But now and again there appears a novel which opens up a new world not by revealing what is strange, but by revealing what is familiar… Here is a whole world of stuff which you supposed to be of its nature incommunicable, and somebody has managed to communicate it. The effect is to break down, at any rate momentarily, the solitude in which the human being lives… you feel the peculiar relief that comes not so much from understanding as from being understood. ‘He knows all about me,’ you feel; ‘he wrote this specially for me’… For the moment you have got away from the lies and simplifications, the stylized, marionette-like quality of ordinary fiction, even quite good fiction, and are dealing with the recognizable experiences of human beings.— George Orwell
I really butchered the quote, in the sense of hacking it apart. It’s actually about Ulysses and Tropic of Cancer, but I took out everything specific to those books and tried to make like it was about literature in general.