1. Great heroes need great sorrows and burdens, or half their greatness goes unnoticed. It is all part of the fairy tale.
2. I am fated to journey hand in hand with my strange heroes and to survey the surging immensity of life, to survey it through the laughter that all can see and through the tears unseen and unknown by anyone.
3. There are no heroes…in life, the monsters win.
4. Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a hero to me.
5. Heroes are made by the paths they choose, not the powers they are graced with.
6. But these words people threw around – humans, monsters, heroes, villains – to Victor it was all just a matter of semantics. Someone could call themselves a hero and still walk around killing dozens. Someone else could be labeled a villain for trying to stop them. Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.
7. My own heroes are the dreamers, those men and women who tried to make the world a better place than when they found it, whether in small ways or great ones. Some succeeded, some failed, most had mixed results… but it is the effort that’s heroic, as I see it. Win or lose, I admire those who fight the good fight.
8. Odysseus inclines his head. “True. But fame is a strange thing. Some men gain glory after they die, while others fade. What is admired in one generation is abhorred in another.” He spread his broad hands. “We cannot say who will survive the holocaust of memory. Who knows?” He smiles. “Perhaps one day even I will be famous. Perhaps more famous than you.
9. No, what he didn’t like about heroes was that they were usually suicidally gloomy when sober and homicidally insane when drunk.
10. You know the problem with heroes and saints, Nikolai?” I asked as I closed the book’s cover and headed for the door. “They always end up dead.
11. We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day.
12. Unconsciously we all have a standard by which we measure other men, and if we examine closely we find that this standard is a very simple one, and is this: we admire them, we envy them, for great qualities we ourselves lack. Hero worship consists in just that. Our heroes are men who do things which we recognize, with regret, and sometimes with a secret shame, that we cannot do. We find not much in ourselves to admire, we are always privately wanting to be like somebody else. If everybody was satisfied with himself, there would be no heroes.
13. Name one hero who was happy.
14. Most have been forgotten. Most deserve to be forgotten. The heroes will always be remembered. The best. The best and the worst. And a few who were a bit of both.
15. Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.
16. The noir hero is a knight in blood caked armor. He’s dirty and he does his best to deny the fact that he’s a hero the whole time.
17. She preferred imaginary heroes to real ones, because when tired of them, the former could be shut up in the tin kitchen till called for, and the latter were less manageable.
18. Dead people can be our heroes because they cant disappoint us later; they only improve over time, as we forget more and more about them.
19. Heroes may not be braver than anyone else. They’re just braver 5 minutes longer.
20. But I am the real Strider, fortunately. I am Aragorn son of Arathorn; and if by life or death I can save you, I will.
21. Heroes don’t exist. And if they did, I wouldn’t be one of them.
22. As you get older it is harder to have heroes, but it is sort of necessary.
23. We need not take refuge in supernatural gods to explain our saints and sages and heroes and statesmen, as if to explain our disbelief that mere unaided human beings could be that good or wise.
24. Of course not. No one is chosen. Not ever. Not in the real world. You chose to climb out of your window and ride on a leopard. You chose to get a witch’s Spoon back, and to make friends with a wyvern. You chose to trade your shadow for a child’s life. You chose not to let the Marquess hurt your friend–you chose to smash her cages! You chose to face your own Death, not to balk at a great sea to cross and no ship to cross it in. And twice now you have chosen not to go home when you might have, if only you abandoned your friends. You are not the chosen one, September. Fairyland did not choose you–you chose yourself. You could have had a lovely holiday in Fairyland and never met the Marquess, never worried yourself with local politics, had a romp with a few brownies and gone home with enough memories for a lifetime’s worth of novels. But you didn’t. You chose. You chose it all. Just like you chose your path on the beach: to lose your heart is not a path for the faint and fainting.
25. I like my coffee black, my beer from Germany, wine from Burgundy, the darker, the better. I like my heroes complicated and brooding, James Dean in oiled leather, leaning on a motorcycle. You know the color. (“Ode to Chocolate”)
26. To be heroic is to be courageous enough to die for something; to be inspirational is to be crazy enough to live a little.
27. The real heroes are the librarians and teachers who at no small risk to themselves refuse to lie down and play dead for censors.
28. Who are your favorite heroines in real life? The women of Afghanistan, Iraq, and Iran who risk their lives and their beauty to defy the foulness of theocracy. Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Azar Nafisi as their ideal feminine model.
29. All heroes are shadows of Christ
30. What makes a hero? Courage, strength, morality, withstanding adversity? Are these the traits that truly show and create a hero? Is the light truly the source of darkness or vice versa? Is the soul a source of hope or despair? Who are these so called heroes and where do they come from? Are their origins in obscurity or in plain sight?
31. You were the one who taught me,” he said. “I never looked at you without seeing the sweetness of the way the world goes together, or without sorrow for its spoiling. I became a hero to serve you, and all that is like you.
32. Being a hero means ignoring how silly you feel.
33. I know, better than anyone else, that there are no heroes coming to save us. There are no good Epics. None of them protect us. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
34. People are not born heroes or villains; they’re created by the people around them.
35. Every student, Shadowhunter and mundane alike, knew the name Herondale. It was Jace’s last name. It was the name of heroes.
36. Everybody wanted to be the hero of their own story. Nobody wanted to be comic relief.
37. when you feel like hope is gone, look inside you and be strong and you’ll finally see the truth- that hero lies in you.
38. I am of certain convinced that the greatest heroes are those who do their duty in the daily grind of domestic affairs whilst the world whirls as a maddening dreidel.
39. The Bible just said ‘Thou shalt not kill’, then told hundreds of stories of people killing each other and becoming heroes, like David with Goliath.
40. But no man’s a hero to himself.
41. When you’re truly awesome, you know that it’s actually a burden and wish day after day to be relieved of such a curse. Think of about 95% of the superheroes.
42. You learn eventually that, while there are no villains, there are no heroes either. And until you make the final discovery that there are only human beings, who are therefore all the more fascinating, you are liable to miss something.
43. So long as men worship the Caesars and Napoleons, Caesars and Napoleons will duly rise and make them miserable.
44. To assess the quality of thoughts of people, don’t listen to their words, but watch their actions.
45. You don’t raise heroes, you raise sons. And if you treat them like sons, they’ll turn out to be heroes, even if it’s just in your own eyes.
46. To all those women — strong enough to be heroes; fair enough to be ladies. This song is for you.
47. Quite, quite,’ she thought with a little sigh. ‘It’s always like this in their adventures. To save and be saved. I wish somebody would write a story sometime about the people who warm up the heroes afterward.
48. The proliferation of luminous fungi or iridescent crystals in deep caves where the torchlessly improvident hero needs to see is one of the most obvious intrusions of narrative causality into the physical universe.
49. What I wanted to express very clearly and intensely was that the reason these people had to invent or imagine heroes and gods is pure fear. Fear of life and fear of death.
50. I have a private theory, Sir, that there are no heroes and no monsters in this world. Only children should be allowed to use these words
51. The authentic human being is one of us who instinctively knows what he should not do, and, in addition, he will balk at doing it. He will refuse to do it, even if this brings down dread consequences to him and to those whom he loves. This, to me, is the ultimately heroic trait of ordinary people; they say no to the tyrant and they calmly take the consequences of this resistance. Their deeds may be small, and almost always unnoticed, unmarked by history. Their names are not remembered, nor did these authentic humans expect their names to be remembered. I see their authenticity in an odd way: not in their willingness to perform great heroic deeds but in their quiet refusals. In essence, they cannot be compelled to be what they are not.
52. He was dirty, his hair unkempt, his clothes stained with blood. Heroes in stories somehow managed to rescue maidens while looking like court dandies. Next time he went adventuring he’d remember to bring a comb.
53. Our culture has filled our heads but emptied our hearts, stuffed our wallets but starved our wonder. It has fed our thirst for facts but not for meaning or mystery. It produces “nice” people, not heroes.
54. Men have to have heroes, but no man can ever be as big as the need, and so a legend grows around a grain of truth, like a pearl.
55. He did what heroes do after their work is accomplished; he died.
56. Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show. To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I record that I was born (as I have been informed and believe) on a Friday, at twelve o’clock at night. It was remarked that the clock began to strike, and I began to cry, simultaneously.
57. I’m just a kid, Chiron,” I said miserably. “What good is one lousy hero against something like Kronos?” Chiron managed a smile. ‘”What good is one lousy hero’? Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain said something like that to me once, just before he single-handedly changed the course of your Civil War.
58. Real heroes are men who fall and fail and are flawed, but win out in the end because they’ve stayed true to their ideals and beliefs and commitments.
59. Everybody sins, Francis. The terrible thing is that we love our sins. We love the thing that makes us evil.
60. Heroes are more than just stories, they’re people. And people are complicated; people are strange. Nobody is a hero through and through, there’s always something in them that’ll turn sour… you’ll learn it one day. There are no heroes, only villains who win.