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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Life of Pi

"The world isn't just the way it is. It is how we understand it, no? And in understanding something, we bring something to it, no? Doesn't that make life a story?"   ~Pi Patel

Recently, I compiled a list of books in my "To Be Read" stack and shared these on Pinterest. It was this book, Life of Pi by Yann Martel (Harcourt, Inc., 2001) that generated the most comments- all favorable. After finishing this book, I can understand how it would resonate with so many. 

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Book Description (
The son of a zookeeper, Pi Patel has an encyclopedic knowledge of animal behavior and a fervent love of stories. 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 while 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?

There are thousands of reviews of Life of Pi circulating on the Internet, in journals and numerous literary publications, so I will not even attempt to dissect my thoughts on the text or author's intent here. I do highly recommend this very well-written and thought-provoking novel to any reader interested in not only a good story to lose your own troubles and worries in but also to discover more about your own spiritual journey. I must admit I was not prepared for the riveting ending that leaves the reader to determine his/her own faith in both the story and the story teller. Throughout the novel, Pi is continually searching for understanding- in religion, science, environment, social order, and life. Yet, in the end, it is the very things that he cannot explain that hold the most meaning.

Have you read Life of Pi? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Happy Reading!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you liked it! This is one of Michael's favorite books and currently his copy is in my to be read pile : )



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