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Slumdog Millionaire | [Vikas Swarup]

Slumdog Millionaire

Vikas Swarup's spectacular debut novel, the inspiration for the award-winning film, opens in a jail cell in Mumbai, where Ram Mohammad Thomas is being held after correctly answering all 12 questions on India's biggest quiz show, Who Will Win a Billion? It is hard to believe that a poor orphan who has never gone to school could win such a contest. But through a series of exhilarating tales, Ram explains to his lawyer how episodes in his life gave him the answer to each question.
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Publisher's Summary

Vikas Swarup's spectacular debut novel, the inspiration for the award-winning film, opens in a jail cell in Mumbai, where Ram Mohammad Thomas is being held after correctly answering all 12 questions on India's biggest quiz show, Who Will Win a Billion?

It is hard to believe that a poor orphan who has never read a newspaper or gone to school could win such a contest. But through a series of exhilarating tales, Ram explains to his lawyer how episodes in his life gave him the answer to each question. In his warm-hearted tale lies all the comedy, tragedy, joy and pathos of modern India.

Hear the whole story behind the Academy Award-winning film Slumdog Millionaire!

©2005 Vikas Swarup; (P)2009 BBC Audiobooks America

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (850 )
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4.5 (535 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Roy Beaumont, TX, United States 08-19-09
    Roy Beaumont, TX, United States 08-19-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Delightful"

    I generally avoid fiction. This time I just wanted to know what all the hype was about. I haven't seen nor do I plan to see the movie, but the audio version of the novel was quite a surprise. The writing is amusing and the reading is excellent.

    Essentially, this is the story of one Ram Mohammad Thomas (yes that is an interfaith name) who wins a billion rupees in a quiz show. He is accused of throwing the quiz and the novel explains how he "obtained" the answers.

    The story-line is a little contrived, but it doesn't matter. The reader is repaid many times over. The humor is wonderful and the stories will keep the listener's attention. If you tolerated Forest Gump. there is much more here for the interested.

    Slumdog isn't high brow, but is an entertaining listen. Take a chance, relax, and enjoy the trip.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy Bloomfield, MI, United States 09-04-10
    Nancy Bloomfield, MI, United States 09-04-10 Member Since 2001

    Never got to go to a library until the age of 8 ! Since then I have become a book addict. History, biography and fiction all thrill me.

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    "I did not think this was my kind of book!!"

    I didn't see the movie and the book didn't have a real draw for me. I loved it from start to finish!! On top of a great story, wonderful writing and characters who were so real to me, the narrator is excellent. Fun book.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    August LA VERGNE, TN, United States 10-19-14
    August LA VERGNE, TN, United States 10-19-14
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    Story
    "Almost no culture shock, just an amazing story!"
    Any additional comments?

    Slumdog Millionaire is a quick read (the Audible recording is just over ten hours) and if I’d been actually reading it, I think it’s one that I would have been frustrated having to put down. As it was, I listened to it in its entirety in a single day at work. I usually listen at double speed, but I start at normal speed just to make sure I can follow everything well. The fact that the story is set in India, a place I’ve never been, with a culture I’m only minutely familiar with, I didn’t feel lost. I was swept away. No, I don’t think I could go there and make sense of anything, but for the time I spent there with Ram, I belonged in that world. What culture shock I had was surprisingly unimportant. I suppose you could argue that the story could happen anywhere, but I honestly think the setting was perfect for the tale Swarup was telling. I honestly cannot imagine this story set in America.

    There is so much tying Ram’s past to his present life during and after the taping of the show, that I have to give great commendation to the author. Swarup left no loose ends, even wrapping up one that I hadn’t really thought of as being a loose end. He brings characters you think are somewhat inconsequential, or ones that walk into and out of Ram’s life, back into his adult life from his childhood in ways that are both surprising and satisfying. The questions for the quiz are great, and seeing the behind the scenes filming of the quiz show was enough to make me giddy while still making me hate the show’s producers for how they look down on Ram. Swarup has created an amazing character with a huge heart, one that you cannot help but sympathize with, even when he makes wrong or poor decisions. It’s easy to understand Ram without having to be dragged through his every thought process. On the whole, this is just an amazing, well thought-out novel that is pulled off well in the writing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 08-29-14
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    "So good I have listened to it twice."
    Any additional comments?

    Great audiobook. Interesting story, great performance. As usual, better than the movie (which was great). I highly recommend Slumdog Millionaire.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mr. D Idaho, United States 06-26-14
    Mr. D Idaho, United States 06-26-14 Member Since 2009
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    "Even if you have seen the movie, read this."
    Any additional comments?

    This book has a lot going for it. It has a unique plot, the main character is someone you really want to root for and it is an education of a way of life very remote for most of us.

    I knew the story, I had seen the movie, but even so I couldn't put the book(headphones) down. As usual, the book was much better even though the movie was good as well.

    If you enjoyed the movie and want to prolong the experience, give this a listen.

    Narration was good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Adam 04-22-14
    Adam 04-22-14
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    "Pleasantly surprised"

    I don't care for sex and foul language in my books and knowing this was made into an R rated movie I purchased it cautiously. I was pleasantly surprised. I would label the book PG-13. There is no explicit sex and while there is some swearing it was not gratuitous or excessive. The book has a great moral and a postive message. After listening to the book I looked up the summary of the movie. It doesn't sound like the movie is much like the book at all. I'm glad I listened to the book. I would rate it in the top 3 that I have listened to so far.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jon Crawfurd ST PETERSBURG, FL USA 03-07-14
    Jon Crawfurd ST PETERSBURG, FL USA 03-07-14 Member Since 2012
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    "I love a good story"

    I love it when I have two views of a great story: cinema and book! I enjoyed both, but I especially enjoyed the pictorial sense of India down-deep, and I enjoyed listening to the main character in his own voice. The story is exceedingly far fetched, but very-very enjoyable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim EVANSDALE, IOWA, United States 03-03-14
    Jim EVANSDALE, IOWA, United States 03-03-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Don't just watch the movie, read this book."

    I had never seen the movie before reading this book. I have since watched the movie, and although they are similar, the book far outshines the movie.

    The book has a bit of a fairy tale/whimsical quality to it. Don't get me wrong, there are still some awful things happening in the world of Slumdog Millionaire, but it just doesn't seem quite as dark as the movie.

    This has been one of my favorite audio books of the last few years.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Justine PORTLAND, OR, United States 02-28-14
    Justine PORTLAND, OR, United States 02-28-14 Member Since 2009
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    "the movie was good; the book is BRILLIANT"
    Any additional comments?

    The movie ran with the general premise of the book, and it was a nice watch particularly for the scenery of India (the good, bad and ugly), but there it ends. The characters in the movie are not taken from the book at all - and the stories told in the book are captivating, and complex, and the characters authentic, yet layered and unique. I listened for six hours the first day, and finished it the next. The narrator is excellent - one of the best I have ever listened to. To those who are annoyed because he does not portray Indians with a Texan accent, because it would be easier for you to understand... whatever. I have no words for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Simonton Texas, USA 02-13-14
    J. Simonton Texas, USA 02-13-14 Member Since 2012

    Fun Happens

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    "Captivating Read"
    Would you listen to Slumdog Millionaire again? Why?

    I would listen to it again because the novel weaves so many stories together. I felt like the book teaches readers bits about Indian History and the current social climate without feeling like a lecture.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I have not watched the movie- so I did not really know the outcome until the very end. The suspense pushed me on to get to the end of the story.


    Which character – as performed by Christopher Simpson – was your favorite?

    Ram- the main character was by far my favorite. Christopher Simpson did an excellent job making me feel Ram's emotions and honesty throughout the book.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Parts of the book are extremely sad and show a harsh reality that Westerners may not be aware of. I did shed a tear or two while listening to this book and definitely had a few laugh out loud moments.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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