I was aware, before starting this book, that people either love or hate it. It did win the Man Booker prize, though, and I usually enjoy the winners.
Alas, I wasn't totally thrilled with this book. The beautiful and captivating writing carried me about two thirds of the way through. But then, I found I really didn't care what happened to the characters -- and, suspected nothing at all would happen. I almost, almost, didn't even finish it. I forced myself to do so. I wasn't sorry I read it, but I think it's one of those books you need to be in the mood for. I find myself lately pressed for time - with very limited time to read. A meandering, lovely book that doesn't really go anywhere doesn't really fit into my frame of mind right now. So by all means, take my review with a grain of salt.
The writing is beautiful, and it is a great character study of a large family. It's just that nothing much happens, which isn't the prerequisite for a great book -- you just have to be in the mood for it.