Our favorite quotes from “Agents of Dreamland” by Caitlín R. Kiernan

Spooky, weird, Lovecraftian, body horror, spacey, cults… without giving away any spoilers, here are our favorite quotes from Caitlín R. Kiernan’s artfully-constructed “Agents of Dreamland.”

Moses on a motorbike, but isn’t she cool enough to freeze brimstone in Hell? Wouldn’t winding up on her bad side make a death sentence seem charitable?

These thoughts tumble on whirring insect wings in the hexagonal honeycomb of my mind’s single eye, hollowing me out, while the sun chars me the same earth-tone shades as the desert.

I want to open my eyes, the windows to my soul, but Drew reminds me it’s too soon to burn out my retinas. I’m gonna need them just a little longer.

There’s nothing on the screen but static, a blizzard of white electric snow. It crawls across the curved screen like ants. It drifts behind the glass like deadly spores carried on the wind.

“She will fold open like a rose, and the star winds will come pouring down from the sky and down from the mountains to scour the rocks and lift her up to the heavens. As you each shall be lifted.”

Their language works its way into your brain, digging in and lodging in the convolutions of the cerebrum, burrowing into the fine grooves of the cerebellum, threatening to highjack all reason and even the basest animal instincts.

The very last, I hear Madeline whisper. By the time you arrive, little afterthought, the deed will be done. The parade will have come and gone. But don’t be sad. Every revolution needs a rear guard, just in case. Someone will be thankful, I’m sure.

But humans, inherent problem solvers that we are, chafe at problems that cannot be solved, questions that cannot ever, once and for all, satisfactorily be put to rest: the assassination of President Kennedy, the Permian–Triassic extinction event, the Wow! signal, Casper Hauser, the Voynich manuscript, the identity of Jack the Ripper.

It was really hard to select just a few quotes, because the writing in this novella is absolutely fantastic. Lyrical, flowery, bizarre, and with a rough edge.

What’s your favorite Caitlín R. Kiernan line?

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