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One Night at the Call Center: A Novel Paperback – May 1, 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
I enjoyed the story and the writing style, although I thought the "phone call from God" plot twist toward the end was rendered with all the subtlety of a self-help book (I'm surprised God didn't number the "valuable life lessons" for our convenience).
Forgiving that, my main gripe with this book is that neither the characters nor the author seemed to quite grasp the aforementioned "valuable life lessons".
The reason I say this is that in the story, Americans are portrayed individually (as callers into the call center) as fearful, lazy, stupid, warmongers who unfairly enjoy a better lifestyle than Indians - and collectively (in the form of corporations) as the personification of evil, unfairness and oppression. And so, the characters' economic problems are blamed on the selfish, stupid Americans who oppress them. Fair enough - every story needs a bad guy.
But yet, even after God shows up on the scene and dispenses the aforementioned "valuable life lessons" (take responsibility for your own lives, stop blaming others, stop making excuses) Americans (and the boss, as a stand-in for the Americans) are still the scapegoat, and the characters use their newfound self-confidence and perspective on life to exact REVENGE!!!Read more ›
I am an Indian who has lived in the US for 13 years and recently came back to India. I have seen people abusing their own people here...especially the maids and other low paid workers. I don't think Mr.Bhagat has any clue as to what he was talking about racial abuse. Indians are the world's biggest discriminators and we should clean up our own backyard before mud slinging somebody else's.
Some parts of the book delivered some good humorous comments. To me, the form of narrative was similar to his first book Five Point Someone. I think Mr.Bhagat should stick to what he has experienced first hand and make stories of that.
Good luck and hope for a better performance in your next book.
I recently spent 5 months in India in Bangalore and, admittedly, anti-white sentiment is widespread. I found people were warned off socializing with me as "white girls" had a reputation as promiscuous and immoral. So, in a way, the book is an accurate account of the people it is trying to portray. The question is whether or not they should be proud of that.
I'm not American and I'm not a big fan of a lot of US foreign policy but a book containing so many sweeping anti-American statements laid out as fact made me incredibly uncomfortable. It is disappointing that so few people seem to feel the same way.
The author tackles some bigger issues such as how the West treats poor countries like India and how their youth has sold out their country to take on the material items of the west. This book argues the point of how well educated hard working people in one country are worse off than the lazy stupid people in another simply because of where they were born. Chetan Bhagat does write this sort of stuff well without preaching to the reader, as he points out through the a well flowing storyline that these characters are all in the predicaments they are in because of themselves as well not just where they were born.
A few unrealistic occurrences in the plot and I doubt Vroom's solution for the call centre will work. The only major downside is obviously Chetan is a religious man and a passionate one at that. The ending and a middle chapter of the book have unrealistic situations and author uses this book as an opportunity to preach to the reader about his beliefs.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As an American reader, I love the different perspective that this Indian writer has. Some people may be offended by certain comments made by these call center workers about... Read morePublished 3 months ago by smgrosser
Its mindless, the most predictable novel I had ever read, you can predict the whole story only after few chapters.Published 6 months ago by Sam
My least favorite of his books so far but it still managed to grip me enough to finish it off in less than two days... A good read!Published 10 months ago by Deepak
Big loss. I can't believe. Big mistake. Never repeat. Thanks.Published 13 months ago by Jayaprakasan.k
This book is so disappointing I don't know what to say so this will be uncharacteristically short.
It's insulting because of all the nasty things said about Americans. Read more