Sapna Sinha, an ordinary salesgirl in an electronics store in downtown Delhi, is approached by Vinay Mohan Acharya, a billionaire industrialist and one of India's richest men. He offers to make her CEO of his company. There is only one catch - she must pass seven tests from the "textbook of life". Thus begins the most challenging journey Sapna has ever undertaken - one that will test her character, her courage, and her capabilities. Along the way she encounters a host of memorable personalities, from a vain Bollywood superstar to a kleptomaniac Gandhian. At stake is a business empire worth 10 billion dollars and the future she has always dreamed of for herself and her family. But are the seven tests real? Or is Acharya playing a game driven by a perverse fantasy?
Vikas Swarup, acclaimed author of Slumdog Millionaireand Six Suspects, has written a compelling, suspenseful tale about the lure of money and the power of dreams. The Accidental Apprentice is international crime fiction at its most entertaining.
©2014 Vikas Swarup (P)2014 Blackstone Audiobooks
I am a big fan of Vikas Swarup's 'Q & A', the book upon which the movie 'Slumdog Millionaire' is very loosely based; in fact, I will be teaching it again this fall in a gen ed lit course. So, naturally, I was eager to read his latest novel. Sadly, it did not live up to his first.
Like 'Q & A,' Swarup has created a frame around which to build his story. In the former, it was a series of questions the protagonist is asked on a game show; here, it is seven tests that the protagonist must pass in order to be named CEO of a huge company, a prize that will enable her to leave her boring, low-paying job in an electronics store and to provide for her widowed mother and younger sister. Both story lines are a bit fantastic, but this one lacks the delight in coincidence that figured into Q & A. Instead, Sapna is put to a series of grueling tests--without ever knowing until they are over that they actually were tests. Some of them border on downright cruelty. Sapna is warned that the final test will be the most difficult. It certainly is--but it is also way over the top and unbelievable, as is the final resolution.
I want to feel good when I complete a story & am a little harsh on depressing ones. There are a few sad ones that I love but not many.
I loved Slumdog Millionaire and I was really looking forward to this. I was slightly disappointed. This was entertaining and I liked it but it lacked depth in most characters and the plot was shaky.
Sneha Mathan was absolutely enchanting and the best part of the entire experience. I will be looking for more from her.
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