WITH its "greygreen" veil, the Meenachil river spills straight out of the pages of The God of Small Things. But Aymanam—Arundhati Roy took the liberty to change it to Ayemenem—the somnolent village that comes alive in the book, is a picture of still life. The Booker Prize has left the village folk serenely unmoved.
But in Corpus Christie, the school run by Arundhati's mother Mary Roy where the social elite of Kottayam send their children to pick up a fashionable western liberal education, the atmosphere is electric. The institution has emerged as a post-Booker control room where information about the book and its author disseminates, where an embarrassed press corps is greeted with the query: "Have you read the book?"