Book Review: The White Tiger

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The white tiger: a novel by Aravind Adiga. Free Press, 2008.

Aravind Adiga’s first novel was requested by several students, who said it was a story about an entrepreneur in India. It turns out that White Tiger is not about business. It is a ruthless portrait of contemporary India.

The main character begins life in poverty and deprivation in a village in northern India. He dreams of leaving his town and finds a job as a driver/servant for wealthy landowners who move to Delhi. Eventually, he commits a brutal murder to free himself from bondage and to obtain the capital to begin a business.

Behind the story of the Indian economic miracle, with glass office towers, luxury apartments and gigantic malls, is another story of those whom the economic miracle is leaving behind. This is the story of social injustice for the poor and uneducated, and about corruption and cruelty in all levels of society.

Some people find this book to be darkly humorous — this reviewer did not. Nevertheless, the novel is a fascinating read. White Tiger won the 2008 Man Booker prize.

© Reviewer: Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business. All rights reserved.

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