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The White Tiger

by

The White Tiger Cover

ISBN13: 9781416562603
ISBN10: 1416562605
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

 

Awards

The Rooster 2009 Morning News Tournament of Books Nominee

Staff Pick

A remarkable first novel, ingeniously written in the form of a letter to the Chinese premier soon to visit India, Adiga's dark yet witty debut brings to Western readers the tense drama of a developing country and a character caught up in corruption and class struggle.
Recommended by Michal D., Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The White Tiger offers a story of coruscating wit, blistering suspense, and questionable morality, told by the most volatile, captivating, and utterly inimitable narrator that this millennium has yet seen.

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 us 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.

Born in the dark heart of India, Balram gets a break when he is hired as a driver for his village's wealthiest man, two house Pomeranians (Puddles and Cuddles), and the rich man's (very unlucky) son. From behind the wheel of their Honda City, Balram's new world is a revelation. While his peers flip through the pages of Murder Weekly ("Love — Rape — Revenge!"), barter for girls, drink liquor (Thunderbolt), and perpetuate the Great Rooster Coop of Indian society, Balram watches his employers bribe foreign ministers for tax breaks, barter for girls, drink liquor (single-malt whisky), and play their own role in the Rooster Coop. Balram learns how to siphon gas, deal with corrupt mechanics, and refill and resell Johnnie Walker Black Label bottles (all but one). He also finds a way out of the Coop that no one else inside it can perceive.

Balram's eyes penetrate India as few outsiders can: the cockroaches and the call centers; the prostitutes and the worshippers; the ancient and Internet cultures; the water buffalo and (trapped in so many kinds of cages that escape is (almost) impossible) the white tiger. And with a charisma as undeniable as it is unexpected, Balram teaches us that religion doesn't create virtue, and money doesn't solve every problem — but decency can still be found in a corrupt world, and you can get what you want out of life if you eavesdrop on the right conversations.

The White Tiger recalls The Death of Vishnu and Bangkok 8 in ambition, scope, and narrative genius, with a mischief and personality all its own. Amoral, irreverent, deeply endearing, and utterly contemporary, this novel is an international publishing sensation — and a startling, provocative debut.

Review:

"First-time author Adiga has created a memorable tale of one taxi driver's hellish experience in modern India. Told with close attention to detail, whether it be the vivid portrait of India he paints or the transformation of Balram Halwai into a bloodthirsty murderer, Adiga writes like a seasoned professional. John Lee delivers an absolutely stunning performance, reading with a realistic and unforced East Indian dialect. He brings the story to life, reading with passion and respect for Adiga's prose. Lee currently sits at the top of the professional narrator's ladder; an actor so gifted both in his delivery and expansive palette of vocal abilities that he makes it sound easy. A Free Press hardcover (Reviews, Jan. 14). (May)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Extraordinary and brilliant....Adiga is a real writer — that is to say, someone who forges an original voice and vision." Adam Lively, the Sunday Times

Review:

"Fierce and funny....A satire as sharp as it gets." Michael Upchurch, the Seattle Times

Review:

"An exhilarating, side-splitting account of India today, as well as an eloquent howl at her many injustices. Adiga enters the literary scene resplendent in battle dress and ready to conquer. Let us bow to him." Gary Shteyngart, author of Absurdistan and The Russian Debutante's Handbook

Review:

"Darkly comic....Balram's appealingly sardonic voice and acute observations of the social order are both winning and unsettling." New Yorker

Review:

"This fast-moving novel, set in India, is being sold as a corrective to the glib, dreamy exoticism Western readers often get....If these are the hands that built India, their grandkids really are going to kick America's ass....BUY IT." New York Magazine

Review:

"Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger is one of the most powerful books I've read in decades. No hyperbole. This debut novel from an Indian journalist living in Mumbai hit me like a kick to the head — the same effect Richard Wright's Native Son and Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man had." USA Today

Review:

"There is a new Muse stalking global narrative: brown, angry, hilarious, half-educated, rustic-urban, iconoclastic, paan-spitting, word-smithing — and in the case of Aravind Adiga she hails from a town called Laxmangarh. This is the authentic voice of the Third World, like you've never heard it before. Adiga is a global Gorky, a modern Kipling who grew up, and grew up mad. The future of the novel lies here." John Burdett, author of Bangkok 8

Review:

"Adiga's training as a journalist lends the immediacy of breaking news to his writing, but it is his richly detailed storytelling that will captivate his audience....The White Tiger echoes masterpieces of resistance and oppression (both The Jungle and Native Son come to mind)...[and] contains passages of startling beauty....A book that carefully balances fable and pure observation." Lee Thomas, San Francisco Chronicle

Synopsis:

The white tiger of this novel is Balram Halwai, a poor Indian villager whose great ambition leads him to the zenith of Indian business culture, the world of the Bangalore entrepreneur. On the occasion of the president of China’s impending trip to Bangalore, Balram writes a letter to him describing his transformation and his experience as driver and servant to a wealthy Indian family, which he thinks exemplifies the contradictions and complications of Indian society.

The White Tiger recalls The Death of Vishnu and Bangkok 8 in ambition, scope, and narrative genius, with a mischief and personality all its own. Amoral, irreverent, deeply endearing, and utterly contemporary, this novel is an international publishing sensation — and a startling, provocative debut.

About the Author

Aravind Adiga was born in India in 1974 and raised partly in Australia. He attended Columbia and Oxford universities. A former correspondent for Time magazine, he has also been published in the Financial Times. He lives in Mumbai, India.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 14 comments:

Patusan, September 25, 2011 (view all comments by Patusan)
I hate to admit this, but I didn't even have White Tiger in the stack by my bed until my sister said the reliable readers in her book club loved it. A tragicomic view from the next-to-bottom rung of the globalized economic ladder. Not among the completely dispossessed, the main character is a survivor in the mass migration from the village to the metropolis. His first-person narrative fascinates us with detail and pains us with the narcissism of small differences as he unself-consciously aspires to advance in life while expressing his disdain for those above and below him. White Tiger gives that sense of universal humanity that the novel is the highest expression of.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)
possumkid, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by possumkid)
Awesome black comedy of the way life is in India. For rolling around on the floor laughing and for insights into survival as an underdog on the sub-continent, this is THE book.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)
Tori, July 15, 2010 (view all comments by Tori)
There is something about Balram that has stayed with me ever since I finished The White Tiger. He is at once abhorrent, disgusting, pitiable and yet somehow, I cheered him on every step of the way. I rejoiced for him, worried for him and felt like I was there with him when he commits his drastic act of defiance. I will not make excuses for him, but I will say that I forgave him entirely.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 14 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9781416562603
Author:
Adiga, Aravind
Publisher:
Free Press
Author:
Mukherjee, Bharati
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - General
Subject:
Poor
Subject:
Businesspeople
Subject:
Mystery fiction
Subject:
Epistolary fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
The White Tiger, adiga, novel, Balram Halwai, India, caste, caste system, education, Indian business, outsourcing, booker prize, booker short list, service, servitude, indentured, Bangalore, contradictions and complications of Indian society
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20081031
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 9.99 lb
Age Level:
Between 25 and 35. Complexion: Blackish. Face: Ova

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The White Tiger Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Free Press - English 9781416562603 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

A remarkable first novel, ingeniously written in the form of a letter to the Chinese premier soon to visit India, Adiga's dark yet witty debut brings to Western readers the tense drama of a developing country and a character caught up in corruption and class struggle.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "First-time author Adiga has created a memorable tale of one taxi driver's hellish experience in modern India. Told with close attention to detail, whether it be the vivid portrait of India he paints or the transformation of Balram Halwai into a bloodthirsty murderer, Adiga writes like a seasoned professional. John Lee delivers an absolutely stunning performance, reading with a realistic and unforced East Indian dialect. He brings the story to life, reading with passion and respect for Adiga's prose. Lee currently sits at the top of the professional narrator's ladder; an actor so gifted both in his delivery and expansive palette of vocal abilities that he makes it sound easy. A Free Press hardcover (Reviews, Jan. 14). (May)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Extraordinary and brilliant....Adiga is a real writer — that is to say, someone who forges an original voice and vision."
"Review" by , "Fierce and funny....A satire as sharp as it gets."
"Review" by , "An exhilarating, side-splitting account of India today, as well as an eloquent howl at her many injustices. Adiga enters the literary scene resplendent in battle dress and ready to conquer. Let us bow to him."
"Review" by , "Darkly comic....Balram's appealingly sardonic voice and acute observations of the social order are both winning and unsettling."
"Review" by , "This fast-moving novel, set in India, is being sold as a corrective to the glib, dreamy exoticism Western readers often get....If these are the hands that built India, their grandkids really are going to kick America's ass....BUY IT."
"Review" by , "Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger is one of the most powerful books I've read in decades. No hyperbole. This debut novel from an Indian journalist living in Mumbai hit me like a kick to the head — the same effect Richard Wright's Native Son and Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man had."
"Review" by , "There is a new Muse stalking global narrative: brown, angry, hilarious, half-educated, rustic-urban, iconoclastic, paan-spitting, word-smithing — and in the case of Aravind Adiga she hails from a town called Laxmangarh. This is the authentic voice of the Third World, like you've never heard it before. Adiga is a global Gorky, a modern Kipling who grew up, and grew up mad. The future of the novel lies here."
"Review" by , "Adiga's training as a journalist lends the immediacy of breaking news to his writing, but it is his richly detailed storytelling that will captivate his audience....The White Tiger echoes masterpieces of resistance and oppression (both The Jungle and Native Son come to mind)...[and] contains passages of startling beauty....A book that carefully balances fable and pure observation."
"Synopsis" by , The white tiger of this novel is Balram Halwai, a poor Indian villager whose great ambition leads him to the zenith of Indian business culture, the world of the Bangalore entrepreneur. On the occasion of the president of China’s impending trip to Bangalore, Balram writes a letter to him describing his transformation and his experience as driver and servant to a wealthy Indian family, which he thinks exemplifies the contradictions and complications of Indian society.

The White Tiger recalls The Death of Vishnu and Bangkok 8 in ambition, scope, and narrative genius, with a mischief and personality all its own. Amoral, irreverent, deeply endearing, and utterly contemporary, this novel is an international publishing sensation — and a startling, provocative debut.

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