Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The White Tiger

-Aravind Adiga

Rating - 4/5

Its brilliant with thought provocation in every page The narration is in a simple language but has intensity. Aravind Adiga has successfully been able to represent the common Indian man who might be under-privileged but dreams. Although the title itself indicates the rarity of this type..hence "The White Tiger".
Yes...thats what makes Balram Halwai aka "Munna" the so called White Tiger. Born to a rickshaw-puller father and ill mother in a poverty-stricken joint family, Munna rises from the Darkness to become an entrepreneur in the competitive metropolitan of Bangalore. His simplicity hits you on the face like a wet towel because we often tend to fail in understanding the strife & struggles the impoverished withstand each day.
What made it a more interesting read was that I couldn't relate myself to even one characteristic of the protagonist, hence the book broadens your outlook. Adiga's observational skills to point out intricate details of everyday life are commendable and the description's are well-written. There are vivid descriptions of the stark contrast between the lives of the people living in the current two-Indias. An interesting insight about a prevailing thought process - "the Rooster coop" and how it has caged most of us in it.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Keep off the Grass

-Karan Bajaj

Rating - 3/5

Indian literature has transformed into this new urban style where writing is not just restricted to writers.  As the phrase goes “Everyone has a story to tell”, and they are indeed doing the same.
The book is funny and interesting enough that you can go out dating with it...but love maybe not. Captivating definitely because the writer has successfully been able to relate a Yale graduate-Wall street investment banker to any other average student from IIM or from any institute for that matter.  The title of the book “Keep off the Grass” is sprinkled like icing-sugar all over the story once the protagonist (Samrat Ratan) lands in India. There are various bites from the inside world of IIM (B) which overtly discloses the dirty picture of a cut-throat competition existing in a nation of over 1-billion population, the rat-race for the best GPAs, internships, placements (read packages), the mean corporate world where `happiness’ is defined as the upward projection of sales in the market even if you have to kill to be there. Then come the extracts of spiritualism and religious fervour prevalent here which has attracted many foreign visitors even before Zeenat Aman’s pot-smoking hippie friends in Dum Maro Dum to till date. The ABCD (American Born Confused Desi) Samrat gets fancied and as usual more grass is smoked. Samrat with his two friends Vinod, Veer-Chakra winning ex-Army officer who fought in Kargil (headstrong with his convictions like not working for MNCs to deceive his mother-land) and Sarkar, a smartass IIT graduate (laid-back on a bed of sarcasm wrapped in his illusive world blurred with smoke) struggles through his 2 years journey in IIM(B) in a quest to find what he really wants from life.  A million-dollar question that has befuddled many of us someday.