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The White Tiger: A Novel (Man Booker Prize)…
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The White Tiger: A Novel (Man Booker Prize) (original 2008; edition 2008)

by Aravind Adiga

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7,274356489 (3.78)643
Member:Markus56
Title:The White Tiger: A Novel (Man Booker Prize)
Authors:Aravind Adiga
Info:Free Press (2008), Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Indian stories. murder. entrpreneur

Work details

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga (2008)

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» See also 643 mentions

English (330)  Dutch (7)  French (4)  German (3)  Spanish (3)  Catalan (2)  Danish (1)  Norwegian (1)  Portuguese (1)  Hebrew (1)  Italian (1)  Lithuanian (1)  Swedish (1)  All (356)
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  mary2515 | May 23, 2017 |
An engrossing, but stark, story from Aravind Adiga narrated in the form of a letter from Balram, a member of the Indian underclass who becomes a driver for an elite Indian family, to the Chinese premier. Balram takes you into his world and his social commentary, always told in a jovial tone, brings home the scale of social injustice and corruption in India and the lack of political will to do anything about it. ( )
  sianpr | May 8, 2017 |
As a social commentary piece, Adiga scores with this story depicting the huge inequalities of Indian life: from the shining “Light” of the prosperous and booming tech/ movie industry of the cities to the feudal hardships of “the Darkness” in rural India where brutal landlords hold sway over peasants and elections are routinely rigged affairs. Revolution and insurrection are topics Balram raises in his 7-day letter to the Chinese premier. As a parable, the story works quite well, excusing the fact that the characters are exaggerated caricatures of the different social classes that make up Adiga’s tale and making allowances for some of the rather overdone scenes. Balram makes an interesting anti-hero but I found the story to have a rather mean-spirited voice in Balram’s witty barbed observations, so that I was rather happy to see this satirical story come to an end. ( )
1 vote lkernagh | Mar 19, 2017 |
Despite the innocent and almost jovial tone the novel is written in a very bleak picture of India is painted. The corruption, the lack of consideration for other humans and the abuses of the political process are all painted as everyday, expected occurrences. ( )
  kale.dyer | Jan 28, 2017 |
Funny and engaging look at life in the Indian underclass. Obviously indebted to Ralph Ellison and Richard Wright in the way the narrative is structured, but that's not a knock on the novel at all. I did think some of the shock value of the climactic event of the narrative is diminished for readers familiar with those other works, however. ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 330 (next | show all)
It's a thrilling ride through a rising global power; a place where, we learn, the brutality of the modern city is compounded by that of age-old tradition. "In the old days there were one thousand castes and destinies in India," says Balram. "These days there are two castes: Men with Big Bellies, and Men with Small Bellies."
 

» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Aravind Adigaprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lee, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rey, Santiago delTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Ramin Bahrani
First words
Mr. Premier, Sir. Neither you nor I speak English, but there are some things that can be said only in English.
Quotations
“The jails of Delhi are full of drivers who are there behind bars because they are taking the blame for their good, solid middle-class masters. We have left the villages but the masters still own us, bodies, souls, and arse. Yes, that’s right: we all live in one of the world’s greatest democracies. What a fucking joke.”
A rich man's body is like a premium cotton pillow, white and soft and blank. Ours are different. My father's spine was a knotted rope, the kind that women use in villages to pull water from wells; the clavicle curved around his neck in high relief, like a dog's collar; cuts and nicks and scars, like little whip marks in his flesh, ran down his chest and waist, reaching down below his hip bones into his buttocks. The story of a poor man's life is written on his body, in sharp pen.
The book of your revolution sits in the pit of your belly, young Indian. Crap it out, and read
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Balram Halwai is the White Tiger - the smartest boy in his village. His family is too poor for him to afford for him to finish school and he has to work in a teashop, breaking coals and wiping tables. But Balram gets his break when a rich man hires him as a chauffeur, and takes him to live in Delhi. The city is a revelation. As he drives his master to shopping malls and call centres, Balram becomes increasingly aware of immense wealth and opportunity all around him, while knowing that he will never be able to gain access to that world. As Balram broods over his situation, he realizes that there is only one way he can become part of this glamorous new India - by murdering his master."The White Tiger" presents a raw and unromanticised India, both thrilling and shocking - from the desperate, almost lawless villages along the Ganges, to the booming Wild South of Bangalore and its technology and outsourcing centres. The first-person confession of a murderer, "The White Tiger" is as compelling for its subject matter as for the voice of its narrator - amoral, cynical, unrepentant, yet deeply endearing.
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Balram Halwai is a complicated man. Servant. Philosopher. Entrepreneur. Murderer. Over the course of seven nights, by the scattered light of a preposterous chandelier, Balram tells the terrible and transfixing story of how he came to be a success in life--having nothing but his own wits to help him along.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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