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onceacurmudgeon

To all the pages I've read before

Currently reading

The Wisdom of No Escape: And the Path of Loving-Kindness
Pema Chödrön
River of Smoke: A Novel
Amitav Ghosh
Alif the Unseen
G. Willow Wilson
Half of a Yellow Sun
Taoist Qigong for Health and Vitality: A Complete Program of Movement, Meditation, and Healing Sounds
Sea of Poppies
Amitav Ghosh
AyurVeda: The Science of Self-Healing
Medicine Buddha Teachings
Tibetan Book of Living and Dying: The Spiritual Classic and International Bestseller
The Fault in Our Stars
John Green

The White Tiger: A Novel

The White Tiger - Aravind Adiga There is a lot to like about this book. There is a lot to dislike too. Far more to dislike, really.I distinctly did not enjoy the style of Adiga choose to write this in. It kept me out of the story, knowing it was in the form of letters that did not seem real. I kept questioning their validity, and with it the likelihood of the story that was told. It almost felt like it was fan fiction for something that really has no other fans. I always knew I was reading an account and was never able to fall into the fiction like all great fiction allows. I also have read The Invisible Man, which this is a direct descendant of. And well, this actually hinders the story. I can not think of a writer who would fare well with constant comparisons to Ellison's masterpiece. That said, this works incredibly well discussing the awful conditions the poor exist under in India. India is a country of such wealth and abundance, but so few share its rewards. And Adiga really presents this well. He is able to his protagonist, Balram, quite well and very effectively to show how crushing poverty is on the majority of Indians. This is the overwhelming redeeming quality of this book. He spares no idols as he slashes and burns his way through out the systems that stymie anything resembling economic equality. He also flirts about critiquing the innate sexism on the subcontinent, but really does so in passing.My general take is that this book feels it is more clever than it really is. And while India can use any sense of soul searching as it flees into modernity, this cynical take is just that: too cynical. Too cynical for those in power and those who need to hear it most to hear the message. One does not fault Ghandi while trying to effect change and Adiga does this a few times.And while parts of this I found brilliantly written, they were far too far apart and far too brief.