This fascinating book celebrates the human will to survive. During his journey from India to Canada, young Pi Patel is shipwrecked and winds up sharing a lifeboat with a hyena, an orangutan, a zebra and a Bengal tiger. Pi’s incredible story chronicles his struggles against the natural elements as well as against the natural instincts of the tiger. His daily life is outlined in vivid detail as the lack of food, water and shelter and the constant tension take their toll. Eventually surreal elements such as a floating island full of meercats start to surface in the story and prepare the reader for its surprising conclusion.
What the Armchair Critics Thought:
This book left us feeling somewhat unbalanced. Which Life of Pi was the real one? It was great fun to look at the parallels between the two stories. We enjoyed the exploration of spirituality as Pi tries to become a Christian, Hindu and Moslem at the same time. His disbelief that there could be only one story in the Christian religion was quite amusing. The descriptive passages were superb, especially those of the night sky above the raft. We are still wondering about the floating island and the teeth in the fruit.