Book: The White Tiger

Author:Aravind Adiga

Rating: 2.5/5

The White Tiger-Aravind Adiga

The White Tiger is the story of Balram, the son of a rickshaw puller, who lives in a small Indian village. He finds the destitution of his family repulsive and decides to break away from it. He is constantly on the lookout of opportunities that could alleviate his poverty. He learns how to drive and manages a driver's job with the landlord of his village. Lady Luck smiles upon him when Balram is asked to accompany the landlord's son to Delhi as a driver. In Delhi, Balram learns the ways of the urban society. A keen observer and a fast learner, Balram realizes very soon that a little dishonesty can bring him enough money for a secure future. So he robs and murders his employer, runs away to Bangalore with his loot and starts his own business there. Years later, Balram is seen as an influential member of the Bangalore power circle successfully steering his career from one height to another.

Social/Historical context:

The book is set in present day India. The White Tiger brings to contrast the disparity between progressive Indian cities and regressive Indian villages. It depicts the different faces of urban and rural corruption, brings to light various cultural stigmas associated with caste and religion, and is able to pin point multiple other societal malaises.

Writing Style:

The book is written in the form letters written by the protagonist, Balram, to a Chinese ambassador. The life guiding principles of Balram are depicted through a course of incidents and never seem didactic. The book is fast paced and offers a whole lot of virulent criticism of India. The humor is black. The language raw.

My Thoughts:

I think the book is lop sided....the ugliness is exaggerated and one cringes from some of the ideas mentioned in the book. I don't know which Indian village Adiga has been to, but from my experience of 2 villages in north and east India, I could not relate to the destitution described in the book. True, there is a lot of scope for social,cultural and economic improvement in Indian villages, but I believe, in the same villages one would still find some school masters that children can learn from, there would be some doctors who would help the poor. Also, I know rich landed farmers who take good care of their farm hands. And I am yet to see a rickshaw puller who has not named his son. Adiga, your story is sensational and may sell, but I don't think it is plausible. I believe there is hope in the Indian Darkness.

Book Reviewed By Ashmita Saha

The White Tiger-Arvind Adiga-Review#2

The White Tiger-Arvind Adiga-Review#3

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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Nope!!! Not rated yet
The book deals with unrealistic facts that mock the writer's apprehension of Indian society, as a whole. To me, it seems, he has just tried to portray …

it was ok, not so good as it is being appreciated Not rated yet
a very naive way of looking at a life of a deprived and underprivileged class. He has chosen a character in a manner through which he can lash out against …

no Not rated yet
exaggerated ideas fill the book. though there is a scope of large scale improvement in the socio- economic situation of india, it is not so bad as shown …

Yes Not rated yet
hey, just read your review....i agree that the truth is far more complex than Adiga's simplified view...but it isnt as simple as you said...i dont know …

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