Mega-post alert! My top 10 with quotes, bring your lunch. What can I say, labour of love.
Glitz- Elmore Leonard
The Puerto Rican cop spoke again.
Vincent said to Teddy,"He says, you do time in Oso Blanco. it would make Raiford seem like Disneyworld".
"Bullshit", Teddy said. Guy was putting him on and he knew it.
"That's what he said," Vincent said to him.
"You bring me all the way out here to give me this shit?"
"They want you on a plane tomorrow."
"Come on, 'ey?"
"They know all about you and they don't like you." Vincent walked up to him now to stand face to face, less than a couple of feet separating them. "I don't like you either. I can't stand to look at you. They say they don't want to see you again after 4:30 tomorrow."
Teddy felt restless, wanting to hit him, give him a shove. He said, "Bullshit, I can stay here long as I want."
"They say if you're still here they'll find some smack in your bag and you'll stay ten to twenty. That long enough?"
Red Harvest- Dashiell Hammett
I first heard Personville called Poisonville by a red-haired mucker named Dewey Hickey in the Big Ship in Butte. He also called his shirt a shoit. I didn't think anything of what he had done to the city's name. Later I heard men who could manage their r's give it the same pronunciation. I still didn't see anything in it but the meaningless sort of humour that used to make richardsnary the thieves' word for dictionary. A few years later I went to Personville and learned better.
The Stars, My Destination- Alfred Bester
“Friends, Romans, Countrymen,” Fourmyle began earnestly. “Lend me your ears, Shakespeare. 1564-1616. Damn!”
Four white doves shook themselves out of Fourmyle's sleeves and fluttered away. He regarded them with astonishment, then continued. “Friends, greetings, salutations, bonjour, bon ton, bon vivant, bon voyage, bon—What the hell? ”Fourmyle's pockets caught fire and rocketed forth Roman Candles. He tried to put himself out. Streamers and confeti burst from him. “Friends... Shut up l'Il get this speech straight. Quiet! Friends—!” Fourmyle looked down at himself in dismay. His clothes were melting away, revealing lurid scarlet underwear. “Kleinmanl” he bellowed furiously. “Kleinmanl What‟s happened to your godamned hypno-training?”
A hairy head thrust out of a tent. “You stoodied for dis sbeech last night, Fourmyle?”
“Damn right. For two hours I stoodied. Never took my head out of the hypno-oven. Kleinman on Prestidigitation.”
“No,no,no!” the hairy man bawled. “How many times must I tell you? Prestidigitation is not sbeechmaking. Is magic. Dumbkopfl You haff the wrong hypnosis taken!”
Ringworld- Larry Niven
The rosette of worlds had been expanding for some time. Now the puppeteer world glowed beneath their feet, rising, rising to engulf them. Scattered stars in the black seas had expanded, to become scores of small islands. The continents burned like sun fire.
Long ago, Louis Wu had stood at the void edge of Mount Lookitthat. The Long Fall River, on that world, ends in the tallest waterfall in known space. Louis' eyes had followed it down as far as they could penetrate the void mist. The featureless white of the void itself had grasped at his mind, and Louis Wu, half hypnotised, had sworn to live forever. How else could he see all there was to see?
Now he reaffirmed that decision. And the puppeteer world rose about him.
-Shortly after Louis Wu's 200th Birthday.
Brighton Rock- Graham Greene
“Fun... human nature... does no one any harm... Regular as clockwork the old excuses came back into the alert, sad and dissatisfied brain--nothing ever matched the deep excitement of the regular desire. Men always failed you when it came to the act. She might just as well have been to the pictures.”
Neuromancer- William Gibson
"I'm going in for a pass, Dixie."
"Be my guest."
Case punched to within four grid points of the cube. its blank face, towering above him now, began to seethe with faint internal shadows, as though a thousand dancers whirled behind a vast sheet of frosted glass.
"Knows we're here," the Flatline observed.
Case punched again, once; they jumped forward by a single grid point.
A stippled grey circle formed on the face of the cube.
"Back off , fast".
The grey area bulged smoothly, became a sphere, and detached itself from the cube.
Case felt the edge of the deck sting his palm as he slapped MAX REVERSE. The matrix blurred backward; they plunged down a twilight shaft of Swiss banks. He looked up. The sphere was darker now, gaining on him. Falling.
"Jack out," the Flatline said.
The dark came down like a hammer.
The Maltese Falcon- Dashiell Hammett
"He said: "I'm going to send you over. The chances are you'll get off with life. That means you'll be out again in twenty years. You're an angel. I'll wait for you." He cleared his throat. "If they hang you I'll always remember you."
The Manchurian Candidate- Richard Condon
Everybody got quiet all of a sudden. Even his mother. They all looked alert as the President came out. He looked magnificent. He was ruddy and tall and he looked so entirely sane that Raymond wanted to put his head on the President's chest and cry because he hadn't seen very many sane people since he had left Ben Marco.
He stood at attention, eyes forward.
The President said, "At ease, soldier." The President leaned forward to pick up Raymond's right hand from where it dangled at his side and as he shook it warmly he said, "You're a brave man, Sergeant. I envy you in the best sense of that word because there is no higher honour your country has to give than this medal you will receive today." Raymond watched his mother edge over. With horror, he saw the jackal-look in her eyes and in Johnny's.
The Dudley Smith Cycle- James Ellroy
Four men went down; Meeks got a topsy-turvy view; the courtyard, Mal Lunceford turning tail. Then, behind him. "Hello lad."
Dudley Smith stepped through the flames, dressed in a fire department greatcoat. Meeks saw his suitcase- ninety-four grand, dope- over by the mattress. "Dud, you came prepared."
'Like the boy scouts, lad. And have you a valediction?"
Suicide: heisting a deal Dudley S. watchdogged. Meeks raised his guns; Smith shot first. Meeks died - thinking the El Serrano Motel looked just like the Alamo.
- Prologue, LA Confidential
Starship Troopers- Robert Heinlein
"The instinct to survive is human nature itself, and every aspect of our personalities derives from it. Anything that conflicts with the survival instinct acts sooner or later to eliminate the individual and thereby fails to show up in future generations. . . . A scientifically verifiable theory of morals must be rooted in the individual's instinct to survive--and nowhere else!--and must correctly describe the hierarchy of survival, note the motivations at each level, and resolve all conflicts.
We have such a theory now; we can solve any moral problem, on any level. Self-interest, love of family, duty to country, responsibility toward the human race . . . .
The basis of all morality is duty, a concept with the same relation to group that self-interest has to individual."