Monday, January 7, 2013

Review: Life of Pi by Yann Martel

Life of Pi
Paperback, 401 pages
Published May 3rd 2004 by Mariner Books
Pi Patel is an unusual boy. The son of a zookeeper, he has an encyclopedic knowledge of animal behavior, a fervent love of stories, and practices not only his native Hinduism, but also Christianity and Islam. When Pi is sixteen, his family emigrates from India to North America aboard a Japanese cargo ship, along with their zoo animals bound for new homes.

The ship sinks. Pi finds himself alone in a lifeboat, his only companions a hyena, an orangutan, a wounded zebra, and Richard Parker, a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Soon the tiger has dispatched all but Pi, whose fear, knowledge, and cunning allow him to coexist with Richard Parker for 227 days lost at sea. When they finally reach the coast of Mexico, Richard Parker flees to the jungle, never to be seen again. The Japanese authorities who interrogate Pi refuse to believe his story and press him to tell them "the truth." After hours of coercion, Pi tells a second story, a story much less fantastical, much more conventional-but is it more true?
Life of Pi is at once a realistic, rousing adventure and a meta-tale of survival that explores the redemptive power of storytelling and the transformative nature of fiction. It's a story, as one character puts it, to make you believe in God.
My Thoughts/Review
I bought this book a few years ago meaning to read it but it just sat on my shelf and I never got to read it. Then I saw that the movie was coming out so I planned to read it before it came out. But that got delayed a little bit because I wanted to listen to it on audiobook from my library. The wait was very long so that is why I haven't finished it until now.
 Can I just start off by saying that this book completely took me by suprise. I loved the simpleness of it and how it is such a standard type of story that takes you on an adventure at sea. I didn't think I would give this book a 5 out of 5 stars but the ending completely changed the rating for me. It was completely unexpected when I should have expected it.
This is a simple story of a boy lost at sea after a shipwreck with a 450 pound bengal tiger who fights for survival, who wouldn't want to read that story, just to find out what happens. I loved every part of this book. It is broken up into different sections. The before, which tells a history of Pi Patel's family zoo and the life he lived before and his search for religion, which was only simply touched upon. The middle, with the shipwreck and everything that happens. And the after, which is what changed the whole story for me. If you read the book you know what I am talking about, and the ending really renewed my whole sense of why I love this book.
Pi Patel was such an amazing character. I loved going on his journey with him and how he had to fight for the courage and strength to survive on that lifeboat. All of the things he had to go through to survive for a long time in the ocean was just a spectacular feat to me. This story truly is "a modern classic, combining grand story telling with a profound exploration of ageless themes: faith and truth, fact and fiction, man versus nature and innocence and experience." The ending and Pi's faith in God, are two of the things that really have kept this book in my head after I have read it.
I loved that Pi believes in many different religions and keeps his faith through out the book. Also I love how the ending makes you look back at everything that has happened and makes you question it and look at it in a whole different light. In the end, this book lets you have a choice, and everyone gets to believe what they want to believe. I am so glad I read this book and I absolutely recommend it to everyone. If you have even the slightest interest in reading it you must read it because it is definitely worth it. I now really can not wait to see the movie and I hope it will be as spectacular as the book was. =]
Overall, I give this book:
"An amazing story of survival and faith that you have to read to believe." =]
5 out of 5 Stars
Links to Check it Out:
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Happy Reading. =]

1 comment:

  1. I read this book for a class in college and I really enjoyed it.

    I liked your review. Although, yes the book is simple, it is way more complex and thought provoking once you get to the ending.