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 am surprised that I am one of the few reviewers that think this is a mediocre book. While others seemed to love it or find it a total waste of time, I thought it was just OK. Ponderous at times, there were some good parts. I had difficulty relating to Pi and the religious rhetoric was often too much for me. I did like some of the animal descriptions but others showed a lack of research on the author's part. For instance the description of a whales gigantic eye being bigger than his head rang like a tin bell, particularly since even the largest of all whales has only a grapefruit sized eye. And while the description of the dorado fish changing colors when distressed was accurate, the description that all the other dorados disappearing when one was hooked (it actually ATTRACTS other fish!) made it obvious that the narrator had never lived the story he was describing. Still and all if you are a religious type with some time to kill, you just might enjoy it. But do yourself a favor and get the abridged version.
This is an amazing book. It really explores the core components of human's nature. I found myself mentally stimulated and enriched by this listening. Ah, to growth, to explore one's feelings, to hope -- just by listening to this book.
THE LIFE OF PI is a truly amazing book in its scope and depth. It explores philosophy, religion, various cultures, and the care and training of animals and the most amazing thing is that, while doing all these things, the author manages to tell a really good story. This is one of the best books I have read (heard) in years. There were many surprises! I loved the main character and his exploits. I can highly recommend this book.
I have already heard many other great audio books. My initial strategy was to get things with high ratings. This proved true on most occassions, but not all. While personal taste plays a factor in people's ratings, I must say that this book should appeal to everyone. It is worth the long unabridged version, since the author writes in a manner that makes wonderful images appear in the listners minds. I had to pause the book on several occassions to write down the descriptive words that were used or the interesting outlook to some of life's smallest details. Don't miss this one, especially the ending which is absolutely perfect.
5 STARS...two thumbs up!
Loved this book! What a great tale of human perseverance. We are taken first on a journey through adolescence in India, then across the Pacific Ocean over 7 months in a lifeboat with a tiger. Then, when all seems settled, we are flipped upside down wondering what reality really is. The story, told in the voice of Pi himself, is engaging, frightening, desperate, and triumphant. A true tale of human endurance and the ability of the human mind to create its own reality to protect itself from the pain within. Fun!
Like the other reviewers, there were times in the beginning where my mind wandered, but stick with it. The ending gave me a huge one two punch I never expected nor did I see it coming. It's great and made me wish I had payed closer attention to all the details,since you will find out that they all matter so much.
Do not hesitate... it is engrossing, hilarious and thoughtful. This book is very worthy of it's accolades, and you will find it touches both your funny bone and heart. Excellent choice.
This book was very good.
This is an interesting story, told with wit and humor. This book also has many times when one is forced to learn deep lessons from one's soul.
The narration and sound quality were excellent. The audio narrator has an Indian accent as the narator in the story would. It added to the story.
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Unlike others, I didn't think that it started slow but rather laid valuable insight for later chapters. Every so often I would wonder if it was the wording used by the author that made this such a joy to listen to, or was it the superb narration. Best book I've heard since starting my subscription a year ago.
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