… but of course the paragraph is made up of sentences. In this case from three books I read recently.
But the first is just a sentence, from Trajectory by Richard Russo, a recent book of his short stories. “Because people cling to folly as if it were their most prized possession, defending it, sometimes with violence, against the possibility of wisdom.”
The second is a paragraph from a book by a Jewish woman who masqueraded as a gentile and married a Nazi to get through the war. She is talking with an acquaintance who is telling her about her life.
” ‘Let me tell you we had some hard times when I was a kid. For twelve years Papa had no steady job. We lived on charity mostly. Then, when our dear Führer came to power, things got much better. Just about all the young people we knew joined the Hitler Youth. When I was fifteen I went to a Nazi Party banquet, and they served rolls with butter.’ Is that the reason? I wondered. Is that why they averted their eyes, made themselves blind? For the butter?” from The Nazi Officer’s Wife by Edith Hahn Beer. Continue reading “The exemplary sentence”