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Quotes

Quote #1

After midnight she stands there in her black rig rooted to the spot. Back of her is a little alleyway that blazes like an inferno. Passing her now with a light heart she reminds me somehow of a goose tied to a stake, a goose with a diseased liver […] Must be strange taking that wooden stump to be with you.

Henry assesses a prostitute with a wooden stump for a leg. His image of her is a little freakish—like her goose is, er, cooked. It's pretty clear that Henry seems women as a sum of their parts, not any greater whole. And to him, those parts are all inevitably tied to sex.

Quote #2

I am fucking you, Tania, so that you'll stay fucked. And if you are afraid of being fucked publicly I will fuck you privately […] I will bite your clitoris and spit out two francs. (1.19)

First, ouch. Second, is this Henry's idea of a romantic evening together? It's no wonder Tania is with crusty old Sylvester. Remember, this is the woman to whom he dedicates the whole book, the woman whom he possibly even loves. If he can't think of her for anything but sex, we're pretty sure the same will go for all other women, too.

Quote #3

Llona, now she had a cunt. I know because she sent us some from down below. (1.21)

Ugh. Here's a good ol' nasty example of how our charming narrator has a tendency to be a bit reductive. You'll notice he doesn't exactly wax poetic about a woman's beautiful eyes or luscious lips.

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