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God Of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
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God Of Small Things (original 1997; edition 1999)

by Arundhati Roy

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15,250273123 (3.89)549
Member:sbr5d
Title:God Of Small Things
Authors:Arundhati Roy
Info:Random House Value Publishing (1999), Hardcover
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy (1997)

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» See also 549 mentions

English (242)  Spanish (7)  Dutch (5)  German (5)  Italian (4)  French (4)  All (1)  Catalan (1)  Finnish (1)  Hebrew (1)  Swedish (1)  All (1)  All (273)
Showing 1-5 of 242 (next | show all)
After hearing nothing but praise for Arundhati Roy's first novel, The God of Small Things. Two chapters in however, I was flagging and still couldn't get into her novel. Perhaps it was the jumping backwards and forwards in time, and the brief introductions to many different characters. I was constantly puzzled over who characters were, and whether the plot had flash forward in time or backwards.
I really, really wanted to like this book. So I put it aside to come back to at another time. Twice. Then I came across the audiobook in the library and decided to give it one last try.
It took me a little while to adjust to the narrator’s style but, when I got my ear in, it was fine.
Roy's prose is beautiful in places with a light, comic touch in others. However, it is in structure and plot that Roy falters. She dresses the story up in an unnecessarily complex narrative structure, jumping backwards and forwards in time without enough clues. There were a couple of completely irrelevant sections which rambled on and added nothing – like the details about the moth. The secrets behind so many plot elements were overplayed as a tease, and not handled as well as they could have been – and I was a bit fed up waiting for the reveal to be honest. It's also a bit too ethereal in some places, and it was a relief to get back to straight story telling. Also, for all the character detail in there, some felt like they need filling out more.
Perhaps, in order to disguise this, Roy threw in a mishmash of troubling events - domestic violence, an abused child, divorce, the untouchables, incest, to name just a few. But it all lacked any cohesion and appeared jumbled and in parts gratuitous.
At times I was completely captivated by this story, but at others totally confused, and at the end a little let down. ( )
  Jawin | May 13, 2018 |
Reading this was unlike any reading experience I've ever had.

The story isn't told so much as it is poured into a basin, wholly but slowly, so as not to produce any waves or splashes. And I didn't so much "enjoy reading" as I was compelled to keep diving in and around and through it, even though I knew for sure I was not heading for anything remotely resembling a happy ending at the bottom of the bowl.

Glorious writing. Beautifully complex structure. Tragic, Disturbing, Human-Love Story. ( )
  Kim_Sasso | Mar 14, 2018 |
A story of love, loss, family, politics, caste... Sweeping epic, written in the language of dreams. Who should be loved & how much?
  open-leadership | Jan 24, 2018 |
It took me months to get through this book even though the writing is phenomenal because the story is on the dark side. I put it down and read 4 or 5 other books in the meantime, but I never had trouble picking it up again. interestingly, the author has created the darkness of the book by including passages that are full of colour.It is stark contrast, then, when colours are absent from the text. I also love that the book is unapologetic about its setting - it is not American and it doesn't care if the reader is - culture, language, setting, none of it is explained for those unfamiliar with this part of the world which not typical for a book written in English that is not American or Western Europe. Not easy reading, but very rich with language and heavy with tragedy. Worthwhile reading. ( )
  LDVoorberg | Dec 3, 2017 |
Review: The God Of Small Things by Roy Arundhati. 3.5★'s

I thought the book was well-written in a creative prose style. The flow of words and descriptiveness was memorizing. The author captivates the reader to view the story through a child’s eyes. Throughout the book flashbacks of childhood’s events, situations, and thoughts are creatively entwined within the story as the main focus which showed the emotions visibly and touching in the midst’s of the story for an interesting read. The book illustrates the inappropriate way the family had abnormal secrecy, the loss of innocence and the sadness of misfortune.

The story is set in India and follows the lives of fraternal twins, Esthappen (male) and Rahel (female) have returned to their family’s home in Kerala to their aunt Kochamma who is called “Baby”. The twins haven’t seen each other in twenty-three years and now they face memories of a horrible tragedy from their childhood. However, their reuniting as adults, they realize that there was always that special connection between them but not a connection the reader will expect.

There was a tragedy in their childhood that had lasting implications to the entire family. That tragedy is slowly told in descriptive detail as the story is woven back and forth in between flashbacks. The events come together to form a sad but beautiful story. The story deals with subject matters as sexual abuse, loss of innocence, social status and love. Roy Arundhati successfully shows the corruption of India’s Law and the Social System. The book isn’t about mystery or suspense but about psychology within the personality and relationships of social society written in great depth. ( )
  Juan-banjo | Nov 20, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 242 (next | show all)
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.
 

» Add other authors (22 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Roy, Arundhatiprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lundborg, GunillaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Never again will a single story be told as though it's the only one.

John Berger
Dedication
For Mary Roy, who grew me up. Who taught me to say "excuse me" before interrupting her in Public. Who loved me enough to let me go. For LKC, who, like me, survived.
First words
May in Ayemenem is a hot, brooding month.
Maj je v Ajemenemu vroč, morast mesec.
Quotations
"D'you know what happens when you hurt people? When you hurt people, they begin to love you less. That's what careless words do. They make people love you a little less."
"Just ignore her," Ammu said. "She's just trying to attract attention."

Ammu too was wrong. Rahel was trying to not attract the attention that she deserved.
Rahel looked around her and saw that she was in a Play. But she had only a small part.
She was just the landscape. A flower perhaps. Or a tree.
A face in the crowd. A Townspeople.
Heaven opened and the water hammered down, reviving the reluctant old well, greenmossing the pigless pigsty, carpet bombing still, tea-coloured puddles the way memory bombs still, tea-coloured minds.
Rahel drifted into marriage like a passenger drifts towards an unoccupied chair in an airport lounge. With a Sitting Down sense.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060977493, Paperback)

In her first novel, award-winning Indian screenwriter Arundhati Roy conjures a whoosh of wordplay that rises from the pages like a brilliant jazz improvisation. The God of Small Things is nominally the story of young twins Rahel and Estha and the rest of their family, but the book feels like a million stories spinning out indefinitely; it is the product of a genius child-mind that takes everything in and transforms it in an alchemy of poetry. The God of Small Things is at once exotic and familiar to the Western reader, written in an English that's completely new and invigorated by the Asian Indian influences of culture and language.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:37 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

The story of an Indian family during the 1969 Communist disturbances in Kerala province. It is told through the eyes of a boy and his sister who are the children of a rich rubber planter. Politics, family drama, illicit love. A debut in fiction.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 13 descriptions

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