Monday, April 15, 2013

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy – Apr 12, 2013


It was no surprise that all had read this novel when it came out first. With great keenness we came together to experience the thrill again and share our appreciation. We kept in mind what Arundhati Roy said of the novel: “It is easy to forget it is a political novel. It is about caste, about violence, about contemporary things. … The most ugly thing about our country, and our culture, is caste. It is there in the book. And please don't forget that.”

Ayemenem, with the Meenachal river sustaining its luxuriance, is the Eden where the twins, Estha and Rahel, grow up. Arundhati Roy is its most diligent observer, recording the ordinary things with the memorable precision of a poet's eye. Did she keep a diary in her childhood, or is this entire world recalled from the deep recesses of her adult mind?

Bobby (away facing), Kavita, KumKum, Priya, Thommo, Mathew, Sunil
The most arresting feature of Arundhati Roy's style is the wealth of similes and metaphors, at times overwhelming the reader like a pelting of hail. Somewhere she remarks that the structure of the novel was the most difficult part of the writing, but she lost the painstakingly-made architectural plan of the book in the mêlée at her place soon after the book was published.

Bobby, Kavita, KumKum, and Priya

When the eloquent homilies of her political books on power and powerlessness are forgotten, this novel will remain, and be read and studied. So why can she not oblige with a second novel, she who said in her famous Come September speech: “For reasons that I don't fully understand, fiction dances out of me, and non-fiction is wrenched out by the aching, broken world I wake up to every morning.” See
 
Priya & KumKum exchanging life force à la Michelangelo

Come dance, Ms Roy, or we'll arrive like midwives to wrench that novel already germinating within you, waiting to be born ...

Here are the readers pictured after the session:

 Kavita, Priya, Thommo, Bobby (hidden), KumKum Mathew, Sunil, Joe

To read the full record of the session, click below