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)
Let me put it this way: I studied the plot? (a very loosely tied string of happenings, if you ask me), and found no deeper meaning. I listened to the narrator, and found no poetic prose. I understand it's supposed to be the story of someone's life, and there is no real meaning in a life, however; I just don't get it, what are we reading all this for? I kept waiting for the punch line, or the redeeming message. ... and then, well, my reward for my time and persistence? ...not so much. (lol) Did I mention I don't get it? live and learn...
The book begins slowly, with seemingly irrelavent intermittant dialogues with a 'narrator'; presumedly the fictional author of the tale. Evenutally the book evolves into an enthralling story (as soon as the character takes to sea) that challenges preconceptions of reality, experience, and memory.
I LOVED this book. I can see why some reviewers have said that it got a slow start, but that narrative I thought made the main story line (a man surviving at sea in a lifeboat with a tiger) somewhat believable.
I also can't imagine having read this book rather than hearing it as an audio book. I loved the narration. It was beautifully done and I can still hear Pi's voice in my head as my mind keeps bringing up some of the images from the book as well as some of its lessons.
This book was a little difficult to get involved with, but once into the book it was excellent.
I enjoyed every minute and the great descriptions of the sights, sounds, and smells experienced by Pi. I felt like I was actually with Pi.
I would recommend this book to anyone. I think this book takes you on a trip to a different world and forces you experience the journey
If you can read through the first bit, you should have no problem finishing it. The book is so well described it is almost like you're with Pi on his journey.
I loved this book. I loved the creativity of it, and the ending. Or possible alternate stories one can come up with. I went on to read more about the author online and read up on his take on the book. Very interesting. I still think about Pi to this day, even though it's just a character in a novel. The psychological trauma he went through still pains me to this day, as a reader! I certainly don't look at tigers the same way anymore!
I had browsed this title at the book store and the synopsis seemed very interesting. I bought the audio version and listened for well over two hours before the first glimpse of the book description came into play. The first segment of the book does carry a lot of importance throughout the rest of the main story, so be patient with this one and stick with it :)
This is one of those books that MUST be discussed with a fellow reader. The prose is excellent and the narrator brings it alive. My husband and I both loved it, and spent too much time in the driveway to savor every last bit of the chapters before going into the house. A must read-must share book.
Life of Pi has good writing and creative storytelling. I enjoyed the narration and the story made me think. I knew from the bookjacket that the story starts with a boy, a tiger, a zebra, a hyena and an orangutan in a lifeboat and that soon it's just the boy and the tiger. Being an animal lover, I didn't like, however, the excruciating detail regarding the deaths of the other animals. Those parts would have been best left to the imagination. Other than that, an amazing work of fiction.
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