The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Finished reading on May 2nd, 2015
Having not read any reviews or blurbs about the book before starting it and just knowing how it’s considered a great book, I went into it rather blindly, which was probably for the best.
The story goes around an extended family and their lives and troubles, of which there are so many… Among the characters are twins Esthappen and Rahel, their mother Ammu, grandmother Mammachi, great aunt Baby Kochamma and uncle Chacko, his ex-wife Margaret and their daughter Sophie and finally a factory worker Velutha.
The story is told in several flashbacks, so already in the beginning of the book you find out about some events that are only told about in more detail in the end. I found it quite interesting, although confusing in the beginning as well. Since the topic of death is represented in the book I think it’s a fascinating way of basically playing with the reader -if someone dies in a book in the beginning and we don’t know much about their situation at all, it doesn’t elicit much of an emotional response, while when you get to know them after that and see their lives, it makes it ever so much sadder.
Also since events happen without the reader knowing what came before or why, it keeps you reading – you might know someone ends up dead for half the book, but it won’t stop you from reading.
As for the story – it is sad and disturbing – not sad enough to make me cry, but just enough so feel bad for the characters and wish for a sudden miracle to change their lives – that doesn’t happen though.
Without wanting to discuss the plot of the book, I’d just say in conclusion that there are several characters that I despised for their actions, although they wouldn’t take the blame for what happens 100% – rather they just make things worse, but then there are characters who don’t mean anything bad, but it’s just careless of them, or they do things in a fit of rage etc.