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The City Of Invention

The book reviews of UK children's author, Brian Keaney

Entertaining Romp Through Modern India

The White Tiger - Aravind Adiga

The words "Booker prize winner" and "enjoyable" are not often found side by side in the same sentence but The White Tiger is an exception. It's a highly entertaining and entirely irreverent romp through the complex network of caste, family, class, religion, crime, politics and business that makes up modern India; and it is all the more impressive when you realise that it's Adiga's first novel..

The voice of the central character, Balram - entrepreneur and self-confessed murderer - is distinctive and engaging from the first page. As he rises through the layers of this rapidly changing society, making his way out of the great Darkness that is rural India into the Light of the modern techno-savvy metropolis, his struggle mirrors the fate of the whole nation forced to reinvent itself for the twenty-first century.

Funny and vivid with a sharp eye for human failings, The White Tiger is an extraordinarily assured debut.