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The Accidental Apprentice

3.41  ·  Rating details ·  3,262 ratings  ·  457 reviews
From the author of the book behind the blockbuster movie Slumdog Millionaire, a brilliant novel about life changing in an instant.

Life pivots on a few key moments. This is one of them.

Sapna Sinha works in an electronics store in downtown Delhi. She hates her job, but she is ambitious and determined to succeed, and she knows without the money she brings in, her family won'
Paperback, 436 pages
Published January 31st 2013 by Simon & Schuster (first published January 1st 2007)
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Average rating 3.41  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,262 ratings  ·  457 reviews

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Feb 25, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: indian-authors, 2013
Highly disappointing, much like a badly made Bollywood movie. Way too many coincidences and randomness and even the tagline on the book cover makes no sense. "What would you do if your life changed in an instant" or something like that. But the point is, the main character's life doesn't change in an instant. It does over a painstaking 6 months she insists on dragging us through if we choose to read the book.

There's a lot happening, the writing is too simple (and I never thought I would ever sa
Himanshu Modi
May 11, 2013 rated it did not like it
Without mincing words, this is the stupidest, most hare-brained story I have ever read. I feel like have to justify myself in using search harsh words... but having just finished the book, I am not in a pleasant mood. See, there are books that I plainly don't like. If these are popular books, I get why people who enjoy these books might do so... And when I say "I get", I do not mean it in a condescending kind of a way. It's just a plain and simple understanding that people's tastes can be differ ...more
Aman Sharma
Jan 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
''The Accidental Apprentice'' by Vikas Swarup was one the books I was eagerly waiting for, in the year 2013. Well to be honest, I had never ever read a book of around 450 pages in matter of 7 hours...

As his previous books, ''The Slumdog Millionaire'' & ''6 Suspects'' Vikas has managed to attract the curiosity of a reader towards this book. The story-line is very strong and gripping which persuaded me to pick the book without giving a second thought. It is a story of a girl Sapna Sinha, who is gi
Rahul Dowlath
May 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
I became a fan of Vikas Swarup after reading Q&A (in the midst of the Slumdog Millionaire hype). Wanting more, I discovered Six Suspects, becoming ensnared by his fast-paced and innovative storytelling technique.

So I was excited to find out that he had a new book out. The Accidental Apprentice comes across almost as seven distinct short stories tied together by Sapna Sinha's life-arc, and initially I put this entire structure down to a repetitive storytelling style, almost going as far as accept
Oct 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5 Stars for The Accidental Apprentice (audiobook) by Vikas Swarup read by Sneha Mathan. This is a really creative story. The characters are great and I found the look into Indian culture fascinating. The narration was great too.
Nicola Marsh
Apr 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2013
I haven't read Slumdog Millionaire or seen the film version but I'll certainly be doing both now.

Thoroughly enjoyed The Accidental Apprentice.

Vikas Swarup has an easygoing writing voice that is fun to read.

Loved the strong heroine Sapna and the choices she made.

And I definitely didn't see the MAJOR TWIST at the end coming.

Good read.
May 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
From BBC Radio 4 Extra:
Sales assistant Sapna Sinha is offered a chance to change her life. All she has to do is pass seven tests. From the bestselling novel The Accidental Apprentice.
May 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
"It's a basic rule of human nature that the promise of unexpected wealth short-circuits both intelligence and common sense."

As with Vikas Swarup's hugely successful debut novel Q&A, which was subsequently made into the hit movie Slumdog Millionaire, The Accidental Apprentice returns to the theme of: What would happen to your life if you were suddenly offered the chance of a lifetime.

Sapna Sinha is a twenty-three year old shop assistant in an electronics store, a dutiful daughter and main bread-
Bhuwan Chand
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
I had read Q&A, the first book of Vikas Swarup, during a train journey from Bombay to Delhi in 2006, me and my wife were returning from a memorable trip to Goa & Bombay. The book was bought and gifted to me by my dear friend GRV at one crossword shop in Bombay during the trip.

I loved that book and was pleasantly surprised when I came to know that a Hollywood director is making a movie based on the book.

Now this 'The Accidental Apprentice' seems to be written solely with the aim of turning it i
Anthony Quinones
Nov 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Murder, love, and greed: I was handed these three things on a golden platter in The Accidental Apprentice by Vikas Swarup. This novel took me places I have never dreamed of, in ways that I couldn’t possibly have conceived before reading this amazing book. This is honestly one of the best books I have ever read, in the context of character development and twist and turns.
Imagine a world where everything is stacked against you, because of one choice you made so long ago. That choice unleashing the
Colin Andrews
Jun 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I picked up this book wanting to read something by the author on whose novel the Slumdog Millionaire was based. I was not disappointed, as I found it very difficult to put down once I'd started reading.

Although the basic concept of a billionaire businessman selecting a sales girl to be the C.E.O. of his business empire is pretty far fetched, the author has a compelling sense of narrative that makes even the bizarre believable. The description of locations and portrayal of the different levels of
Sep 29, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: indian-authors
After the unexpected and absolutely original storyline of Q&A, expectations were high for Vikas Swaroop's second book.

While I don't distinctly remember the writing style in Q&A (I read it over 5 years ago) I do remember the feeling of "wow" at the end of the book - which is quite a bit missing in this one.
The story is fast paced and keeps you hooked though - only because you want to know what lies in store for Sapna, the main protagonist. Though way too much is happening to her to find it real
Milly Paris
Apr 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
I am very torn about this book. I really enjoyed the premise and felt pretty gripped by the story. It was also a pretty easy/quick read for an adult novel. It felt eye opening to how different Indian culture is to the Western world. I also loved the characters: Sapna, Vinay Mohan and Karan mainly. Sapna was such a wonderful, strong female character, full of a rage she couldn't display, and I was so gripped by the story because I cared about her. I just thought it was really great and I had no id ...more
Katherine Roberts
Aug 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
The author of this book wrote the novel that became the film Slumdog Millionaire (which I loved) so I knew I'd enjoy this. Here, plucky heroine Sapna is chosen as a millionaire's apprentice - if she passes seven tests she will become CEO of his company. She doesn't really desire power, but she can certainly use the money to help her family. As the tests continue, however, Sapna discovers they are putting both her and her family in danger - but when she is framed for murder, there is no way out e ...more
Jan 07, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-library
Interesting premise, with plot points as convoluted as a Bollywood drama. I didn't buy the main character's martyr-like behaviour and some of the supporting characters' roles are one-dimensional and only serve to explain away convenient coincidences in the narrative. Felt like too many unlikely situations coming together and by the time the ultimate villain reveal happened in a sea of red herrings, I'd already stopped caring.
Jun 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! The first chapter may seem boring but hang in there, the story keeps getting better! The last few chapters becomes very dramatic rapidly, makes you not want to sleep till you know what's happening in the story! This is one of those books where you scan the previous chapters again after reading the entire book to see the link you figured out at the end of the story.

Some may find the situations are too cliche but to cover political corruption happening in the country, that sort of a sto
Feb 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
Extremely disappointing book. I had a hard time reconciling with the fact that this was the same guy who wrote Q&A. The writing is amateurish and so simple that it makes Chetan Bhagat's writing seem like Salman Rushdie. I had high expectations from the story but it was too much of a let down. It looked as if he suddenly saw a few episodes of Satyamev Jayate and decided to write a children's book on it.
Jun 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. Sapna takes you into her life and on a journey. She meets her mentor and is challenged by 7 tests, all revolving around some form of exploitation or corruption encountered by not only people in Indian but people in the wider world. We meet hero's who are fighting for the rights of the underprivileged or dis-empowered, Sapna grows in her knowledge and strength. I'd like to see this book in film!
Joanie Driemeyer
Jul 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a page turner and an easy read. If you liked Q&A (slumdog millionaire) you'll like this one. It was quite similar, in that each chapter reads like a story in itself, in which the main character overcomes some hurdle & advances towards the main outcome. In this case, the outcome is a dream job which Sapna will earn if she passes seven tests. There were a couple of twists at the end. Quite satisfying. ...more
Sep 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Pretty thrilling stuff and has all the ingredients "for" a thrilling bolly/hollywood blockbuster a la Slumdog millionaire (pun intended)!
Still, I have to say that there is something uniquely Indian about this book. This book highlights the age-old Indian tradition of striving for uprightness, a central theme in all religions emanating out of the sub-continent.
A great read!
Jul 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
The is a very quick, entertaining, fun read, written by the same fellow that wrote Q&A/Slumdog Millionaire. The arc of the story is patently unbelievable but an enjoyable read nonetheless. A perfect summer read. ...more
Bikram Sherawat
Jan 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Finished the book in 5 hours flat, but by the end i felt the hangover of Q&A looms large over the author...too dramatic and not close to real life as the author tries to portray.... ...more
Jul 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Reminiscent of Q&A, can't wait for the film... ...more
Dec 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
The ending is a bit preachy, but I loved this story.
Jan 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
One of the books I completed over a weekend! Just couldn't put it down despite have a two year old 's constant nagging!!
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
A ready script for a bollywood movie. Loved it. Unexpected ending.
The Accidental Apprentice, a story set in the bustling town of Delhi about a simple girl, Sapna Sinha who has to pass the seven tests set by a successful businessman Vinay Acharya looking for someone who can be the CEO of his ever expanding multi-million business.
And that is where it all starts.

I liked the plot of the story,well that is why I bought the book in the first place.But, to actually say that is where all the excitement ends too. Everything that happens in her Life is too co-incidental
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: review
If you've read Q&A (or seen its more famous screen adaptation) and Six Suspects, you'd recognise the narrative style in this as well - a series of sub plots driven by a connecting thread. In this case, an eccentric businessman sets a series of 7 tests for an initially reluctant young woman in order to prove herself capable of being the CEO of his conglomerate.
An ordinary person and her responses to circumstances that one would find familiar if one lived in India, that's pretty much what the tal
Moushine Zahr
This is the second novel I've read from the author Vikas Swarup. The first novel read was Meurtre dans un jardin indien. No, I didn't read his first hit novel on which the movie "Slumdog Millionaire" was based nor I haven't seen the movie. It seems that the author writes novels to be made for movies instead of literature. This novel, like his first hit novel, also has a get filftthy rich quickly for the leading character; maybe this is a new genre.

Although I rated 3 stars this novel just like t
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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

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