Man Booker Prize, Fiction, 2002
Pi Patel has been raised in a zoo in India. When his father decides to move the family to Canada and sell the animals to American zoos, everyone boards a Japanese cargo ship. The ship sinks, and 16-year-old Pi finds himself alone on a lifeboat with a hyena, an orangutan, a zebra with a broken leg, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger.
Soon it's just Pi, the tiger, and the vast Pacific Ocean - for 227 days. Pi's fear, knowledge, and cunning keep him alive until they reach the coast of Mexico, where the tiger disappears into the jungle. The Japanese authorities who interrogate Pi refuse to believe his story, so he tells a second one - more conventional, less fantastic. But is it more true?
A realistic, rousing adventure and meta-tale of survival, Life of Pi explores the redemptive power of storytelling and the transformative nature of fiction. It's a story, as one character claims, to "make you believe in God".
©2001 Yann Martell (P)2002 HighBridge Company
"A story to make you believe in the soul-sustaining power of fiction and its human creators." (Los Angeles Times Book Review)
"If this century produces a classic work of survival literature, Martel is surely a contender." (The Nation)
"You've read it, right? No? Oh, God, hurry up. Life of Pi is wonderful." (Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly)
I found every moment of this book to be pure gold. I agree that the audio version is perhaps even more perfect than the hard copy because the reader captures so brilliantly the comic timing and philosophic profundity with his subtle Indian accent and dry wit. I will certainly listen to this book again and again and again. And so should you.
I waited more than a month to write this review to see if I would still feel the same...I do. This book is destined to be a classic, and the audio version is possibly better than the printed one. The reader does a perfect job of bringing Pi to life. This book will make you ponder life, religion, and truth. When you are finished with this fictional novel, you'll undoubtedly have a fresh perspective on reality. I recommend it whole-heartedly. Listen...you'll not regret it.
An Indian Boy grows up as the son of a zookeeper. Heads off on a boat to Canada, where the story takes off... Very funny at times, drags (just a bit) early on. The narrator is Indian and tells the story from the viewpoint of the boy. Fantastically told! For a story so outrageous, the narrator makes it believable. Leaves you feeling good and believing that anything is possible. Highly Recommended.
Unlike some audiobooks that you feel are being read to you, the reader of this, Jeff Woodman, really has you believing he is the person telling the story, and he's telling it straight to you! No work of fiction is going to capture everyone's fancy, but for me this was a remarkable work that I've recommended to many friends already, and will share with my boys soon.
I earlier gave this book a very critical review. I could not stomach the first part that was heavily religious. However, after reading another review, I decided to give it a second chance, and happy am I that I did so.
What an incredible story. It is engrossing, charming, pure of heart, shocking, and revitalizing. The protagonist is a wonderful character that never lets go of his will to give his life meaning through telling a good story.
In the end, it is not at all about religion, or faith in religion. The protagonist pities those who reject religion not because they reject the truth, but because they miss out on the best story. And the same can be said for this book, which I think you shouldn't miss.
And, importantly, the narration is very nicely done
This book is not for the faint of heart (or for the 'short-attention-span'). Although some may have found it overly tedious, I would have to challenge that this is a brilliant unity of effect, recreating for the reader the long and thoughtful journey the characters went through. It is a simulation, of sorts, of those lazy summer afternoon stories with grandpa out on the veranda, that is, a reward for those with the patience and stillness of mind and imagination to appreciate it. In our high octane society, this book is a welcome change of pace.
This book takes you on a journey of soul searching for yourself. You understand the importance of a simple bite of food, the generousity of friends, the power of the universe. The character development is suberb and the narrator is what makes this book incredible. I am convinced it is better to listen to the story as opposed to reading it. I cannot imagine anyone attempting to make this into a movie since it would diminish the sheer work of ones imagination. Do yourself a favor and read/listen to it.
I have an audible library of over 300 books, and this is my first 5 star, truly perfect review. I thought this book was incredibly moving, spiritual without being "churchy" and inspiring in every manner. The audible performance is also fantastic. The production, ennunciation, and word usage is just flawless.
A big, huge, HUGE, thumbs up !!
I can understand why this book won the Booker prize. The story is at times grotesque and yet is always oddly compelling. It is improbable yet realistic, horrific yet uplifting. The book also inspires reflection, which I suppose is the hallmark of "literature". There were points in this book that I almost stopped listening, it was too gory, too improbable, and yet I had to know what happened next, where will this story take me? The first part is, as many other reviewers have noted, somewhat slow. Furthermore I was wondering where is this lifeboat with a tiger that I was promised by the story blurb? However, once I got to that lifeboat I found that the prestory was quite helpful, filling out the character and making some of the earlier remarks that seemed out of place, meaningful.
The narration of this book was quite good, capturing well the matter of fact yet hallucinatory tone of the story. At first the story was difficult to follow and I had to back to the book to ensure that I hadn't somehow skipped a section. My brother in law said it was cheating to listen to this book, but I disagree. I think that the act of listening slowed down the experience and made it more poignant and forceful than reading it on paper. It is easy to skip or skim sections while reading when they first make you uncomfortble but more difficult to do while listening and so I at least absorbed the story more fully hearing it rather than reading it.
If you are looking for literature this is it. It has a well developed theme, well employed literary devices and plenty of meat for analysis. If you are looking for an easy to follow story for entertainment you may be disappointed.
Very original, thoughtful and just a great story. It's a really enjoyable book. The narration is just perfect, you feel like Pi is telling his fascinating story right to you, the narrator captured the character very well. Highly recommended.
"A deeply worrying message"
The message of Life of Pi is simple - lies are better than truth. Personally I find this to be a deeply worrying message.
The fake Indian accent grates after a while.
I would have cut all the religious aspects, as they are relentless and very tiring. I get it, Martel wants you to believe in fairy tales/religion because the real world is full of bad things. Personally I'd take truth, evidence, and reality any day. Nothing good comes from believing lies.
Quite how this turgid, preachy nonsense ever won awards is beyond me.
"I loved this book"
Great storytelling, destined to be a classic.
Listen, read but you must hear this story.
"A very worthy story!"
A must to listen, read and watch I have done all 3 now and each year of the mediums are every bit as enjoyable as the others. I highly recommend this s story!
"Surviving the storms"
This is the story of Pi Patel, an Indian boy from Pondicherry, and Richard Parker, the Bengal Tiger, as they survive together after the ship they are travelling on sinks in a storm. Expertly written and wonderfully narrated, I highly recommend to anyone in search of an adventure that tests human and animal survival capacities to the limit.
Poignant and philosophical, this story makes you rethink about how we perceive the world around us and the challenges we face. As Pi says in an interview after landing in Mexico "the world isn't just the way it is, it is how we understand it".
"Amazing from the start till the end"
Better than the film. highly recomended. the naration was excellent. very easy to follow. loved it
b b b b b b. bb b b b b b b b b b da dm ck vn
This is such a wonderful book. Narration is strong and easy to listen to. Narrator brings the necessary humor which makes the sadness of the tale bearable. One of my very favourite novels. I shall listen again and again.
even if you've already seen and enjoyed the movie (as I had, and did) this in my opinion is a must.
"Good book, odd reading."
Indian accent is terrible. Why not get someone with a native Indian accent? Brilliant book, to me about how religion is perception. What some people might call God, others will see as nature or science. Which is the better story?
"Life of Pi"
I wasn't sure what to expect from this story but thoroughly enjoyed it. The performance was perfect and the storyline unusual and entertaining.
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