Thursday Quotables: The Hummingbird


Welcome back to Thursday Quotables! This weekly feature is the place to highlight a great quote, line, or passage discovered during your reading each week.  Whether it’s something funny, startling, gut-wrenching, or just really beautifully written, Thursday Quotables is where my favorite lines of the week will be, and you’re invited to join in!

NEW! Thursday Quotables is now using a Linky tool! Be sure to add your link if you have a Thursday Quotables post to share.

The Hummingbird

The Hummingbird by Stephen P. Kiernan
(released September 8, 2015)

This powerful books looks at people wounded by life and wounded by war, as well as providing a portrait of the people who care for them. Here’s part of a harsh but emotional exchange between one war veteran and the wife of another:

Joel held his arms wide. “Oh beautiful for spacious skies. Another believer in the innocence of noncombatants.”

“Excuse me?”

“Oh yeah… You have no complicity in warfare at all. You are sweet and clean and would never hurt a flea.”

“What are you trying to — ”

“But us soldiers and sailors and airmen and Marines, we must be the Other, the stranger, the odd thing that people maybe thank or maybe hate, but either way we are something different and weird and scary and not at all like you good, nice civilized folk.”

I’m getting close to the end of The Hummingbird, and I’m finding the writing and the characters so incredibly moving. I’ll be sharing my thoughts next week when I participate in the blog tour for this book.

What lines made you laugh, cry, or gasp this week? Do tell!

If you’d like to participate in Thursday Quotables, it’s really simple:

  • Write a Thursday Quotables post on your blog. Try to pick something from whatever you’re reading now. And please be sure to include a link back to Bookshelf Fantasies in your post (, if you’d be so kind!
  • Click on the linky button (look for the cute froggie face) below to add your link.
  • After you link up, I’d love it if you’d leave a comment about my quote for this week.
  • Be sure to visit other linked blogs to view their Thursday Quotables, and have fun!

10 thoughts on “Thursday Quotables: The Hummingbird

    • It’s such an interesting book, and this chapter in particular showed some of the common experiences returning soldiers face, whether coming back from Vietnam or Iraq, and trying to figure out how to live in the civilian world again.

    • The book is really lovely. I’ve read a few interesting books about soldiers in the past couple of years, and for some reason I’m always especially moved by the stories of what happens when they come home again and have to readjust.

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