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The Accidental Apprentice

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As heard on BBC Woman's Hour

From the author of the book behind the blockbuster movie Slumdog Millionaire, a brilliant novel about life changing in an instant.

In life you never get what you deserve: you get what you negotiate…

What would you do if, out of the blue, a billionaire industrialist decided to make you the CEO of his company? No prior business experience necessary. There is only one catch: you need to pass seven tests from the 'textbook of life'.

This is the offer made to Sapna Sinha, an ordinary salesgirl in an electronics boutique in downtown Delhi, by Vinay Mohan Acharya, one of India's richest men.

Thus begins the most challenging journey of Sapna's life, one that will test her character, her courage and her capabilities. Along the way she encounters a host of memorable personalities, from a vain Bollywood superstar to a kleptomaniac Gandhian. At stake is a business empire worth ten billion dollars, and the future she has always dreamt of. But are the seven tests for real or is Acharya playing a deeper game, one driven by a perverse fantasy?

From the acclaimed author of Slumdog Millionaire, one of the biggest films of the decade, comes this compelling, suspenseful tale of the power of dreams, the lure of money and the universal need to know who we are.

Praise forThe Accidental Apprentice:

'It's easy to forget that before it was retitled for Hollywood, Slumdog Millionairewas a novel called Q&A,which makes its author, Vikas Swarup, probably the most successful Indian author you've never heard of…. Gripping stuff… Perhaps The Accidental Apprenticeis awaiting its Danny Boyle'The Times

Praise for Q&A/Slumdog Millionaire

'A colourful portrait of Indian society is painted with remarkable lightness and wit' Sunday Telegraph

'Absorbing and richly entertaining reading' The Times

Photo Credit:

Vikas Swarup is an Indian diplomat who has served in Turkey, the United States, Ethiopia, and Great Britain. Q & A, his first novel, was translated into eighteen languages and adapted into the Academy Award-winning film Slumdog Millionaire. Swarup currently works in the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi.