Andrew Holgate, Sunday Times
`Unlike almost any other Indian novel you might have read in recent years, this page-turner offers a completely bald, angry, unadorned portrait of the county as seen from the bottom of the heap; there's not a sniff of saffron or a swirl of sari anywhere... The Indian tourist board won't be pleased, but you'll read it in a trice and find yourself gripped.'
`In the grand illusions of a "rising" India, Aravind Adiga has found a subject Gogol might have envied. With remorselessly and delightfully mordant wit The White Tiger anatomises the fantastic cravings of the rich; it evokes, too, with startling accuracy and tenderness, the no less desperate struggles of the deprived.'
Gary Shteyngart, author of Absurdistan and The Russian Debutante's Handbook
`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
Neel Mukherjee, Sunday Telegraph
`Blazingly savage and brilliant... Not a single detail in this novel rings false or feels confected. The White Tiger is an excoriating piece of work... That it also manages to be suffused with mordant wit, modulating to clear-eyed pathos, means Adiga is going places as a writer.'
Soumya Bhattacharya, Independent
`Aravind Adiga's riveting, razor-sharp debut novel explores with wit and insight the realities of these two Indias, and reveals what happens when the inhabitants of one collude and then collide with those of the other... Halwai's voice - wised-up, mordant, sardonic, self-mocking and utterly without illusions - is as compelling as it is persuasive, and one of the triumphs of the book... His is a novel that has come not a moment too soon.'
Adam Lively, Sunday Times
`Extraordinary and brilliant... Adiga is a real writer - that is to say, someone who forges an original voice and vision. There is the voice of Halwai - witty, pithy, ultimately psychopathic... Remarkable.'
Tina Jackson, Metro (4 stars)
`Adiga's sharp, funny and angry book is a marvellous antidote to patronizing clichés about the exoticism of the Orient. Instead, his 21st century India is a disgusting place that stinks, swarms with people on the make and whose only redeeming feature seems to be the survival instinct that the amoral, irreverent Halwai has in buckets.'
David Mattin, Independent
`Dazzling... [The White Tiger]is an Indian novel that explodes the clichés... It's a thrilling ride through a global power... Brimming with idiosyncrasy, sarcastic, cunning, and often hilarious... Arch defenders of India's claim to be truly democratic, even-handedly prosperous and corruption-free (and these must be few outside of the Indian cabinet) might balk at The White Tiger. Everyone else, surely, will be seduced by it.'
WINNER OF THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2008
Balram Halwai is the White Tiger - the smartest boy in his village. His family is too poor for him to afford for him to finish school and he has to work in a teashop, breaking coals and wiping tables. But Balram gets his break when a rich man hires him as a chauffeur, and takes him to live in Delhi. The city is a revelation. As he drives his master to shopping malls and call centres, Balram becomes increasingly aware of immense wealth and opportunity all around him, while knowing that he will never be able to gain access to that world. As Balram broods over his situation, he realizes that there is only one way he can become part of this glamorous new India - by murdering his master.
The White Tiger presents a raw and unromanticised India, both thrilling and shocking - from the desperate, almost lawless villages along the Ganges, to the booming Wild South of Bangalore and its technology and outsourcing centres. The first-person confession of a murderer, The White Tiger is as compelling for its subject matter as for the voice of its narrator - amoral, cynical, unrepentant, yet deeply endearing.
About the Author
Aravind Adiga was born in Madras in 1974 and was raised in Australia. He studied at Columbia and Oxford Universities. A former correspondent in India for Time magazine, his articles have also appeared in publications like the Financial Times, the Independent, and the Sunday Times. He lives in Mumbai. The White Tiger is his first novel.