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The God of Small Things (1997)
by Arundhati Roy
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No current Talk conversations about this book.
Had some cool turns of phrase, that made you think about things in a different way.
You could fall into a trance with the rhythm of the language used in this book.
I never cared about any of the characters
I disliked how the author tried to make you actively dislike the vast majority of the characters, major and minor. I have never read anything that is so negative about people.
I expected there to be a big reveal about what had happened at the end, but it had almost all been given away by the time you got there, so it was an anti-climax. Also, because I had lost all emotional ties by the time I got to it, I was just wanting to be done with the book already.
Not my cup of tea, that's for sure.
Difficult to read but the efforts were worth it❇️!
“The Inspector asked his question. Estha’s mouth said Yes. Childhood tiptoed out. Silence slid in like a bolt. Someone switched off the light and Velutha disappeared.”
I think this might be the best novel I've ever read. It's rich. The prose is absolutely gorgeous, full of metaphors that make the setting and atmosphere come alive. The characters are layered and so, so real in my mind. There's symbolism throughout. It's a complex novel, like a puzzle, but it all comes together into a majestic work of literary art. I am overwhelmed and feel I cannot do justice in this review of just how moving and profound I found this book to be. I cannot recommend it enough!
It's hard to characterize the plot of this tale because in some ways the plot is so secondary to the writing itself. Essentially, it is a tale of a family whose choices lead to some terrible consequences. The book is framed in a mysterious way, so to reveal more is really to spoil the suspense.
But for me, the plot really could have been soap opera-esque if it weren't for Roy's absolutely amazing writing. Every page is just brilliantly vivid with metaphors, descriptions, and poetic (in a good way) prose. And yet it is all perfectly readable - - not hard, not pretentious, not filled with its own self importance. Just gorgeous, lush, and evocative. I could read Roy all day long WITH NO PLOT. I'm not kidding. The God of Small Things won the Booker Prize, and in this case, I think it was completely deserved.
Now, is it magical realism? Um, I vote no.
I wanted to figure out how it could have been tagged magical realism because it just was tagged that by sooooo many people.
Let's see what the New York Times had to say: Although Ms. Roy's musical, densely patterned prose combines with the mythic power of her tale to create the impression of magical realism (her work has already been compared in India to that of Gabriel Garcia Marquez), the most fantastical events in ''God of Small Things'' are not the products of a fevered imagination; they are simply the byproducts of everyday passions.
Personally, I fail to see the comparison myself. There's nothing magical in the book. The prose might evoke Marquez - - though I seriously feel Roy's is completely different.
If I had to be critical on any front it is that the time sequence of events was a little tricky to put together. The book flits between past and present - - and there's not a whole lot to indicate which is which. You get the feel of it after a bit, but it was a tad confusing. I'd love to read it again now that I have a better grip on that part. This is one of the few books I can see myself reading again.
If Ms. Roy is sometimes overzealous in foreshadowing her characters' fate, resorting on occasion to darkly portentous clues, she proves remarkably adept at infusing her story with the inexorable momentum of tragedy. She writes near the beginning of the novel that in India, personal despair ''could never be desperate enough,'' that ''it was never important enough'' because ''worse things had happened'' and ''kept happening.'' Yet as rendered in this remarkable novel, the ''relative smallness'' of her characters' misfortunes remains both heartbreaking and indelible.
Belongs to Publisher Series
Biblioteca Sábado (52)
Gallimard, Folio (3315)
Has as a reference guide/companion
Has as a student's study guide
In 1969 in Kerala, India, Rahel and her twin brother, Estha, struggle to forge a childhood for themselves amid the destruction of their family life, as they discover that the entire world can be transformed in a single moment.
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Melvil Decimal System (DDC)823Literature English & Old English literatures English fiction
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