When I read the novel ‘God of Small Things’ , I was young, say around thirty. I had a high opinion of the novel and cherished its memory, narration, language and even talked to many people about that novel. I became one of the admirers of Arundhati Roy. Her subsequent essays reinforced my belief. I hold her in high esteem. I was anxiously awaiting her second novel to be released in 2017.
In the meantime, I had come across ‘God of Small Things’ and started to read it again. I was more mature. Now, I am not easily moved by only by language or style or any single aspect of any text. Again the novel proved to be good at my age (58). While I skipped many descriptive passages, the strength of the novel lies in its subject. A tragedy, flowing from the a drowning of a girl in the course of innocent childhood delinquency and an extra-marital, intercaste affair which leads to unjustifiable death of an innocent The boy is separated man at the hands of police. The children had to acquiesce a with a false version of the incident for the fear of going to jail for a crime they had not committed. The injustice of the situation comes out very passionately. Because of this scandal in the house, and to save further damage of reputation and inquiry, the boy is separated from his mother and sister for the next 20 years till he becomes a young man. He becomes somewhat mentally retarded. Mother and daughter are also sent away from the place. All this done to uphold societal values. May be there are some fictional accounts but undoubtedly there are real life incidents in the novel. THe power of the truth pushes the narrative forward. The untouchable dead man, who did nothing as alleged, will continue to seek answers from the readers.
Now I understand the the reason for the author taking up the causes of downtrodden, better than before.
A very good novel in the first reading and good novel for a second reading.