Sunday, August 27, 2006
I don't think I gave The God of Small Things sufficient attention. I started it during dreadful insomnia, read bits on trains and in a Manhattan hotel, gulped chunks in a West Virginia B&B, and finally finished it at the Liberry Service Desk. Halfway through I nearly gave up, and thought 'this won the Booker Prize'? Too much artless darting from past to present to foreshadowed future, too many characters crammed inelegantly into the first short chapters.
But it gathered strength, and paid off in a big way, despite my half-assed reading. The world's most populace democracy is a complex, chaotic whorl of contradictory moral systems and energetic cultural manifestations. So is Roy's novel, which delights and instructs and frustrates in equal measure.