The debut novel The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga won the prestigious literary award ‘The Man Booker Prize’ in 2008. The Book’s also been adapted into a movie lately, starring Priyanka Chopra & Rajkumar Rao.
What would’ve made the novel won the distinguished title? Was it even worth it? Apart from these questions, there were other few questions too that exhorted me to pick this literary piece up.
Does only revealing the hard-boiled realities of a country like India render the Book The Man Booker Prize? Or is it making people stumble upon the uncomfortable ignored truths they have known for centuries by presenting them in a literary piece? Let’s get into what the Book presents for its readers-
SUMMARY OF THE BOOK THE WHITE TIGER:
The Novel ‘The White Tiger’ is an epistolary novel. The letter addresses the Chinese President who is soon to visit India to hear the success story of its Entrepreneurs.
The writer of the letter, Balram, recalls in the letter his challenging, thrilling, and blood-curling journey. A journey from a local village Boy to a successful Entrepreneur, A WHITE TIGER born once in a while. As a child, Balram isn’t only bereft of the basic necessities of life- proper schooling & guidance but also his identity, a name.
He resolves to not step in the footsteps of his fellow Village men & live an impoverished life forever. To this end, Balram pulls all the stops out in learning to drive and getting himself employed somewhere. His efforts pay him off and his fate gets him a kind-heartened son of a dishonest and cruel landlord.
A uniform of his own, a piece of cloth enough to elicit reverence in the people of his village, renders Balram content. There is absolute satisfaction in driving the composed Vikram Saheb & his madam to places. A kind-heartened owner, the driver of an ‘air-conditioned’ car is all he could ever wish for. What happens then which crushes Balram’s scruples and implores him to commit a horrendous action? And obliges him to the crime of A BRUTAL MURDER- is what the story takes to the reader.
WHAT TO EXPECT IN THE NOVEL?
While describing the two economically divided classes of the oppressed and the oppressor, another important social issue is also there. The exposed corruption and power-sickness of the politicians are visible throughout the story; the power of the rich to even buy the lives of the poor, with the latter’s helplessness to market themselves!
We see the pretend of the generosity by the potent & the forlorn hope of the perpetually hopeful poor to get their basic rights & acknowledgment.
It successfully uproots and stands bare the shrewd and self-centered affluent society. Also, what leaves a reader in awe is the eloquent writing style of Aravind Adiga. A reader finds himself flowing through the plot with ease, anticipating the journey of the protagonist. In the end, the reader cannot help but praise the writer’s ability to put forward such grave issues & still getting successful in bringing in the comedy with his mordant wit.
MY FINAL THOUGHTS:
I recommend ‘The White Tiger’ to anyone who is in seek of a highly compelling masterpiece. It unveils & ridiculously exposes the dark truths hidden behind the walls of Power and Money. It alleviates the reader from merely conjecturing on the causes of darkness in the dark areas of the country to actually confirming their hidden speculation.
To be sure, a commendable job on the writer’s part! With each paragraph being imbibed, the writer’s objective to stir several emotions in readers gets successful.
Going through the plot, sentiments such as incredulity, anger, grief are all perceived by the readers. There are also many moments for a chuckle. Eventually, the contemplation on the seriousness of the matters by the reader is also achieved.