Ten things we've learnt about love from ten Picador books

From hilarious Bridget Jones quotes to the wise words of Cormac McCarthy, we have compiled a list of ten things that ten different Picador books have taught us about that little word.

31/01/2013
4 minutes to read
Hardback book open with two pages bent to look like a heart in the middle


1. 'Once I've fallen in love I find it almost impossible to get out; I've learnt that about myself. It doesn't make for an easy life.'

From Ten Things I've Learnt About Love by Sarah Butler

2. I made Victor promise to love me forever. In retrospect, I probably should have asked for something more substantial, like 'Promise me you'll always clean up the cat vomit in the hall.''

From Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson

3. 'Scared money can't win and a worried man can't love.'

From All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy

All the Pretty Horses

by Cormac McCarthy

Book cover for All the Pretty Horses

A uniquely brilliant book . . . told in language as subtly beautiful as its desert setting. One of the most important pieces of American writing of our time' Stephen Amidon, Sunday Times

John Grady Cole is the last bewildered survivor of long generations of Texas ranchers. Finding himself cut off from the only life he has ever wanted, he sets out for Mexico with his friend Lacey Rawlins. Befriending a third boy on the way, they find a country beyond their imagining: barren and beautiful, rugged yet cruelly civilized; a place where dreams are paid for in blood.

All the Pretty Horses is an acknowledged masterpiece from Pulitzer Prize winning author Cormac McCarthy, and a grand love story: a novel about childhood passing, along with innocence and a vanished American age. Steeped in the wisdom that comes only from loss, it is a magnificent parable of responsibility, revenge and survival.

4. 'If there's one thing you can be sure about in this life, it's that you won't always be kissing the right person.'

From Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussmann

5. Sometimes your whole family falls in love with the one you love. ‘Darling Cecil, not everyone at “Two Acres” is in love with you, you know,' said George, and smiled with private satisfaction and a hint of mistrust. He did wonder if Cecil hadn't been almost too much of a success.'

From The Stranger's Child by Alan Hollinghurst

6. Love of an idea can take you on a journey more thrilling, dangerous and emotional than you could imagine.

From The Savage Detectives by Roberto Bolano

The Savage Detectives

by Roberto Bolaño

Book cover for The Savage Detectives

With an afterword by Natasha Wimmer.

Winner of the Herralde Prize and the Rómulo Gallegos Prize. Natasha Wimmer’s translation of The Savage Detectives was chosen as one of the ten best books of 2007 by the Washington Post and the New York Times.

New Year’s Eve 1975, Mexico City. Two hunted men leave town in a hurry, on the desert-bound trail of a vanished poet.

Spanning two decades and crossing continents, theirs is a remarkable quest through a darkening universe – our own. It is a journey told and shared by a generation of lovers, rebels and readers, whose testimonies are woven together into one of the most dazzling Latin American novels of the twentieth century.

7. A husband's love for his wife isn't always what it seems. Or is it?

From How To Be a Good Wife by Emma Chapman

8. 'It were like for the first time I had an actual real past, with real people who'd lived real lives.'

From Ours Are the Streetsby Sunjeev Sahota

9. Love can be purely practical: 'I will ... Form functional relationship with responsible adult.' It can be v. wonderful: 'Had dream date at an intimate little Genoan restaurant near Daniel's flat'. It can also be v. v. desperate: 'What about me? Me? Why doesn't anyone love me?'.

From Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding

10. 'When you love you see a future according to your dreams.'

From All That Is by James Salter

Now tell us your suggestions!