Genre: Contemporary Adult Fiction
Length: 326 pages
Audiobook Length: 12 hours and 53 minutes
First Published: 2001
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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?
Quotes from Life of Pi
“It is true that those we meet can change us, sometimes so profoundly that we are not the same afterwards, even unto our names.”
“When you’ve suffered a great deal in life, each additional pain is both unbearable and trifling.”
“You must take life the way it comes at you and make the best of it.”
“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?”
“I suppose in the end, the whole of life becomes an act of letting go, but what always hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye.”
Movie Trailer for Life of Pi (2012)
About Yann Martel
Yann Martel is a Spanish-born Canadian author best known for his book Life of Pi. His other works include The High Mountains of Portugal, Beatrice and Virgil, and Self. He currently lives in Saskatchewan with his family.