12 Quotes to Inspire Bravery

We go to books for many things: entertainment, wisdom, an emotional experience, an escape.  The books that often leave the deepest impressions on our hearts are those that inspire us to live better.  Those books take our hands in the darkness of real life difficulties and guide us to better versions of ourselves. In this spirit, we thought we’d compile a list of twelve quotes from literature that inspire bravery, especially in those moments when you need them most.


“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.” 
? J.K. RowlingHarry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone



“I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”
? Harper LeeTo Kill a Mockingbird


“Bran thought about it. ‘Can a man still be brave if he’s afraid?’
‘That is the only time a man can be brave,’ his father told him.” 
George R.R. MartinA Game of Thrones


“There are so many ways to be brave in this world. Sometimes bravery involves laying down your life for something bigger than yourself, or for someone else. Sometimes it involves giving up everything you have ever known, or everyone you have ever loved, for the sake of something greater.

But sometimes it doesn’t.

Sometimes it is nothing more than gritting your teeth through pain, and the work of every day, the slow walk toward a better life. 

That is the sort of bravery I must have now.” 
Veronica RothAllegiant



“At times the world may seem an unfriendly and sinister place, but believe that there is much more good in it than bad. All you have to do is look hard enough. and what might seem to be a series of unfortunate events may in fact be the first steps of a journey.” 
Lemony SnicketA Series of Unfortunate Events


“Scared is what you’re feeling. Brave is what you’re doing.” 
Emma DonoghueRoom


“…Who could refrain,
That had a heart to love, and in that heart
Courage to make love known?” 
? William ShakespeareMacbeth


“You have plenty of courage, I am sure,” answered Oz. “All you need is confidence in yourself. There is no living thing that is not afraid when it faces danger. The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid, and that kind of courage you have in plenty.” 
L. Frank BaumThe Wonderful Wizard of Oz



“Anybody can learn to think, or believe, or know, but not a single human being can be taught to feel… the moment you feel, you’re nobody ? but-yourself ? in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else ? means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight, and never stop fighting.” 
E.E. Cummings, E. E. Cummings: A Miscellany Revised


“Go for broke. Always try and do too much. Dispense with safety nets. Take a deep breath before you begin talking. Aim for the stars. Keep grinning. Be bloody-minded. Argue with the world. And never forget that writing is as close as we get to keeping a hold on the thousand and one things–childhood, certainties, cities, doubts, dreams, instants, phrases, parents, loves–that go on slipping , like sand, through our fingers.” 
Salman Rushdie, Imaginary Homelands


“You can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will.” 
Stephen KingOn Writing


“I remembered that the real world was wide, and that a varied field of hopes and fears, of sensations and excitments, awaited those who had the courage to go forth into it’s expanse, to seek real knowledge of life amidst it’s perils.” 
Charlotte BrontëJane Eyre


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