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Kindness in Literature

There’s been a lot of negativity in online communities as of late. And while it’s important to keep up with politics (to a point); and be a social activist, standing up against the lions of injustice…it’s also so very, very much needed to be kind and focus on positive things.

Here, for all our sakes, is a small collection of kindness found in books. The motives could be dissected (no human motive is 100% pure), but I’m not going to do that.

“It’s not enough to be friendly. You have to be a friend.”
― R.J. PalacioWonder

Oh, Wonder. You’re such a wonderful book. This whole middle-grade novel is full of kindness moments and quotes.

The premise: A kid who has looked different all of his life ventures out into the world (the world being grade school), makes friendships, moves people to be kind, and all-in-all inspires others as he comes out of his shell.

While I don’t condone violence, my favorite scene involves Auggie’s best estranged friend, Jack Will, standing up for Auggie. Violence isn’t the answer (he punches another kid for making fun of Auggie), yet his heart was right. That’s what I loved. His heart.

“His love for Frodo rose above all other thoughts, and forgetting his peril he cried aloud: ‘I’m coming Mr. Frodo!”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

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Samwise Gamgee from The Lord of the Rings trilogy is a great example of love and kindness in literature. Not only does Sam stay with Frodo no matter what, he even offers to carry Frodo’s burden. And when Frodo won’t let him do that, Sam carries Frodo. Sam is good and is the second being to willingly (if not un-reluctantly) give up the Ring of Power.

“But I feel as if I did know Rue, and she’ll always be with me. Everything beautiful brings her to mind. I see her in the yellow flowers that grow in the Meadow by my house. I see her in the Mockingjays that sing in the trees. But most of all, I see her in my sister, Prim.”
― Suzanne CollinsCatching Fire

Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games not only took her sister’s place in the dreaded arena, she befriended a girl from another district who could seemingly be of little benefit, taking the girl under her wing and ultimately avenging and mourning her as if she had been her own sister.

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These are just a few of my favorite kind moments in literature. What are YOUR favorites?

Keep your nose in a book,
Beth

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