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Q and A

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  26,128 Ratings  ·  2,554 Reviews
Vikas Swarup's spectacular debut novel opens in a jail cell in Mumbai, India, where Ram Mohammad Thomas is being held after correctly answering all twelve questions on India's biggest quiz show, "Who Will Win a Billion?" It is hard to believe that a poor orphan who has never read a newspaper or gone to school could win such a contest. But through a series of exhilarating t ...more
Published (first published 2005)
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Smit Zaveri The book is definitely more engaging and true when compared to the anglicized and over-rated movie. The characters are well fleshed out and it is very…moreThe book is definitely more engaging and true when compared to the anglicized and over-rated movie. The characters are well fleshed out and it is very well written. (less)
Abby James I really have to admire the way the screen writer created a whole new story and only loosely based it on the book (just the premise and a few other…moreI really have to admire the way the screen writer created a whole new story and only loosely based it on the book (just the premise and a few other things). It's rare that an interpretation is so well thought out. The book is simple and interesting on its own. The twist at the end is delicious and it was a compelling read. The movie on the other hand had so many layers. It was if it was a completely different novel in itself. Both can be appreciated. :)(less)
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Community Reviews

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I should mention that this 1-star review is not at all related to my opinion of the movie "Slumdog Millionaire" which I liked much better than the book. I am glad that the movie-makers smartly retained the only decent thing about this novel that is the game show plot device and tossed almost all of the rest into the trash because that's where this novel truly belongs. This book badly needs some editing or even better, a different author. I read in some review that "Slumdog Millionaire" feels lik
Tea Jovanović
MUST READ! MUST READ! One of the books I've discovered for Serbia, and I'm very proud of doing it much before the movie is made or won the Oscar... This book has that "something" that makes you instantly fell in love with it from first sentence... And you don't forget it ages later... It took quite a time to catch readers' attention in Serbia... Although this book had many editions in Serbia, his publisher completely ignored his second novel, pitty... :(
Jan 18, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I was completely unenchanted with the movie Slumdog Millionaire; the story, I felt, was predictable with characters that were totally uninteresting or completely unlikable. However, much as I was unimpressed with the movie, I couldn't shake the feeling that there was the kernel of a very interesting story there, and that maybe, just maybe, I might have a good experience with the book.

I am pleased to report that I was correct - the book [u:]Q&A[/u:] is far superior to the film. A few things t
Ahmad Sharabiani
Q & A = Slumdog millionaire, Vikas Swarup
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: بیست و ششم نوامبر سال 2010 میلادی
عنوان: میلیونر زاغه نشین؛ نویسنده: ویکاس سواروپ؛ مترجم: مهدی غبرایی؛ مصطفی اسلامیه؛ تهران، کتابسرای نیک؛ 1388؛ در 352 ص؛ شابک: 9789642953325؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان هندی به زبان انگلیسی قرن 21 م
شرح ماجراهای رام محمد توماس، پسر بچه ای كه برای زندگی و زنده ماندن تلاش میكند. داستان فیلم درباره ی پسر هجده ساله ی یتیم فقیری ساکن بمبئی به نام: جمال ملک است، که در مسابقه ی: «چه کسی میخواهد میلیونر شود؟
Jan 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What's the saying? "You are the sum total of your life's experiences"? This is the book that presents a very young man who has already racked up quite the collection of life experiences, just by experiencing each day of his existence. Luckily and happily, he can put this extraordinary existence to use and win himself a lot of money!

But wait! Here comes yet another unsavory event: he is arrested. For cheating. Nobody can believe that "someone like him" could have known all those answers.

They don'
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Το Slumdog Millionaire μου άρεσε πολύ. Τρία χαρακτηριστικά του είναι φτιαγμένα έτσι που έκαναν αυτό το βιβλίο ιδανικό για εμένα.
Το θέμα του. Η ιστορία που διηγείται ο ήρωας θα μπορούσε να χαρακτηριστεί σκληρή. Από τις πρώτες σελίδες του βιβλίου, οι εικόνες που περιγράφονται δεν είναι πάντα βόλτα σε λούνα παρκ. Ο Swarup, στο έργο σχολιάζει κοινωνικά φαινόμενα όπως η διαφθορά, η εκμετάλλευση, ο ρατσισμός, κ ακόμα ποιο αποτρόπαια, όπως η κακοποίηση, η παιδεραστία, η πορνεία και η βία σε πολλές τις
Dec 30, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was torn about how to rate this book. On one hand, I just loved the unusual plot, and could have easily given it 5 stars. On the other hand, wow, I don't remember the last time I read anything so blatantly homophobic. Three different male characters, two of whom are clearly identified as "gay", were predatory pedophiles who abused young boys. A third man was also a pedophile who abused young boys, but at least the author never claimed he was gay. I didn't feel any of these characterizations we ...more
I have rarely been as ambivalent about a book as I was about Q&A. I realized about half-way through that I could put it down, never pick it up again, and not feel any remorse at all. Yet it was just engaging enough to continue reading, and I finished it. I was moderately intrigued throughout, but nothing in it lit a passion in me at all.

Basically, I'm glad I checked it out of the library.
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really liked this book, surprisingly it was as good as the movie. So, great read :)
Dec 04, 2016 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
A book that was suggested to me by many of my friends.

I'm sure it would be as fantastic as the movie.

Apr 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
My review is based on the audiobook read by Christopher Simpson, who is absolutely outstanding given his vast array of accents and vocal gymnastics. His readings adds an ingredient that would have been sorely missed without him. Having just visited India, I found I was pulled right into the vivid storyline.

I loved the movie but I found the stories in the book far more appealing. It’s originally entitled "Q&A" which is actually the story’s format. I haven’t been teary-eyed over many stories,
Feb 23, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, indian-lit, 2000s
Wow. Simon Beaufoy really deserved that Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar. I didn’t think that Slumdog Millionaire was the Best Movie EVAR! as some people seem to, but the book is just awful. Scattered and poorly written, with a narrative that relies on more farfetched coincidences than a cracked-out Dickens novel, Q&A also manages to make its protagonist completely unsympathetic, and its romance entirely unromantic. Oh, and the whole thing—the first few chapters especially—is cringingly homopho ...more
This is one of those rare occasions when I am going to have to say that I like the movie much more than the book. For one, the movie has the absolutely adorable Dev Patel. For two, I think that it was a fantastic decision on the part of Danny Boyle et. al. to edit out the homophobic stereotyping that permeates the beginning of this book.

I’ve only read seventy five pages, so maybe it gets better. I don’t know. This sort of thing tends to bother me quite a bit and I just can’t get past it.

Let’s re
I saw the movie made from this when it was on at the cinema - Slumdog Millionaire - and I thought it was a clever premise, although overly graphic in some respects. The book is just as clever, although different to the movie, because of course movies always change things. The book is less descriptive of disturbing scenes than the movie was graphic.

It was a very interesting read - I liked reading about the different places that Ram Mohammad Thomas lived and worked, and seeing how chance encounter
Aug 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
انا ماشفتش الفيلم -مش بشوف أفلام اصلا- بس مظنش اني محتاجة اشوفه، الكتاب رائع بما يكفي.
حاجة تاني حبيتها جدا انه بيشرح كتير جدا عن الهند، ومعلوماته بتتكلم علي كل حاجة من السنيما هناك لحد الأكلات المختلفة.
بصراحة بيبهرني جدا الكاتب اللي مش بس بيكتب قصة حلوة لا كمان بيحط فيها معلومات كتير فبيخليني اتسلي واستفيد في نفس الوقت
Mar 30, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ev by: Mom
Shelves: 2009, mom
Good idea for a story. Poor, uneducated orphan kid wins a billion rupees (About $20 million USD) on a game show.

Other than that it was somewhat of a struggle to get through this book. I think it was all the Indian names. I know this book is written by an Indian and was translated into English but I had a hard time getting into it when every sentance had some Indian word I didn't know what it meant and there were no other explaining to help figure it out. Maybe if I spoke that language it wouldn
Rosie Nguyễn
May 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rất lôi cuốn, rất giật gân, rất dữ dội. Tình tiết nhanh và hấp dẫn. Nhiều thông tin thú vị về lịch sử, xã hội Ấn Độ. Và trên hết là cách cho ra đời quyển sách này của tác giả. Một người viết tận tâm.
Aliaa Mohamed
Aug 22, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
هندي هندي يعني :D
Whoa. I must start by saying that I've surprised myself by reading the last 170 odd pages in just over a couple of hours.

I suppose the premise of 'Q&A' is known to everyone who hasn't been living under a rock, having been adapted into the Oscar-winning motion picture 'Slumdog Millionaire' in 2008. But that's pretty much where the resemblance ends, because the film takes very little inspiration from the events that take place in the book, which is not necessarily a bad thing.

I say this becaus
Mar 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 15+
At first glance, “Slumdog Millionaire”, written by Vikas Swarup, would appear to be a story about someone that wins a bunch of cash in the Indian Slum but, it is much more than that. “Slumdog Millionaire” is written in the perspective of a young boy named, Ram Mohammad Thomas. Suspected of cheating on the game show Who wants to be a Billionaire, He is tortured until a mysterious lawyer comes to his aid. Suspicious of her, Ram flips and coin and from the toss, he decides to open up and tell his s ...more
Feb 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Q & A is the book that inspired the film Slumdog Millionaire. However, the two bear little to no resemblance to each other, save for the basic premise: an orphan from the slums of India goes on a game show and wins the top prize, but the show's producers think he must have cheated, so the kid tells stories from his life that relay how he knew the answers to the questions. Aside from this bare bones outline, the book and movie are really two entirely different stories made up of almost entire ...more
Mona M. Kayed
Feb 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

تصوير محترف لحياة المتشردين .. اليتم و الطرد و العذاب و الجوع و المعاناة كلها رسمت خطوط حياة "رام محمد توماس" الشاب الهندي المشرد الذي يملك إيماناً يمكنه من اجتياز جميع تلك المصاعب ، هنا تجدر الإشارة أننا حين نتحدث عن إيمان توماس فإنما نتحدث عن إيمانه بنفسه و قدرته على بلوغ طموحاته ، لإنه ببساطة لا يؤمن بدين بعينه ، اسمه خليط من الهندوسية و الإسلام و المسيحية ، هذا الاسم أعطي له لأنهم ببساطة لم يعلموا لأية ديانة يتبع أهله ، و كرهوا الخوض في المسائل الطائفية المنتشرة في الهند في ذلك الوقت !

Jun 09, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club, movies
I read this book for a book club meeting last month.
I had watched the movie a few years ago and I remember enjoying the story.
This is told in sections of Thomas' life. He is explaining how a boy from the slums could answer all the questions to win a billion on a game show. My attention was captured while I tried to guess what the next question was going to be on the game show based on the story that Thomas told. I was usually way off.

With how crazy my life has been the last few weeks the short
Dr Osama
Nov 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
رواية سؤال وجواب للمؤلف والدبلوماسي الهندي فيكاس سواراب تحكي قصة فتى مجهول الوالدين يدعى رام محمد توماس - وذلك يرمز لانتمائه للأديان الثلاث الهندوسية والإسلام والمسيحية - يشارك في مسابقة من سيربح البليون وينجح في الإجابة عن جميع الأسئلة بنجاح رغم أنه ليس متعلم ولا مثقف. والسر في قدرته على كسب الجائزة أن كل سؤال تتعلق إجابته بموقف مر عليه في حياته البائسة. الرواية سهلة وسلسة وممتعة وتترابط كل أحداثها بذكاء وتشويق. وقد تفنن الكاتب في تصوير حياة البؤس والشقاء في مساكن الفقراء بما فيها من جريمة وانح ...more
Chăm Lên
Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lâu rồi mới đọc lại một cuốn sách mang hơi hướng Ấn Độ, hồi nhỏ có xem sơ sơ phim này mà giờ đọc sách mới thấy hết ý nghĩa và độ hay của nó. Cuốn hút và ẩn chứa nhiều bất ngờ. Mình vui vì cậu bé Thomas đã được hưởng hạnh phúc vì cậu ấy xứng đáng có được nó.
The Flooze
Slumdog Millionaire (Q&A) is not a masterpiece of prose. But it is a startling and thought-provoking story, rife with social commentary.

The prologue is engaging, swiftly establishing the ludicrousness of a waiter from the slums winning a quiz show. It deftly highlights the resignation the residents of Dharavi feel towards their lot in life: the inevitability of the police taking you away; the abuses doled out by corrupt officers; the belief that you summon only misfortune if you challenge th
Nov 18, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I saw the film a few years ago together with my mother, and I was amazed by the story – almost as much as I was amazed by Dev Patel and how wonderful he is. So, when I learned it was based on a book; it didn't take me long to go to the library in an attempt to find it. However, even though the library claimed to have it, it was nowhere to be found. Until the other day when I found it on a shelf way off where it's supposed to be. Talk about faith.

Ram Mohammad Thomas has just been arrested. Why? F
سوسن الجبري

رواية ممتعه جدا وفيها تصوير لحياة الفقراء والمشردين بشكل فعلا واقعي ومحزن :(
الرواية رائعه لكن للاسف فيها بعض الاحداث الي ما اقدر افسرها غير بأنها " فلم هندي " .. مثلا في كون المحامية هي غوديا وكون مقدم البرنامج هو نفسه الشخص الي عذب الممثلة و بائعه الهوى الي يعرفها توماس .. يعني وش هالصدفة !
بس غير هذا الرواية فعلا ممتعه و انصح بقرائتها في حالة الوصول لحالة الملل من القراءة لانها بترجع لك الحماسة للقراءة من جديد ..
Bedoor Khalaf
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An enjoyable book written well and organized beautifully. Having each chapter discuss a part of Ram's life and connecting it to the game show questions make it easy to follow and brings us back from the past to witnesses of the game show. Although the book contains many hardships, it makes you wonder what knowledge can be acquired through living itself along with the wisdom of survival.
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Vikas Swarup was born in Allahabad (India) in a family of lawyers.

After his schooling, Vikas attended Allahabad University and studied History, Psychology and Philosophy. He also made his mark as a champion debater, winning National level competitions. After graduating with distinction, he joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1986, motivated by an interest in international relations and a desire t
More about Vikas Swarup...

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“Love doesn't happen in an instant. It creeps up on you and then it turns your life upside down. It colors your waking moments, and fills your dreams. You begin to walk on air and see life in brilliant new shades. But it also brings with it a sweet agony, a delicious torture.” 140 likes
“And for the first time in my life, I saw something new reflected in the eyes that saw me. Respect. It taught me a very valuable lesson. That dreams have power only over your own mind. But with money you can have power over the minds of others” 34 likes
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