I haven’t done a book review in awhile! I found this one inside a Starbucks that has a neighborhood book-swap-in-a-box. I haven’t read an actual book in a really long time, either! I’ve become a digital convert, so it was especially nice to slip back into old-fashioned nostalgia. The book was covered in at least one person’s scribbles and insight and underlined passages, the cover’s tattered. I miss old, well-loved and traveled books. It’s already telling you the sort of review you’ll give it.
I gave the book four stars on Goodreads:
Lyrically beautiful. Roy’s play on words is brilliant, especially as it’s through a child’s eye. A memorable tale that won’t leave- the characters are described and portrayed so expertly, it’s hard to convince yourself that their story is fictional. It shows the deep flaws of humanity- the self-absorption and indifference, the contempt for anything pure and innocent, and the societal and racial divides that all combine to make two children into the surrounding adults’ whipping boy and girl.
And then you read the author Q & A in the back, and hear what Roy went through following publication (for over ten years!). Charged with public indecency (over something controversial, yes, but very quickly skimmed over in a ‘It just happened’ sort of way), yet she talks about how all Indian movies while she was growing up had violent rape scenes. Pretty convoluted and frightening to get such a taste of someone else’s life. Especially considering the US’s sudden outpouring of erotica that comes with no fallout. As writers in the US and similar countries, we have no concept of fearing that our books will end up causing us harm. Or death.
Highly recommend this book.