Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Prize Winning Fiction
Prize Winning Fiction

1997 Booker Prize Winner

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

       
 

Publisher: Flamingo

Length: 368 pages

About: Keralan twin children's family struggles

Style: 3rd person

Where:England (Oxford) and India (Kerala)

When: 1960s and 1990s

 

Publisher’s synopsis:

Set in Kerala in the 1960s, The God of Small Things is about two children, Estha and Rahel, and the shocking consequences of a pivotal event in their young lives, the accidental death-by-drowning of a visiting English cousin. In magical and poetic language, the novel paints a vivid picture of life in a small rural Indian town, the thoughts and feelings of the two small children, and the complexity and hypocrisy of the adults in their world. It is also a poignant lesson in the destructive power of the caste system and moral and political bigotry in general.

 

Extract:

It didn't matter that the story had begun, because Kathakali discovered long ago that the secret of the Great Stories is that they have no secrets. The Great Stories are the ones you have heard and want to hear again. The ones you can enter anywhere and inhabit comfortably. They don't deceive you with thrills and trick endings.

 

Reviews:

Good:

There is no single tragedy at the heart of Arundhati Roy's devastating first novel. Although ''The God of Small Things'' opens with memories of a family grieving around a drowned child's coffin, there are plenty of other intimate horrors still to come, and they compete for the reader's sympathy with the furious energy of cats in a sack. Yet the quality of Ms. Roy's narration is so extraordinary -- at once so morally strenuous and so imaginatively supple -- that the reader remains enthralled all the way through to its agonizing finish.

The New York Times, Alice Truax, 25th May 1997 for full review click here

 

Not so good:

While Roy's powers of description are formidable, she sometimes succumbs to overwriting, forcing every minute detail to symbolize something bigger, and the pace of the story slows. But these lapses are few, and her powers coalesce magnificently in the book's second half.  

Publishers Weekly, 3rd January 1997 for full review click here

 

About the author

Arundhati Roy was born in 1961 in Kerala. She won the Booker Prize in 1997 for her first novel The God of Small Things. Roy is a well known peace activist and she was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in May, 2004, for her work in social campaigns and advocacy of non-violence. She lives in Delhi.

 

 

 

 

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<1996> -  <1998>

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ratings

Adventure

 6

Filmability

 7

Historical

 7

Humorous

 2

Intellectuality

 6

Life-changing

 7

Page turner

 6

Readability

 6

Romance

 4

 

Age guide: 12

 

 

Novels by same author:

 

Adaptations:

In 2013, Talkhiyan a Pakistani serial aired on Express Entertainment was based on this novel.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© PWF.co.uk

2016 Pulitzer Prize Winner

It's a massive day in arts and journalism because the 100th annual Pulitzer Prize winners were just announced, and there's a big surprise. 2015's best artistic and nonfiction writing across 21 categories were recognized during a ceremony Monday afternoon at Columbia University in New York City. The first Pulitzer Prize was awarded to Hebert Bayward Swope, a reporter for The New York World, in 1916. (And if you're as big a fan of Newsies as I am, that paper should ring a bell, but try to think of it more positively.)

The major prize for book nerds, the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction went to The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove Press), a legitimate surprise, if you've been paying attention to the book nerd and industry buzz. The feeling around the prize in the last few months would have you putting all your hard-earned cash down on A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara to take home the award, but that's why you should never gamble. Viet Thanh Nguyen is no less deserving, and moreover, it's his debut novel, which makes it such a wonderful win.

Extract from New York Times to view full article...

Click here

 

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