Mario Puzo’s Finest Novel
There are many people who do not like The Dark Arena. They feel it is too dark, the characters too dislikable, and the plot too unpalatable. Such people should stick to reading their Archie Comics and leave real, profound, literature to those who can appreciate its richness from personal experience.
This is one of the realest books I have ever read. There is no window dressing or frills of any sort. This is the plain and simple story of a deeply troubled and disturbed man in a landscape that mirrored his mind. How the ravages of war left scars that made living in the place he once called home, unbearable.
There is no way to idealize the characters of the book. They are an accurate representation of the time and place the novel was set in. Nearly 80 million people died and millions more were left destitute and disfigured just twenty years after the destruction of the First Great War. This book is a another Ode of Remembrance, Lest We Forget.
“Now it is a strange thing, but things that are good to have and days that are good to spend are soon told about, and not much to listen to; while things that are uncomfortable, palpitating, and even gruesome, may make a good tale, and take a deal of telling anyway.”
— J.R.R. Tolkien
“The truth is, the Establishment is on the side of the big battalions, because it created and armed them in the first place.
It never seems to occur to the millions of readers of that garbage that maybe God, if there is one, has something to do with truth, justice, and compassion rather than sheer brute force, and that truth and justice might possibly be on the side of the little platoons.
Not that it matters. The big battalions always win, and the ‘serious’ press always approves, and the grazers always believe it.”
— Cat Shannon
“The ancient Sanskrit legends speak of a destined love, a karmic connection between souls that are fated to meet and collide and enrapture one another.
The legends say that the loved one is instantly recognized because she’s loved in every gesture, every expression of thought, every movement, every sound, and every mood that prays in her eyes.
The legends say that we know her by her wings—the wings that only we can see—and because wanting her kills every other desire of love.”
“Behind everything is the idea that Riverdale is a place that is welcoming to anyone. The goal has always been to be a place of comfort to our readers, especially for our youngest readers.
Nothing terrible or violent happens in Riverdale: You have to keep that out of our town. Kids today go through metal detectors at their schools, there are police officers in the hallways, the drugs, the gangs. By design, Archie lives in a world the way we might like it to be.”
— Victor Gorelick
“I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place; and, as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her.”
“‘I am so blest, Trotwood - my heart is so overcharged -
but there is one thing I must say.’
She laid her gentle hands upon my shoulders, and looked
calmly in my face.
‘Do you know, yet, what it is?’
‘I am afraid to speculate on what it is. Tell me, my dear.’
‘I have loved you all my life!’”
— David & Agnes
“Faith is universal. Our specific methods for understanding it are arbitrary. Some of us pray to Jesus, some of us go to Mecca, some of us study subatomic particles. In the end we are all just searching for truth, that which is greater than ourselves.”
— Vittoria Vetra
“How sad it is! I shall grow old, and horrible, and dreadful. But this picture will remain always young. It will never be older than this particular day of June... If it were only the other way! If it were I who was to be always young, and the picture that was to grow old! For that-for that-I would give everything! Yes, there is nothing in the whole world I would not give! I would give my soul for that!”
— Dorian Gray
“He must master or be mastered; while to show mercy was a weakness. mercy did not exist in the primordial life. It was misunderstood for fear, and such misunderstandings made for death. Kill or be killed, eat or be eaten, was the law; and this mandate, down out of the depths of Time, he obeyed.”
— Jack London
“Like many other unfortunate young people, Harvey had never in all his life received a direct order - never, at least, without long, and sometimes tearful, explanations of the advantages of obedience and the reasons for the request.”
— Rudyard Kipling