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321 Reviews
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176 of 183 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Can the tiger escape his cage?
Balram Halwai is a poor low-caste Indian, the son of a rickshaw-puller who somehow manages to crawl his way up to be an entrepreneur in Bangalore. He tells his story via a series of letters written to Wen Jiabao, the Chinese Premier who is about to visit Bangalore. The poor parts of India are referred to as the Darkness which is a world filled with hunger, servitude and...
Published on 10 Dec 2008 by Wynne Kelly

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114 of 127 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A decent read but a disappointing Booker.
We agreed to read the Booker winner for book club, and this book was exactly what I expected. Far from sensationally exposing the little-known 'dark underbelly' of modern India, it is exactly the same as the all the other books exposing the little-known dark underbelly of modern India - we read Q&A last year and this book is pretty much the same, even inferior. In fact,...
Published on 17 Nov 2008 by urban fox


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2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What's the big deal about this book, 22 July 2009
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This review is from: The White Tiger (Paperback)
I read this for my book club. Surprisingly I managed to read it pretty quickly considering it was just not my cup of tea. Most irritating read ever and hated the writing style. The only thing I found funny was the possibility that Balram might get what he deserves in the end. What goes around comes around. The lead character was totally selfish. I don't know what all the hype was about and I certainly don't think it deserved an award. There are so many books out there that are much, much better. This book certainly put me off India.
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2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars booker book by Adiga, 29 Jan 2009
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This review is from: The White Tiger (Hardcover)
This is a very entertaining absorbing book which reflects Indian life to someone who's not Indian....
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a cracking read, 31 Dec 2008
By 
E. Smith (U.K.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White Tiger (Hardcover)
I have just finished 'The White Tiger' by Aravind Adiga, winner of the man booker prize 2008.

It was a cracking read - pacy and chilling, and I fear rather close to reality for some people... certainly illustrates some of the - good and bad - sides of 'new India'and 'old India', poverty and opportunity (or lack of it)and the darker side of human nature.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Run-of-the-mill Bollywood style, 11 Dec 2008
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This review is from: The White Tiger (Hardcover)
The story is typical run-of-the-mill bollywood style. Decent character build-up and quite gripping. The psychological transformation of the protagonist is well written, but I can't help but imagine it in a Bollywood film context. The description is similar to how characters are dealt with in films, so was a bit disappointed with it.
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3 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars VERY POOR, 24 July 2009
By 
book end "alan" (COWDENBEATH, FIFE United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The White Tiger (Paperback)
I am at a loss to understand how this book has received the Man Booker |Prize and the plaudits that it has. With the hero or anithero of a book you want to be able to care about what happens to them. In this case, I could not have cared less. Having visited India, I anticipated that the writing would bring back some great memories of the country, people, the customs, quirks, smells and the atmosphere. This book did not and if I could have reviewed it with zero stars I would have. Very disappointed.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 6 Sep 2010
This review is from: The White Tiger (Paperback)
I bought this book after much hype about it and friends' recommendations. I wish I had ignored them all. This book is sorely disappointing as a read. The story is not that exciting and the way it is presented is also a little odd. The story of a taxi driver who becomes an entrepreneur should be interesting but actually it is more about his life as a taxi driver that makes up the bulk of the book. Many places/ things are described metaphorically within the book which gets to be a little annoying at times. The ending came suddenly but the book could not have ended sooner.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 25 Feb 2009
By 
Rupal Shah - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White Tiger (Hardcover)
I bought this book as a gift for my husband. He is not really into reading but I knew he would like this book. He fell in love with it and read it within no time!! He says that its a brilliant read and a must read. Would give it more than 5 stars if I could!!
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3 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Do not believe the hype, 24 July 2009
By 
T. Sayegh (Oslo, Norway) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White Tiger (Paperback)
While extremely easy to read, the style does not make for a greatly enjoyable read. The plot is ungripping and the storytelling full of clichés. I was expecting to be enlightened on the caste system but there is nothing there to redeem this little opus that will probably vanish in the midst of time. It's only feat will have been to win a prize.

Very disappointed!
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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Clawless tiger, 3 Jan 2010
This review is from: The White Tiger (Paperback)
As someone with a vivid interest in globalization and post-colonialism issues and a lover of great fiction, I eagerly grabbed this book, but alas.
As political pamphlet it's as tiresome as any other political pamphlet. As literature, it's not even trying.
Compared to a South African novel from recent years, Christopher Hope's "My Mother's Lovers", a book that managed to be excellent literature, at the same time making a strong political statement, deepening the reader's understanding of modern South Africa, this falls deplorably short.
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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A lighter-weight Booker, 3 Feb 2009
By 
DubaiReader "MaryAnne" (Rowlands Castle, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The White Tiger (Hardcover)
I came at this book from a slightly different angle to most readers, as, living in Dubai, I don't have a driver, but I do have an Indian maid. No,I don't know where her family live and I don't keep her under the thumb with threats to their safety! However, some of the other aspects of the book do ring true. Many of our taxi drivers are not unlike Balram Halwai and the groups of drivers whiling the time away waiting for their masters brought to mind the taxi drivers awaiting their next fare when custom is slow.
There is always an under current of concern as to the honesty of Indian staff, frequently left to mind children and animals while the adults work. While they appear honest, things do tend to 'disappear' from time to time and babies and animals cannot speak.
Whilst written in a light hearted manner, this book made me feel a little uncomfortable. Surely not all Indians are as conniving an dishonest as Halwai? Yet his master was one of the nicer ones but it didn't save his life.

As a Booker nomination, I found this a light relief. In recent years I have avoided Booker prize winners as they have been either too dense or weird. This was definitely a move in the right direction.

I would love to visit the great second-hand book market of Darya Ganj (P 215)

And of course - the best quote: P134
"This city is going to be like Dubai in five years, isn't it?"
"Five?" I said contemptuously. "In two years."
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