On Sale: October 14, 2008
Paperback / e-Book (reprint)
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Introducing a major literary talent, The White Tiger offers
a story of coruscating wit, blistering suspense, and
questionable morality, told by the most volatile,
captivating, and utterly inimitable narrator that this
millennium has yet seen.
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 the dark heart of India, Balram gets a break when
he is hired as a driver for his village's wealthiest man,
two house Pomeranians (Puddles and Cuddles), and the rich
man's (very unlucky) son. From behind the wheel of their
Honda City car, Balram's new world is a revelation. While
his peers flip through the pages of Murder Weekly ("Love --
Rape -- Revenge!"), barter for girls, drink liquor
(Thunderbolt), and perpetuate the Great Rooster Coop of
Indian society, Balram watches his employers bribe foreign
ministers for tax breaks, barter for girls, drink liquor
(single-malt whiskey), and play their own role in the
Rooster Coop. Balram learns how to siphon gas, deal with
corrupt mechanics, and refill and resell Johnnie Walker
Black Label bottles (all but one). He also finds a way out
of the Coop that no one else inside it can perceive.
Balram's eyes penetrate India as few outsiders can: the
cockroaches and the call centers; the prostitutes and the
worshippers; the ancient and Internet cultures; the water
buffalo and, trapped in so many kinds of cages that escape
is (almost) impossible, the white tiger. And with a
charisma as undeniable as it is unexpected, Balram teaches
us that religion doesn't create virtue, 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.
Sold in sixteen countries around the world, The White Tiger
recalls The Death of Vishnu and Bangkok 8 in ambition,
scope, and narrative genius, with a mischief and
personality all its own. Amoral, irreverent, deeply
endearing, and utterly contemporary, this novel is an
international publishing sensation -- and a startling,
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