21st Century Mumbai is a city of new money and soaring real estate, and property kingpin Dharmen Shah has grand plans for its future.
His offer to buy and tear down a weathered tower block, making way for luxury apartments, will make each of its residents rich - if all agree to sell.
But not everyone wants to leave; many of the residents have lived there for a lifetime, many of them are no longer young.
As tensions rise among the once civil neighbours, one by one those who oppose the offer give way to the majority, until only one man stands in Shah's way: Masterji, a retired schoolteacher, once the most respected man in the building.
Shah is a dangerous man to refuse, but as the demolition deadline looms, Masterji's neighbours - friends who have become enemies, acquaintances turned co-conspirators - may stop at nothing to score their payday...
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 432 pages, map
- Publisher: Atlantic Books
- Publication Date: 01/02/2012
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9781848875180
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.
Review by teunduynstee
The White Tiger mostly enchanted me because it introduced me to the Indian reality I knew nothing about. Great story, exotic background. In Between the Assassinations, it was mostly the picture of Indian contemporenean society that made an interesting read. Now in this work, the setting in Mumbai is more or less unrelated to the story. The book is also a beautiful portrait of the city, but the actual narrative and characters could have been told anywhere in the world: it is about greed (or the pursuit of happiness if you wish) and human relations. It is about how charming and friendly people can be driven to do heinous things, not because they turn bad, but because they feel they must, because of obligations, because of cowardice, in the end: because they are only human. What I liked a lot: how there are no bad guys in this story. The many perspectives the author takes. Less: a bit too long. 100 pages less should be possible without taking out the core.
Review by celerydog
Enjoyable Indian fiction. Wonderful characterisation, and great development of the theme of how greed corrupts. Not pacy enough for older teen audience, but worth stocking as part of a C21 Indian authors' collection.