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The White Tiger: A Novel | [Aravind Adiga]

The White Tiger: A Novel

Balram Halwai is a complicated man. Servant. Philosopher. Entrepreneur. Murderer. 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. Through Balram's eyes, we see India as we've never seen it before: the cockroaches and the call centers, the prostitutes and the worshippers, the water buffalo and, trapped in so many kinds of cages that escape is (almost) impossible, the white tiger.

With a charisma as undeniable as it is unexpected, Balram teaches us that religion doesn't create morality and money doesn't solve every problem.

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Publisher's Summary

British Book Awards, Author of the Year, 2009.

Man Booker Prize, Fiction, 2008.

No saris. No scents. No spices. No music. No lyricism. No illusions.

This is India now.

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 a village in the dark heart of India, Balram gets a break when he is hired as a driver for a wealthy man, two Pomeranians (Puddles and Cuddles), and the rich man's (very unlucky) son.

Through Balram's eyes, we see India as we've never seen it before: the cockroaches and the call centers, the prostitutes and the worshippers, the water buffalo and, trapped in so many kinds of cages that escape is (almost) impossible, the white tiger.

With a charisma as undeniable as it is unexpected, Balram teaches us that religion doesn't create morality 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.

©2008 Aravind Adiga; (P)2008 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"Balram's evolution from likable village boy to cold-blooded killer is fascinating and believable." (Library Journal)
"A brutal view of India's class struggles is cunningly presented in Adiga's debut....It's the perfect antidote to lyrical India." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (1957 )
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3.9 (791 )
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4.2 (794 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Kathryn North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada 07-02-09
    Kathryn North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada 07-02-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    2
    2
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    Overall
    "Wonderful first audiobook--I'm hooked!!"

    This is my first purchase from audible.com, and I can only hope future books are as insightful and entertaining as the White tiger. My husband and I could not turn it off on a recent road trip, so captivating was the story and the narration (John Lee--I think there is another version available with a different narrator).

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    The Fan Los Angeles, CA USA 01-26-09
    The Fan Los Angeles, CA USA 01-26-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    27
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    12
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    Overall
    "A wonderful book read by a first-rate reader"

    I loved the book and the reading. First-rate all the way. While it's by no means a chair-gripper, it is nonetheless compelling in terms of its psychological portrait. I recommend the book without reservation.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily East Hampton, NY, USA 01-12-09
    Emily East Hampton, NY, USA 01-12-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    6
    4
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    Overall
    "Totally satisfying."

    Can't wait to read more by this author and hear more texts read by narrator.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maury Davis SAGINAW, MI, US 01-05-09
    Maury Davis SAGINAW, MI, US 01-05-09 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    49
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    19
    5
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    Overall
    "Very good read"

    Excellent book.

    Very well narrated by Mr. Lee.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katie Mentor, OH, United States 12-07-08
    Katie Mentor, OH, United States 12-07-08 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    103
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    206
    26
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    Overall
    "fascinating"

    I really enjoyed the main character, his ego and his quirks. A very engrossing listen.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ajit westford, MA, USA 12-31-08
    Ajit westford, MA, USA 12-31-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
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    15
    3
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    "an ok read"

    If you are an indian then there is nothing new or original in this book. If you have never been to india then please do not assume this to be the representative novel. I can think of a hundred other books i would rather have read first before this one. I think this one is a mistake by the booker board...by a long shot.

    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    justin black 10-17-09

    JnB

    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    ratings
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    644
    8
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    Overall
    "A great start"

    The story starts out very interesting and entertaining. But the plot was weak. About half way through, it lost it's novelty, and the story was not all that exciting.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Faith Santa Fe, NM, United States 09-07-09
    Faith Santa Fe, NM, United States 09-07-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
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    58
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    Overall
    "Humorous and quick read"

    I could listen to John Lee read a menu and be entertained. This is a darkly humorous look at modern India (I have no way to judge its accuracy) and the neverending politics of wealth. I didn't really understand why it was written as a sort of "letter," but that wasn't particularly distracting.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Lynn, MA, United States 05-27-09
    Michael Lynn, MA, United States 05-27-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    Overall
    "A lot of pain for a little knowledge"

    This was a performance monologue. Picture being in a small theater in New York and someone reads an open letter of their life. Now pretend they are doing in an Indian accident who writes in a overtly simplistic matter. At its best it was an incite into the reality of the culture. At its worst it was punishment for something I did in another life.

    6 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Oliver 06-01-10
    Oliver 06-01-10 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
    ratings
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    162
    58
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    2
    28
    Overall
    "Pretty Easy listen"

    Pretty easy listen and easy to follow. I would listen to it again.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
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