It's strange how you can first hear about books. About 18 months ago whilst Mr C and I were still house hunting we went to view on particular house where the owners had a very minimalist approach. Downstairs everything was white, off white or clear (glass or plastic). Upstairs it was very similar. The one thing that both of us remember though is that in the bedroom there was a white wooden framed bed, with white cotton bed lined, a white bedside cabinet and on it was a copy of The White Tiger (with a previous cover that was, you guessed it, mainly white!)
Things like that can really stick in your mind and whenever I have seen this book anywhere since I still think about that house. I have to admit thought that that was all I knew about this particular book until I unwrapped a copy from my Brother in Law at Christmas. He seemed surprised when I said I'd heard about it, and even more surprised when I heard about where I'd originally seen it!
Winner or the Man Booker Prize in 2008, the White Tiger is written as a letter (in a series of instalments) from Balram Halwai (the White Tiger) to the Premier of China. Halwai has heard that the Premier is to visit his city of Bangalore and he has taken it upon himself to tell him all about the real India before he begins his journey. He goes on to tell about his own life story and how he has made it from schoolboy to entrepreneur and the steps he has had to take on the way.
It's a slightly strange book in that some of what you read I found that I was slightly shocked by (especially the language which I felt was unnecessary at times), yet I couldn't help but keep turning the pages. At the same time, none of what I was reading really surprised me either. The sign of truth perhaps? Certainly the reader is given a huge insight into how author Aravind Adiga pictures the real India. I normally approach prize winning books with a degree of scepticism, but in this case I actually really enjoyed it.