life of pi. A NOVEL author's note. This book was born as I was hungry. Let me explain. In the An element is missing, that spark that brings to life a real story. Life of Pi is a fantasy adventure novel by Yann Martel published in The protagonist, Piscine Molitor "Pi" Patel, a Tamil boy from Pondicherry, explores issues of spirituality and practicality from an early age. He survives days after a shipwreck while stranded on a boat. The Life of Pi by Yann Martel. The Life of Pi is an adventurous novel that takes an alternative look at faith, not specifically religion. It’s the story of a boy named Pi Patel whose family decides to move from Pondicherry to Canada.
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Nonton dan download Life of Pi () sub indo. Sinopsis: In Canada, a writer visits the storytellers of the Indian Pi Patel and asks him to tell the story of his life. Learning English requires Librarian: Well, 3 you read Life of Pi. The book a lot of motivation. If you are sure you are ready is great. It's about the life of Pi and his. Online bookstore with 45+ book and comic shops around Indonesia, 21M+ products, Indonesia's largest provider of english & bahasa books with cheapest price.
I did learn some things though, I learned that: I think I'll apply it as a general rule. I wanted to like this book more - I loved the cover and then there's that little golden seal that keeps going psst, psst, you don't get it - it's waaaay deep, you missed the whole point.
But I think no, I got the point, like a 2 by 4 to the forehead I got the dang point! What I lack in spelling, this author lacks in subtlty. I love Pi in the first 3rd, I understand the merits of Pi in the raft just not my thing , but pi in the last bit - ugh, ugh,ugh!
I'm chocking on the authors shoving of moral down my throat - help! I can't breath View all 94 comments. Nov 07, Miranda Reads rated it really liked it Shelves: The beginning is rough.
It's all like - Why do we keep going on and on about religion? Where's the boat? Where's the tiger? Stop and enjoy the roses. The book will get to the tiger part when it wants to. It's not a matter of he can't choose a religion - it's that he is able simultaneously believe in all of them.
The philosophical musings and religious prose provide an extremely inter The beginning is rough. The philosophical musings and religious prose provide an extremely interesting insight on how these religions intersect: If Christ spent an anguished night in prayer, if He burst out from the Cross, 'My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? But we must move on. To choose doubt as a philosophy of life is akin to choosing immobility as a means of transportation.
And then Pi Patel's life quickly shifts from one of religious philosophy and animal care at his family's zoo to one of great uncertainty. His family is closing their Indian zoo and they need to travel by boat to a new county.
Whatever animals they couldn't sell or trade are on the ship. Only, something goes wrong. The ship is capsizing and it looks like neither human nor animal will make it out alive.
Soon, Pi finds himself on a lifeboat with a menagerie of animals and within an adventure he will surely never forget. Dare I say I miss him? I miss him. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love. Such is the strangeness of the human heart.
I was so mad that we were given the two scenarios at the end of the story. It was like the rug was being pulled out from under me. According to Pi, either we are to believe the tiger adventure happened or it was the alternate version: I felt cheated and turned what was a huge triumphant moment into a truly giant downer. Blog Instagram Twitter View all 29 comments. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers.
To view it, click here. Life of Pi was a fairly engaging story in terms of plot and character, but what made it such a memorable book, for me at least, was its thematic concerns. Is it a "story that will make you believe in God," as Pi claims? I'm not sure I'd go that far, but I would recommend it to people who enjoy thinking about the nature of reality and the role of faith in our lives.
To me, the entire thrust of the book is the idea that reality is a story, and therefore we can choose our own story as the author h Life of Pi was a fairly engaging story in terms of plot and character, but what made it such a memorable book, for me at least, was its thematic concerns. To me, the entire thrust of the book is the idea that reality is a story, and therefore we can choose our own story as the author himself puts it.
So if life is a story, we have two basic choices: In fact, Pi calls atheists his "brothers and sisters of a different faith," because, like Pi, atheists "go as far as the legs of reason will carry them - and then they leap. For Pi, then, we shouldn't limit ourselves only to beliefs that can be proven empirically. Instead, we should make choices that bring meaning and richness to our lives; we should exercise faith and strive for ideals whatever the object of our faith and whatever those ideals might be.
Or, as Pi says in taking a shot at agnosticism: Instead, I saw it as a mirror held up to the reader, a test to see what kind of worldview the reader holds. That is, as Pi himself says, since "it makes no factual difference to you and you can't prove the question either way, which story do you prefer?
Which is the better story, the story with the animals or the story without the animals? Is it my nature to reach for and believe the better but less likely story? Or do I tend to believe the more likely but less lovely story?
What view of reality do I generally hold? Another equally important question is this: How did I come by my view of reality?
Do I view the world primarily through the lens of reason? Or do I view it through the lens of emotion? For Pi, I think it's safe to say his belief comes by way of emotion. He has, as one reviewer noted, a certain skepticism about reason in fact, Pi calls it "fool's gold for the bright". Pi also has what I would call a subtle but real basis for his belief in God, namely, "an intellect confounded yet a trusting sense of presence and ultimate purpose.
Despite his trusting sense of purpose, Pi acknowledges that "Love is hard to believe, ask any lover. Life is hard to believe, ask any scientist. God is hard to believe, ask any believer. This is not to say, however, that Pi holds a thoroughly postmodern view of God or that he believes as a matter of art rather than in a sincere way. True, Pi suggests that whether you believe his story had a tiger in it is also a reflection of your ability to believe in something higher.
And of course it's easy to read Pi's entire story as an attempt to put an acceptable gloss on a horrific experience. Still, there are a number of clues throughout the book that give the reader at least some reason to believe Pi's story did have a tiger in it for instance, the floating banana and the meerkat bones.
As such, Pi's two stories could be seen as an acknowledgement that both atheism and belief in God require some faith, and therefore it's up to each of us to choose the way of life that makes us the happiest.
He's not necessarily saying that the truth is what you make it, he's saying we don't have unadulterated access to the truth: But that's not the same as saying whatever we imagine is true. I think Pi, for instance, knows which of his stories is true. It's not Pi but the reader who is left with uncertainty and who therefore has to throw her hands up and say "I don't know," or else choose one story or the other.
And to me, this isn't too far off from the predicament we all find ourselves in. And that's what makes Life of Pi such a challenge to the reader: Pi's first story is fantastic, wonderful, but hard to believe.
Yet there's some evidence that it happened just the way he said it did. And Pi's second story is brutal, terrible, but much easier to accept as true. Yet it's not entirely plausible either, and it leaves no room for the meerkat bones or Pi's "trusting sense of presence and ultimate purpose. In the same way, if the reader gets to the story's payoff and still believes there was a tiger in the boat, the reader is probably inclined to believe the more emotionally satisfying story.
But it should be born in mind that Pi doesn't definitively state which story was true, something which only he can know for sure. All we can really be sure of, in Pi's universe, is that he was stuck on a lifeboat for a while before making it to shore. So which story do I believe? I struggled with that question for a long time. But after thinking about it for a couple of days, I'll end this review with the final lines from the book: Patel, and none in the company of an adult Bengal Tiger.
View all 20 comments. I read this book two years ago, but when we discussed it this month for book club, I remembered how much I liked it. A good discussion always ups my appreciation of a novel as does an ending that makes me requestion my givens in the story. I find myself reading contradictory interpretations and agreeing with both sides. That's the beauty of symbolism: Initially it took me several weeks to get into the book.
The beginning reads more like a textboo I read this book two years ago, but when we discussed it this month for book club, I remembered how much I liked it. The beginning reads more like a textbook with inserted clips of the main character's future self.
While the knowledge I gained about zoology and theology was interesting, it wasn't intriguing enough to keep me awake for more than a few pages at a time and often I found the tidbits a confusing distraction. But with distance I enjoyed the backdrop information it offered.
If you're struggling through the initial background, jump ahead to the second section. Yeah it's important, but it's not vital. And maybe once you've read the story you'll want to come back and appreciate his analysis. I highly enjoyed this strange journey at sea and found it almost believable--until the castaways encounter the island at which point I wondered how much of his sanity wavered.
Being shipwreck is one of a plethora of phobias I have. Throw on top my even stronger fear of tigers and this was a story straight out of a nightmare, one that kept me intrigued for a resolution. How could a boy keep the upper hand shipwrecked with a tiger? I had a picture in my head of Pi clinging to the side of the boat to avoid both the salty water infested with sharks and a foodless boat housing a hungry carnivore.
I found myself stuck in the unusual place where as a reader I find a story plausible with full knowledge that had this story been presented in real life I would have doubted its authenticity.
I wanted to believe the story and all its fantasy. The end initially annoyed me, but if you look at the rich metaphors in the story, it becomes delectable for a story analyst like me.
There is nothing I enjoy more than tearing apart a story and pulling out the intentions and symbols buried inside.
Instead of just a fantastical story, you find a fable with a moral. Spoilers here.
Even the name Richard Parker is a hint at cannibalistic roots since it is the true account of a sailor who died at the hands of his cannibalistic crew members.
I keep going back to that moment when Pi calls for Richard Parker to join him on the ship and then is appalled at what he has done. Once Richard Parker has joined his voyage, there is no banishing him.
If they are one and the same, they beautifully represent that internal battle between the civilized vegetarian and the animalistic instinct to survive, showing the compartmentalization he needed to prevent madness. You would not expect the small boy to conquer the beast whether animal or himself , and yet he keeps the upper hand for an unimaginable days.
Had the cannibal overrun his pysche, he would have lost his battle and landed a madman. When the duo landed on the beaches of Mexico, Richard Parker took off, never to be noted by civilians again, but alive and surviving. Thus the horror of the incident will always live in Pi's memory but he chooses to repress it as it has no part in civilization. I enjoyed the portrayal of the characters on the boat as animals. I could envision the quiet maternal sadness the orangutan gave his mother.
Since the crew would be blamed for the demise of the ship, the wounded sailor as the zebra lying as prey to a demented and angry foreign chef who is just as crazy as we view the viscous hyena. The symbols were perfect and I think a second read would bring out their traits even stronger. Some of the richest symbolism comes from the cannibal island and sailor. I think Pi's childlike mind could not deal with the cannibalism of a loved one and lets this theme leak into other story elements.
The blind sailor is a second portrayal of the French chef, a character too big and conflicting to fit into one projection. At first he is the mean animal thinking only of his own survival, but as the journey progresses, Pi is conflicted with his friendship for the man. A bond is bound to happen between the only two survivors in limited space and Pi could not come to terms with his human feelings for the barbaric man.
So he invents a second character, one whom he can make human, worthy of connection, but in the end is still untrustworthy and Pi must kill or be killed. So what of the strange island? In his hallucinating state, it serves as a mirage where life is not as sweet as he suspected.
The island parallels his own problems at sea with rich religious symbolism of the Garden of Eden. No matter what one's ethical code, the will to survive trumps one's moral haven. These vegetarians person and island don't want to harm, but are killing to survive.
Something happened out at sea that his waning mind and blindness both real and spiritual could not substantiate and like all else he twisted it to a socially accepted tale. Since the island is discovered just after the sailor dies, maybe finding one of the chef's tooth on board turned him. Or maybe Pi happened upon a pile of garbage infested with rats and this boy, starving and demented enough to have tried his own waste, sees it as a heaven. His civilized nature knew he should scorn the filth but his barbaric needs were grateful for the nasty feast.
The bones in the boat, proof that his experience was real, could have been rat bones. Whatever the cause of his epiphany, he had to enter the depths of his own personal hell to realize this was not a heaven, or Garden of Eden, and a return to civilized behavior was vital for his own survival.
Richard Parker was winning as he felt completely detached from civilization. He almost wished to stay and die at sea, to live at a level of base survival, instead of have to emotionally deal with his ordeal to progress.
But his innate need to survive wins out as he realizes that as the lone castaway if he does not fight his mind's descent into madness, the sea will eat him mentally and literally. One of my favorite interpretations of the island is a religious fork in the road. Whatever truly happened, the island cements your belief in the first or second account. Either you see the meerkat remains as proof that the beauty of the first story is true or the island is the point at which you start questioning the credence of his tale and believe he threw in this unbelievable turn of events to ready you to accept his alternate ending.
As readers we are given the choice between two stories. We can pick the miraculous version of the first story, an icon of those who believe in God, or we can pick the grim atheist view of the pessimistic--although reasonable--second story, as do those who believe science disproofs God.
In section one, Pi references religion to not only show where his beliefs give him strength but to give backbone to the religious allegory. He shows disdain for the indecisive agnostic see quotes below and bids you chose your path.
The island serves to question your own religious devotion, but you have to pick what you think it represents, which story you care to believe.
Pi states this is a story that makes you believe in God. As a believer in God and the second story, I don't think there is merely an atheist interpretation to the second. Either you accept God with a leap of faith despite dissenting controversy or you take the bleak realism and see God saved him from death at sea and even more protected him from mental anguish by healing his soul from the horrors he experienced. Both stories can justify the belief in God or justify your belief in nothing.
Just as I don't believe people who download the second story are atheists, I do not believe people who chose the first story follow blindly or idiotically. It's a matter of interpretation. The story isn't going to make you believe or disbelieve God anymore than you now do.
At first I was annoyed he recanted his story because I wanted to believe his original story. It is imaginative and well written and I didn't like being called out for believing fantasy from the fantasy itself. But how could I not love an allegorical explanation to a literal story? So now I love that he presents both stories: That is the point of the story.
View all 8 comments. Jun 06, Adrian Rush rated it did not like it Shelves: No need to reinvent the wheel. Here's my site. It doesn't matter whether what you tell people is truth or fiction, because there's no such thing as truth, no real difference between fantasy and reality, so you might as well go with the more interesting story. That's "Life of Pi" in a nutshell. Sorry to spoil it for anyone who hasn't read it yet.
Remember that season of the TV series "Dallas" that turned out to be just a dream? That's kind of how you feel after you've invested hours o No need to reinvent the wheel. That's kind of how you feel after you've invested hours of your time reading page after page of a quite engrossing survival narrative, only to find out that it was all something the survivor made up. Or was it? Ah, there's the twist that we're supposed to find so clever. But the officials from the ship company who tell Pi they don't believe his story are such hopelessly weak strawmen that the author pretty much forces you to accept the "better story.
Never mind whether it's closer to the truth -- it's just too boring, and we need colorful stories to make our lives richer. Besides, Pi and Martel say, as soon as something leaves your mouth, it's no longer reality -- it's only your interpretation of reality. So why bother grasping for the truth? You prefer the Creation story to the Big Bang?
Then go with the Creation story, even if it defies logic and scientific discovery. That's all well and good. Everyone likes a good story. But there's a time and a place for them, and the ship officials didn't need a story -- they needed to know what happened to their ship. To that end, Pi's entire tale is irrelevant anyway.
And that, in turn, makes you wonder what the whole point of the book was. Other than, maybe, to laud the power of storytelling in a really hamfisted manner. Or to advocate for taking refuge in fantastical fiction when reality is too harsh. Or to champion shallow religious beliefs "Why, Islam is nothing but an easy sort of exercise, I thought. Hot-weather yoga for the Bedouins. Asanas without sweat, heaven without strain. Or to bash agnostics. Or something. Be advised that this is not a book for children or the squeamish.
Pi's transformation from vegetarian to unflinching killer, and Richard Parker's dietary habits, are rife with gratuituously gory details about the manner in which animals suffer and are killed and eaten.
The story promises to make you believe in God. Yet with Martel's insistence that a well-crafted story is just as good as or even preferable to reality, he leaves us not believing in a god of any kind, but rather suggesting that we embrace the stories that religions have made up about their gods, regardless of those stories' relation to scientific knowledge, since the stories are so darn nice, comfy, warm, and fuzzy in comparison with real life.
Whether the God in the stories actually exists, meanwhile, becomes totally irrelevant. So ultimately, Martel makes a case for why he thinks people SHOULD believe in God -- it's a respite from harsh reality, we're told, a way to hide from life rather than meet it head-on with all of its pains and struggles -- and that's quite different from what he ostensibly set out to do.
He trivializes God into a "nice story," a trite characterization sure to offend many readers. Pi sums up this postmodern worldview by telling the ship investigators, "The world isn't just the way it is.
But Pi and Martel's solution is to avoid the whole messy thing altogether, pretend that the way things are don't really exist, and pull a security blanket of fiction over your head. Create your own reality as you see fit. That's called escapism. It's fine when you want to curl up with a good book on a rainy day and get lost in the story for a few hours, but it's a lousy way to try to deal with real life.
Pi would tell me that I lack imagination, just as he told the investigators they lacked imagination when Pi claimed he couldn't "imagine" a bonsai tree since he's never seen one, as a way of mocking the investigators' reluctance to believe in Pi's carnivorous island. Nice cultural stereotyping with the bonsai, by the way -- the investigators are Japanese. But you see the problem, right?
It's not a matter of lacking imagination. It's a matter of conflating things that are obviously imaginary with things that are obviously real. They're not one and the same. It's ludicrous to suggest otherwise. You might as well say that the story of Frodo and the Ring is every bit as real as the American Revolution.
Pi also tells us, quite pointedly, that choosing agnosticism is immobilizing, while atheists and religious folks make a courageous leap of faith. Yet immobility is precisely where Pi places us, so that by the time the book ends, you're stuck not knowing what to think about what you've just read.
Do you accept the original shipwreck story just because it's more engrossing, even if it's less believable? Or do you accept the plausible but boring story Pi gives to the officials after he's rescued? Fanciful religious allegories or cold, scientific recitation of facts that might come from the mouth of an atheist -- we're expected to pick one or the other. But it's a false dichotomy. We needn't make a choice between embracing religious tales merely because they're more interesting or settling for the sobering realities of science and reason.
We can go as far as our reason will take us and then leave ourselves open to further possibilities -- just as Pi himself suggests. That's not immobility. That's intellectual honesty -- an admission that I don't know all the answers but am willing to keep an open mind about whatever else is presented to me.
Seems better than saying you might as well just accept the better story since it really makes no difference. That's laziness. And it doesn't make for a very good story. View all 26 comments. The magically real elements make the story doubt itself; they call into question the probability of these events actually happening because they are so ridiculously unrealistic. As Pi says to those that disbelieve him: You want a story that won't surprise you.
That will confirm what you already know. That won't make you see higher or further or differently. You want a flat story. An immobile story. You want dry, yeastless factuality. Change but a few of them and the journey Pi goes on remains the same. It does not matter if he was trapped on the boat with a bunch of zoo animals or people that reflected the animals in his life, the story remains the same: Belief is stretched to absolute breaking point and sometimes it needs to be with a story like this.
And such a thing harkens to the religious ideas Pi holds. He practices several religions believing they all serve the same purpose.
This never wavers despite the violent and desperate times he eventually faces. And I really did appreciate this idea; it demonstrates unity in a world divided over matters of faith when it should not be. Again, are the details really that important? To a religious zealot such a thing boarders on blasphemy, though the harmony of such an idea speaks for itself in this book. Love is hard to believe, ask any lover. What is your problem with hard to believe?
Zoos are also described as places of wonderment for animals rich in safety and easy living, which can be true in some cases, though the horrors of bad commercial zoos and the cruelty and exploitation that go with them are completely ignored.
For me, this is not a point that can be overlooked in such fiction or in life. I did not love Life of Pi , I never could, though it is a book that made me think about the purposes of fiction and the power of stories, true or untrue.
View all 11 comments. View all 27 comments. I loved this book! I watched the film before reading the book and I loved both of them. I enjoy short chapters so this was good for me.
Best scene was the 3 religious men arguing about Pi's religion. Found it really smartly done and funny. View all 4 comments.
Just you ,an Indian small boy and a royal Bengal Tiger. But before you're thrown to that small life boat into the wide ocean Little Pi picked the best and the greatest manners of every religion ; Hinduism,Christianity, and Islam.. His life in the quite Indian small city 'Pondicherry' which was -for me- the best part of the book with its spiritual events, the zoo beautifully,amazingly colorful illustrated by words described in the first Part of the novel.
But That was calm before the storm and the events of the Part 2 where you stick at that boat with them as I've said before.. So hard those ,boring sometimes, bit disgusting but most of the time thrilling and exciting..
Into a wondrous ocean.. Then the final part A Twist like no other Well it may be the first time that I can't say which was better the movie or the novel.. The thing is the movie was stronger in some points "of course the visual effect and cinematography was BRILLIANT , a true piece of art" but otherwise it missed some important spirit of the novel.. So Still I prefer the movie a little bit..
Mohammed Arabey 20 March to 2 April my first review before reading it "The Movie is amazing Can't wait to read the book" Just for fun View all 10 comments. View all 15 comments. Aug 20, s. Those looking for an uplifting, spiritual story. Recommended to s. All this praise lauded upon the cover is instantly telling that this is a novel that has reached a wide audience, and is most likely aimed towards wide critical acclaim.
That is all fine, and bravo to Mr. Martel for being able to leave his mark on the bestseller list, something I can only imagine in my wildest of wildest dreams, but sometimes when reaching for a large audience you have to elbow out a small percentage of readers. This is a difficult novel to review as, firstly, I did enjoy reading the book. I gave in to reading this book that I have been purposely avoiding after reading the excellent review from mi Hermana.
I had a lot of fun discussing this book with her, texting her my shocks and suprises in the plot, and discussing the book in several threads with fellow Goodreaders. As anyone can see with a quick glance at the overall ratings, this book seems to really strike a chord in many readers, yet also brings a large crowd of dissenters.
In all fairness to the novel, and to my usual reading list, I have to dissect this book with the same views of novels that I would any other. Life of Pi was a pleasurable read that suffered from a heavy-handed serving of morality.
While Martel delivers one charming phrase after the next with a graceful flow, he would have greatly benefited from a touch of subtlety. All to often, Martel would draw conclusions for the reader. Martel spoils the moment by explaining that Mr.
Even more obscure ideas are spoiled in such a manner. It is that special moment of understanding an allusion in literature that keeps me reading a wide variety of texts, and it seems insulting to have someone to make connections without giving you an opportunity. It is a noble goal, and it gets people who do not typically read to like and enjoy a book, so I cannot necessarily knock him for it as that was his goal, but this is all to my chagrin.
The question now is, does Martel conclude things properly? I personally loved the conclusion to this book. He successfully pulls the rug out from under the reader and exposes the real message behind the book.
The twisting of it to bring out its essence? Notice that! Remember what we talked about!? Which, once again, is not a bad thing, if that is what you are looking for. It reminded me of something a professor once told me in a World Religions course. He described church as something that, and this is his opinion, is a crutch for those who needed it.
He compared the obligation to attend to telling a girlfriend you only hang out with them because you feel you have to and are obligated to. While his opinion is a bit harsh and easily offensive, what he was really trying to say is you should believe because you want to, not because you have to.
Once again, in hopes to reassure and reach a large audience, Martel rudely elbows out the remainder.
However, I really feel uncomfortable discussing beliefs on the open seas of the internet, and I really hope nothing said here offends you as that is not my intention. Please understand I am only speaking in relevance to my thoughts on a book, not on religion. The insistence of Martel to wrap a cool concept with spirituality is a major reason why it is so difficult to talk about this book.
The whole point here is that a lot of what Martel says has been said before, better, and with more willingness to evoke a change in the reader. All that said, there is a lot that I truly enjoyed about this book. If you push all the aforementioned details aside, this was a wild ride. This made me want to visit zoos and hug a tiger. Look how cute this tiger is: After reading this book, you will know why you should never, ever try to hug a tiger or take a wild animal for granted.
He makes an interesting point how we force cute cuddly animal toys on children and make them think they are some domestic pet. Are cute cuddly animal toys then religion?
I also enjoyed how the animal story is also chock full of scientific facts and details, which fuses the idea of religion and science together instead of showing them as opposites. Thre were some symbolism, the ones he left untainted by a forced explanation, that really struck me.
The tiger itself is open for many views, either as God, Pi, or life itself - something we must face and tame lest it destroy us. However, could it be the killer inside us all, an urge and animalistic force we must keep in check in order to exist in a civilized society? In a way, I felt that the ending could almost be an attack on religion, showing it as nothing more than a pretty way of viewing a world as ugly as our own.
I felt that the tarpauline served as a similar symbol. It was a feeling of security, something to stand on, but underneath was the violent truth of a deadly tiger. Perhaps it was our personal sense of security which is actually just thin and flimsy.
When Martel doesn't slap us with his meaning, it is quite good. I was simply not the intended audience for this novel. However, Martel has a positive message that he wanted to reach a wide audience in hopes to spread peace to a world badly in need of it, so I cannot be too harsh on him. He achieved his goals for the novel, but his novel did not reach my goals for literature. Still, this was a fun read and I would recommend it.
Because you deserve them: Dec 13, Tiffany rated it it was ok Recommends it for: I discovered early in The Life of Pi why the main character was named after a infinite number - the book is an interminable bore. This book is sort of a Rorschach test for religious belief, so here's my take. If you haven't read Pi yet and want to, the rest of my review will spoil it for you, so be warned. The story is told in 3 parts. The opening is a reflection back on Pi's childhood at the zoo in Pondicherry.
During this segment, he tells us that his story will lead us to have faith in God, a I discovered early in The Life of Pi why the main character was named after a infinite number - the book is an interminable bore. During this segment, he tells us that his story will lead us to have faith in God, and that the next part of the story "has a happy ending. His family dies and he floats on a lifeboat with several animals including a very dangerous tiger.
At first, the tiger is hidden from Pi's view, but as he becomes more desperate to survive and more willing to stretch the boundaries of his civilized nature, the tiger emerges and the two survive together. The tiger is symbolic of Pi's animal nature, which allows him to resort to whatever he must do to survive such a harrowing experience.
He resorts to cannibalism, eating feces, and several other disgusting things in his efforts to survive, and advises the reader not to judge him harshly. In the meantime, he is performing religious rituals that he makes up and says that God helped him survive. My reading of this was fairly dark and I'm assuming this was tongue in cheek. He talks in one breath about atrocities and in the next about God saving him. It struck me as the opposite of Martel's stated intent to make someone believe in God; rather, he was making fun of people who do.
Pi finds an island of algae where he floats for several days. It appears to be beautiful and a respite from his troubles - in actuality, it's an ugly, horrible place where innocent, peaceful creatures are gobbled up by the tiger, and Pi is happy for them to be sacrificed.
Pi's feet are burned by the ground. Fruit has teeth. Nothing is at it seems. In my opinion, the island is a representation of the promise of organized religion. It looks beautiful and promises respite from grief and sorrow, hunger and despair. But in actuality, beliefs divide us; people are killed for religion. Many times we float "alone" but for the presence of God, or we face illness, pain, death, despair.
We are left to ask ourselves why God has abandoned us if our faith is not strong. What should be good turns hideous. In the final section, Pi leaves the island and is rescued. The men who come to interview him are told the story of Pi's journey to safety, and they don't believe him. Pi at first tells them that they should take his story on faith, much like we take our religion beliefs and Biblical teachings on faith.
When the men are not satisfied about Pi's account, he changes his story so that it's easier for the interviewers to understand - saying that each animal actually represented a person. Which is true is left open to the readers interpretation. Pi tells of the atrocities he committed, and the atrocities committed by the other survivors.
He explains how he murdered one of his crewmates to survive. Then, after the other man's death, "Solitude began. I turned to God. I survived. If he hadn't committed a murder, he would have been killed by the other man.
God comes into play after there is nothing to fear. Pi asks the interviewers which story they prefer - the cleaned up version with the animals, or the version with the people committing murders and atrocities against each other.
They prefer the animal version. Pi says, "And so it goes with God. Not the version where God leaves us to struggle and we suffer, but the version where love triumphs and God stands beside us.
The "happy ending" is one that is manufactured - Martel's truth seems to be that we people of faith are dupes; if only we would look at the darkness, we would see the humanity in it. He fails to understand that that is exactly the point of faith. View all 22 comments. Aug 30, Jenny rated it did not like it Shelves: Once, while riding the bus, I told a friend I hated this book.
A guy I'd never met turned around to tell me that he was shocked and this was a beautiful book. I can sum up my hatred of this book by saying this: At the end of the book a character asks "Do you prefer the story with animals or without? View all 21 comments. Aug 11, Teresa Jusino rated it really liked it Shelves: On the surface, it's the story of a 16 year old Indian boy named "Pi" who, when he and his zookeeping family decide to transplant themselves and some animals to Canada, ends up stranded on a lifeboat with a hyena, a zebra, an orangutan, and a lb Bengal tiger named "Richard Parker.
In reality, this book is an examination of faith in all its forms. Young Pi loves God, and to prove it he becomes Christian and Muslim in addition to his nat On the surface, it's the story of a 16 year old Indian boy named "Pi" who, when he and his zookeeping family decide to transplant themselves and some animals to Canada, ends up stranded on a lifeboat with a hyena, a zebra, an orangutan, and a lb Bengal tiger named "Richard Parker. Young Pi loves God, and to prove it he becomes Christian and Muslim in addition to his native Hinduism.
He also loves animals, and much of the book examines animal psychology and its relationship to human psychology in a vibrant, interesting way. But the religious are generally terribly arrogant, so it is best not to feel insulted by their endless insults — they know not what they do. Parts of this were so badly over written that it was almost enough to make me stop reading. The bit where he is opening his first can of water is a case in point.
This takes so long and is so incidental to the story and written in such a cutesy way that I started to pray the boat would sink, the tiger would get him … I would even have accepted God smiting him at this point as a valid plotting point, even if or particularly because it would bring the story to an abrupt end.
This is a book told as two possible stories of how a young man survives for days floating across the Pacific Ocean told in chapters. That was the other thing that I found annoying — much is made of the fact this story is told in chapters — but I could not feel any necessity for many of the chapters.
You know, in Invisible Cities Calvino has necessary chapters — this book just has chapters. It was something that annoyed me from early on in the book — that the chapters seemed far too arbitrary and pointing it out at the end just made me more irritated. Pi is the central character in the book who, for some odd reason, is named after a swimming pool — I started playing with the ideas of swimming pools and oceans in my head to see where that might lead, but got bored.
There is a joke in the early part of the book about him possibly becoming Jewish ha ha — or perhaps I should draw a smiley face? The only religion missing entirely from the book is Buddhism. Well, when I say entirely, it is interesting that it is a Japanese ship that sinks and that the people Pi tells his story to are Japanese engineers.