The God of Small Things
Author: Arundhati Roy
Year Published: 1997
Genre: slice of life
They all crossed into forbidden territory. They all tampered with the laws that lay down who should be loved, and how. And how much.
Arundhati Roy’s sole work of fiction, The God of Small Things, invents a new kind of language to describe the details that create us, shape us, and destroy us. The year is 1969. The setting is Kerala, the southernmost tip of India. Twins, Esthappen and Rahel, live in the aftermath of their family’s dysfunctional wreckage. The caste system hides those they truly love and duty twists those they are told to love into shadows of their true selves. A Christmas visit from their uncle’s ex-wife and daughter changes their life in an instant. Told from the perspective of a child, this masterpiece reveals the painful effects of trauma inflicted upon innocence too soon. Parts of this novel made me feel sick, riveted, heartbroken, but always deeply touched. Roy possesses a heightened awareness of the world in which we live and portrays it wondrously throughout this palpable tale.
Childhood tiptoed out.
Silence slid in like a bolt.
Someone switched off the light.
Not death. Just the end of living.