Ram Mohammad Thomas has been arrested. Because how can a poor orphan who has never read a newspaper or gone to school correctly answer all twelve questions on the television game show Who Will Win a Billion? – unless he has cheated.
As the stories unfold, Ram explains to his lawyer how he knew the answer to each question by telling a chapter of this amazing life – from the day he was salvaged from a dustbin to his meeting with a security-crazed Australian army colonel while performing as an overly creative tour guide at the Taj Mahal. Stunning a television audience of millions, Ram draws on a store of street wisdom and accidental encounters that provides him with the essential keys not only to the quiz show but also to life itself.
In a beguiling blend of high comedy and poignancy, Vikas Swarup has created a kaleidoscope vision of the struggle of good against evil, and what happens when one boy has no other choice in life but to survive.