The Hour of the Star
How we cite our quotes:
Her life was supersonic. Yet no one noticed that she had crossed the sound barrier with her existence. For other people, she didn't exist. (4.304)
Something interesting about "supersonic." Know what happens when you cross the sound barrier? A big ol' sonic boom. Yeah: "Bang."
She preferred to say nothing because Glória was now her only remaining contact with the world. A world that consisted of her aunt, Glória, Senhor Raimundo, and Olímpico—and more remotely, the girls with whom she shared a room. (4.311)
Girl really needs to get a Facebook profile. Macabéa's network is limited to three people—and seven if she really pushes it. But the thing is, having so few connections makes each one precious to her. Even when it's just that jerk, Olímpico.
I can see that I've tried to impose my own situation on Maca: I need several hours of solitude every day, otherwise I die. (4.353)
Well, it's one thing if you choose to isolate yourself, and that's what this narrator has done. He likes time to himself—but solitude isn't quite the same thing as isolation, is it? Solitude sounds peaceful and restorative; isolation sounds lonely and, well, full of existential despair.