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Life of Pi Audiobook

Life of Pi

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: If you've never been lost in the middle of the ocean, on a small boat filled with wild animals, you have missed a great adventure. Luckily, you have a chance to be transported to that terrifying and wondrous trip through the magic of Martell's writing and Woodman's narration. Whether you are in the car, at the gym, or walking the dog as you listen, you'll begin to feel the rock of the waves against your boat and feel the heat of a tiger's breath on your neck. (Beth Anderson)

Publisher's Summary

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

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (12996 )
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4.3 (8013 )
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Story
4.4 (7948 )
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Amy Monument, CO, USA 08-31-03
    Amy Monument, CO, USA 08-31-03
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
    Overall
    "Very entertaining"

    Started slow but picked up speed. I couldn't put it down after the first 45 minutes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris ASPLEYAustralia 08-17-03
    Chris ASPLEYAustralia 08-17-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    45
    4
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Take A Bow"

    I really enjoyed this story. I loved the intelligence and the wit. The narrators gave it that added authenticity. Unlike some, I like an unabridged, I feel like I am getting my money's worth. I wouldn't have missed a word of this one.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Everett, WA, USA 08-13-03
    Jennifer Everett, WA, USA 08-13-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
    97
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    22
    19
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "What a Fun Ride!"

    This was quite a fanciful journey! I really loved this book. It starts out with some interesting philosophical points of view by the title character, then, it switches into high gear on the high seas and I couldn't stop listening (30 minutes in the driveway everyday!). I would have given this five stars but for a couple of hokey scenes that the book would've been better without near the end, but they didn't detract enough to keep this from being one of my favorite books of the last few years. Edge of your seat story telling.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Diamond Bar, CA, USA 08-06-03
    Mark Diamond Bar, CA, USA 08-06-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
    256
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    78
    38
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    3
    0
    Overall
    "Good enjoyable story...but long"

    Really enjoyed the book and enjoyed the narrator. I'd recommend it. However, the book is loooooong. If they could make an abridged version of this it would be a close to a 5 star for me. Great story but you have to get through first 1/3 of the book before the story got my real attention.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John J Birmingham, AL, USA 08-02-03
    John J Birmingham, AL, USA 08-02-03 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    16
    1
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    0
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    "Really a great story!"

    I had been reading some survival stories and this was a real surprise; just disappointed to find that it was fiction instead of real. It is very well written, descriptions almost artistic, and will hold your attention as unexpecteds develop after realistic impossibilities.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David West Milford, NJ, USA 08-01-03
    David West Milford, NJ, USA 08-01-03
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "A Wonderful Book"

    A story unlike any other. The survival struggles of a spiratually oriented, inventive, strong-willed teen-age boy in a lifeboat--in a situation truly more bizarre than can be imagined.
    Beautifully written from the boy's point-of-view. Contains lessons for us all in the nature of the human spirit, and perhaps the very nature of God as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marvin Anderson 07-30-03 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    1
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    0
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    "Long and boring"

    other reviews said it was a good audiobook,so I made myself listen to the whole thing,,bad move..it was long and boring!!!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Ashland, NH, United States 07-24-03
    William Ashland, NH, United States 07-24-03 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    98
    4
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    0
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    Overall
    "fabulous"

    This is one of the best books I have ever read. The narrator really helps make the story come alive. The story can be appreciated on so many different levels. You never know what is going to happen next.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Loves Park, IL, USA 07-21-03
    Kevin Loves Park, IL, USA 07-21-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    0
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    Overall
    "Annoying accent"

    This story starts incredibly slowly. The narrator attempts an incredibly annoying Indian accent. I don't know that I'll be able to get all the way through it. Make sure you preview it before you buy it!

    4 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark 07-21-03
    Mark 07-21-03 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    156
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    247
    53
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    2
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    Overall
    "I like Pi"

    This a wondeful story, perfectly narrated. If you love learning new perspectives on religion, aninmals and the essence of humans, then this book will not disappoint, but delight. Please read and enjoy, as I did.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Sandra
    Redditch, worcestershire, United Kingdom
    12/17/06
    Overall
    "Nice as Pi"

    First off all thank you Jeff Woodman for the great narration of this audio book. I often listen to the books I download on my dull motorway journey to and from work.Sometimes I listen while taking a bath, others on lazy Sunday mornings in bed. It didn't matter where I listened to this book because I was always where the author wanted me to be,which in this books case from about half way through is floating in a lifeboat in the Pacific Ocean with a Bengal Tiger for company.This book describes the feelings both mentally and physically of being a starving survivor so well that I could feel my own stomach rumble and feel the heat of the sun on my own parched lips.I'm not so sure about the first fifty or so chapters that tell about Pi's school life,life as a Zoo Keepers son in India and of his devotion to religions and God, but I really enjoyed this listen and the twist at the end that certainly gets you thinking what was true and what was the mental defence a starving brain puts in place to save ones sanity.

    15 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Matt Gibson
    Bristol, UK
    10/21/07
    Overall
    "The secrets of survival, tigers and bananas..."

    I'll keep this brief: This is a good book, wonderfully read. The narration has exactly the right level of dry humour, and truly makes you believe in the stalwart, surprising character of Pi Patel.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Kirstine
    Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom
    1/6/13
    Overall
    "Unlike anything else!"

    This book is impossible to categorize! Fantasy, adventure, blood-curdling violence, indomitable human-spirit, truth v. fiction, religion, humour, natural history, animal behaviour: it has it all! I think listening to the book is better than reading it as there is an awful lot of details about sorts of things that are a bit boring, especially the first part of the book, but if you're doing something else it just flows in one ear and out the other. In the end I enjoyed it and I thought the reader was good. I went to see the film after I'd listened to the book. The film is a visual feast and a much sanitized and softened version of the savagery of the book.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Marcus
    Oxford, United Kingdom
    5/7/12
    Overall
    "Good listen"

    I liked this audiobook a lot. It does take some time to get used to the narration which sounds a little computer generated in the beginning, however that enhances the story when you come to understand the logic of it. The story is highly original and although it is not always clear where its going the ending makes it all worthwhile. It is one of those stories that is more impressive after you sit down to think about it than when you are immersed in it. It also has to be one of the only books I have read whereby after having finished it going back to chapter one feels like a continuation rather than the beginning again.
    There are many who have said that this book strengthens their faith in God, but for me it confirmed my cynicism of all religion. People will take from it what they will which is the the strength of the completed book. Books that make you think about life and the world get high marks from me and this is such a book.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Tom
    Brighton, United Kingdom
    6/9/11
    Overall
    "A must read for so many reasons"

    Life of Pi is as enjoyable as it is thought provoking. It's an absorbing, engaging story I'd recommend to anyone. I had to listen to it at every opportunity. I even volunteered to wash up and clean the whole kitchen just so I could have it on in the background!

    Jeff Woodman was the perfect narrator, I was amazed that he was able to produce an accent that merged Canadian with Indian; I felt I was listening to Pi Patel telling me his story.

    It's wonderful, download it!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Peter
    Beulah, United Kingdom
    6/23/10
    Overall
    "Strange and interesting"

    I enjoyed this book, but not quite as much as I had hoped. Because of its reputation and award, I thought it would have more depth, and maybe I missed any metaphors or spiritual message, but to me it was quite a straightforward though beautifully told story.

    The character of Pi was engaging and the strangeness of his story makes it compulsive listening, just because it is so different to anything else I have read. The depiction of Richard Parker, the oddly-named 450-pound Bengal Tiger that Pi finds himself sharing a lifeboat with is superb, as are the exploits on the boat.

    A memorable listen, well read and recommended.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Nick
    Stevenage, United Kingdom
    3/25/09
    Overall
    "Enigmatic and fascinating"

    The reader's voice took a little getting accustomed to but the story is well worth the praise and attention it has received. The narrative which brushes always against the surreal and plays it against the commonplace brutality of real life reminds the reader of the great Mervyn Peake. It touches a very real nerve in the human psyche and is highly recommended.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Mikey
    poole, United Kingdom
    12/13/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An exciting story, but with a touch of repetition!"
    Would you try another book written by Yann Martel or narrated by Jeff Woodman?

    I enjoyed the accent played by Jeff Woodman and think Yann Martel did very well to come up with a storyline for someone stranded on a lifeboat for months on end. It seems a daunting task to come up with a plot that won't lead the listener to become bored after a few hours of listening, but I think the author succeeded in keeping the listener's attention and interest throughout.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Not particularly exciting or surprising, as expected really.


    Was Life of Pi worth the listening time?

    Yes. It has urged me to seek out the film on DVD.


    Any additional comments?

    Life of Pi is a good listen. I would recommend this book to friends, it firmly places you into the shoes of someone experiencing hunger, thirst, loneliness and the desperate will to survive against all odds. This book has it's gory moments (not distasteful, the right amount too, not over the top) but vital to the theme and well executed by Martel.

    At times I found myself a bit bored as the story is set primarily on a lifeboat in the middle of the vast ocean. However, I found that I was not bored for too long as the author came up with some good twists and even gave plenty of interesting facts animals.

    An entertaining book not for the feint hearted!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Laurel
    LondonUnited Kingdom
    4/20/09
    Overall
    "Affirms the power of storytelling"

    Unlike some listeners who found the first third of the book a little slow I enjoyed it from the beginning ? with its witty observations and asides on people, animals and religion. The tale of survival had me enthralled ? it is insightful, lyrical and descriptive though perhaps it drags a little toward the end and becomes rather too fanciful. The ending cleverly draws all the elements together and makes you think about the role and importance of storytelling long after the book is finished. The excellent choice of narrator enhances the enjoyment of the novel.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Helen
    Germany
    12/4/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "??????????????"

    This book leaves me with a lot of questions and not about the plot. Why is this such a great bestseller, why is this to be said philosophical, why do so many people read such a book, why was this made in a movie????
    During listening to this book I was bored a lot of the time, I was angry about stupid assumptions, I was interested on some occations, I was glad the end got closer and closer....
    In the beginning the description of the young Pi are to long for me and the parts about religion are not very insidefull to me (taking on three religions at the same time, does not make it a world religion but stripping every religion from its meaning, or is: there is one or some gods, a real believe) besides some comments made me really doubt that the author really knows as much about animals as he wanted to make us believe (a cobra stolen from the zoo by a snake charmer is facing a live of serving?? What about they suffering from getting their teeth broken out).....
    There are very distgusting parts (e.g. the zebra gets eaten alive for a whole night and day....)
    The story is unlikly but that doesn't bother me. In the end (last 30 minutes) the story gets a really good turn (don't want to put it differntly, because it would spoil it for other readers) and makes the other part on the lifboat really symbolic, but the ten hours of description were to much.....

    10 of 15 people found this review helpful

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