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Adventurous,
Epic,
Confusing

12 reviews

Life of Pi
by Yann Martel

Published: 2012-10-02
Paperback : 0 pages
23 members reading this now
34 clubs reading this now
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32 members have read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 6 of 12 members
MORE THAN SEVEN MILLION COPIES SOLD New York Times Bestseller * Los Angeles Times Bestseller * Washington Post Bestseller * San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller * Chicago Tribune Bestseller "A story to make you believe in the soul-sustaining power of fiction."—Los Angeles Times Book Review...
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Introduction

MORE THAN SEVEN MILLION COPIES SOLD

New York Times Bestseller * Los Angeles Times Bestseller * Washington Post Bestseller * San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller * Chicago Tribune Bestseller

"A story to make you believe in the soul-sustaining power of fiction."—Los Angeles Times Book Review

After the sinking of a cargo ship, a solitary lifeboat remains bobbing on the wild blue Pacific. The only survivors from the wreck are a sixteen-year-old boy named Pi, a hyena, a wounded zebra, an orangutan—and a 450-pound royal bengal tiger. The scene is set for one of the most extraordinary and beloved works of fiction in recent years.

Universally acclaimed upon publication, Life of Pi is a modern classic.

Editorial Review

Yann Martel's imaginative and unforgettable Life of Pi is a magical reading experience, an endless blue expanse of storytelling about adventure, survival, and ultimately, faith. The precocious son of a zookeeper, 16-year-old Pi Patel is raised in Pondicherry, India, where he tries on various faiths for size, attracting "religions the way a dog attracts fleas." Planning a move to Canada, his father packs up the family and their menagerie and they hitch a ride on an enormous freighter. After a harrowing shipwreck, Pi finds himself adrift in the Pacific Ocean, trapped on a 26-foot lifeboat with a wounded zebra, a spotted hyena, a seasick orangutan, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker ("His head was the size and color of the lifebuoy, with teeth"). It sounds like a colorful setup, but these wild beasts don't burst into song as if co-starring in an anthropomorphized Disney feature. After much gore and infighting, Pi and Richard Parker remain the boat's sole passengers, drifting for 227 days through shark-infested waters while fighting hunger, the elements, and an overactive imagination. In rich, hallucinatory passages, Pi recounts the harrowing journey as the days blur together, elegantly cataloging the endless passage of time and his struggles to survive: "It is pointless to say that this or that night was the worst of my life. I have so many bad nights to choose from that I've made none the champion."

An award winner in Canada (and winner of the 2002 Man Booker Prize), Life of Pi, Yann Martel's second novel, should prove to be a breakout book in the U.S. At one point in his journey, Pi recounts, "My greatest wish--other than salvation--was to have a book. A long book with a never-ending story. One that I could read again and again, with new eyes and fresh understanding each time." It's safe to say that the fabulous, fablelike Life of Pi is such a book. --Brad Thomas Parsons

Excerpt

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Discussion Questions

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Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

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Book Club Recommendations

Read the Book See the Movie
by comurray (see profile) 02/21/13
It would be interesting to have some members only read the book and others only see the movie.

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
  "Not sure what all the hype is"by carlymu (see profile) 10/22/13

This book did nothing for me....slow slow slow. Was so glad when it was finally over. It could have easily been written in under 100 pages.

 
  "Life of Pi"by Carolyn0914 (see profile) 07/03/13

A must read along with viewing the movie. Various viewpoints from book club members contribute to an excellent discussion. A story long to be remembered.

 
  "Not worth reading."by anderson2 (see profile) 04/08/13

Poorly written, very slow.

 
  ""Life of Pi" Missed the Boat"by nbaker (see profile) 03/25/13

I found the book an interesting read that posed many self-evaluating questions. It was filled with symbolism and interwoven stories. For those reasons, I gave it a thumbs up. Unfortunately, I felt the... (read more)

 
  "ugg"by Lorikel (see profile) 03/11/13

 
  "Life of Pi"by KM (see profile) 03/08/13

 
  "Life of Pi"by comurray (see profile) 02/21/13

I found the book to be mesmerizing and thought provoking. In my mind, the entire story is a metaphor for religion. 2 years after having read it, it is still a topic for lively conversation. Excellent book... (read more)

 
  "Life of Pi"by Jen171819 (see profile) 01/15/13

 
  "Pompous and pointless"by dborda (see profile) 12/10/12

Our book club read this several years ago and no one liked it. The author's tone is smug and he seems to want to hit the reader over the head with whatever metaphysical point he is trying to make. It was... (read more)

 
  "Wonderful"by Kathee (see profile) 11/25/12

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