At 20, ‘The God of Small Things’ still is special

Arundhati Roy’s “The God of Small Things” won the Booker Prize in 1997. (Photo by Shaima Faisel)

By Shaima Faisel

ABU DHABI—The God of Small Things has turned 20 years old, and it remains one of the most graceful, beautiful love stories of the last few decades.

Arundhati Roy’s novel, published by IndiaInk, won the Booker Prize in 199, telling a story of love’s limits. The God of Small Things revolves around the life of Ammu and her twin children, in their newly shifted home in Kerala, India, amidst the communist and caste systems. The book tells us how the lives of the characters change in the course of events.

The book is very real and you can feel a connection with the characters while you are reading it. The very descriptive writing style of Ms. Roy helps us imagine the small town of Kerala, the rivers, the people who play in the background as the kids grow. The very organized story takes us through the collapsed family in the south of India, where we can find connections with ourselves.

As Roy says, “only once again they broke the love laws, that lay down who should be loved, and how and how much.”

Her novel speaks about a very tight society that isn’t open to listening to anything. Everything including love is written and managed by the laws and rules. It determines who people should talk to and whom they should look down upon. It is an expose of the caste system.

The story moves back and forth between the twins’ life in the present and as kids.

The book also shows us how the smallest things and experiences from our childhood shape our entire lives. Ms. Roy seems to imply that in some ways we are never getting older; we are just getting used to life. The language used in the novel is relatively rich and tough sledding for the uninitiated, and she uses an abundance of metaphors and similes throughout the book.

I recommend everyone read this book as we can all see a little of ourselves in the characters.

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11 Responses to At 20, ‘The God of Small Things’ still is special

  1. mariamjs83 says:

    thank you for sharing this interesting review about this book. i will sure read it.

  2. Ayesha Saif says:

    Good review with great explaination about the novel. I like when Ms. Roy said “in some ways we are never getting older; we are just getting used to life” and I totally agree with that.

  3. Eman says:

    I’ll definitely buy it, it’s a really great review about the book.

  4. very catchy title and great review that excites you to look for the book.

  5. great review, you made me to look out more and read the book

  6. Alreem Mohamed says:

    I never heard about this book but I definitely want to check it out after reading this review.
    Thank you for sharing it with us!

  7. Asma says:

    Dear Shaima, it is an interesting review, I might buy the book . Thank you for sharing.

  8. Suhaila Al Dosari says:

    Thank you Shaima for the review.

  9. Ayesha Abdulla Omar says:

    Great review, never heard of the book but I’ll definitely check it out. Thanks for sharing!

  10. umkalthoom says:

    this review made me realize on what I’m missing out , I’ll try to pick to up when i visit the bookstore, its now on my TBR list

  11. Meera Al Hammadi says:

    great review, made me want to read it and find out more. I may give it a try!

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