the-girl-who-circumnavigated-fairyland-in-a-ship-of-her-own-making

There must be blood, the girl thought. There must always be blood. (…) It will be all hard and bloody, but there will be wonders, too, or else why bring me here at all? And it’s the wonders I’m after, even if I have to bleed for them.
—  Catherynne M. Valente, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
Amandla Stenberg as September

It will all be hard and bloody, but there will be wonders, too, or else why bring me here at all? And it’s the wonders I'm after, even if I have to bleed for them.

One ought not to judge her: all children are Heartless. They have not grown a heart yet, which is why they can climb high trees and say shocking things and leap so very high grown-up hearts flutter in terror. Hearts weigh quite a lot. That is why it takes so long to grow one. But, as in their reading and arithmetic and drawing, different children proceed at different speeds. (It is well known that reading quickens the growth of a heart like nothing else.) Some small ones are terrible and fey, Utterly Heartless. Some are dear and sweet and Hardly Heartless At All.
—  Catherynne M. Valente, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
Stories have a way of changing faces. They are unruly things, undisciplined, given to delinquency and the throwing of erasers. This is why we must close them up into thick, solid books, so they cannot get out and cause trouble.
—  Catherynne M. Valente, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
When you speak of tea or coffee or wine or any of our liquid spells, the drink must be matched perfectly with the drinker to get the best effect. If the match is a good one, the coffee will get to know you a little while you drink it, to know you and love you and cheer for your victories, lend you bravery and daring. The tea will want you to do well, will stand guard before your fear and sorrow. Afternoon tea is really a kind of séance. And at the end of it all, the grounds- or leaves!- left in the bottom of your little cup are not really prophecies but your teatime trying to talk to you, to tell you something secret and dear, just between the two of you.
—  Catherynne M. Valente, The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There
She liked anything orange: leaves; some moons; marigolds; chrysanthemums; cheese; pumpkin, both in pie and out; orange juice; marmalade. Orange is bright and demanding. You can’t ignore orange things. She once saw an orange parrot in the pet store and had never wanted anything so much in her life. She would have named it Halloween and fed it butterscotch. Her mother said butterscotch would make a bird sick and besides, the dog would certainly eat it up. September never spoke to the dog again - on principle
—  The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
Lye poured a bucketful of golden water over September’s head. “When you are born,” the golem said softly, “your courage is new and clean. You are brave enough for anything: crawling off of staircases, saying your first words without fearing that someone will think you are foolish, putting strange things in your mouth. But as you get older, your courage attracts gunk, and crusty things, and dirt, and fear, and knowing how bad things can get and what pain feels like. By the time you’re half-grown, your courage barely moves at all, it’s so grunged up with living. So every once in awhile, you have to scrub it up and get the works going, or else you’ll never be brave again. Unfortunately, there are not so many facilities in your world who provide the kind of services we do. So most people go around with grimy machinery, when all it would take is a bit of spit and polish to make them paladins once more, bold knights and true.”
—  Catherynne M. Valente; The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
The Marquess was very close, as close as kissing. She smelled like beautiful, dying flowers. … September felt much as she had when Goodbye had tried to convince her to be a witch. But there was no glamour. The Marquess was not a witch. It was only that she was so terribly strong and so terribly close.
—  Pg. 97 of The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente
I wouldn’t even consider it if I were you. But then if I were you, I would not be me, and if I were not me, I would not be able to advise you, and if I were unable to advise you, you’d do as you like, so you might as well do as you like and have done with it.
—  Catherynne M. Valente, “The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland In A Ship Of Her Own Making”

Books & Cupcakes July Book Photo Challenge

Day One: Favorite Title

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

“September read often, and liked it best when words did not pretend to be simple, but put on their full armor and rode out with colors flying.”