Thursday, June 12, 2008

Life of Pi, The End

This was a busy week that left little time to read, hence the infrequent posts. However, I only semi-enjoyed Life of Pi, so the urgency to want to read it wasn't there either. But, I finally finished the book last night. I wrote in my previous post that some reviews I read said there was a "payoff" at the end. I was actually more disappointed at the end then I was throughout the entire book.

The book follows Pi, a young Indian boy, whose ship sinks on the way to Canada. Son of zookeeper, Pi is left on a lifeboat in the middle of the ocean with a zebra, hyena, orangutan and a giant Bengal tiger. Soon, because of the obvious food chain, Pi is left alone with the tiger. A majority of the story follows the survival of the two, surviving the elements and surviving each other. Reading about some of Pi's survival techniques were interesting. Being of a zookeeping family, Pi also had much knowledge about animals, and those passages were interesting, too.

In the end though, I found the book too drawn out. Part I barely intertwined with Part II or III. All the set up of Part I seemed to mean nothing for the rest of the story. The author spends much of Part I exploring Pi's religious beliefs. As Part II is about his survival in the middle of the ocean, I was expecting more reflection on Pi's feelings about God. Part II was too long and Part III was, in all honesty, kind of lame. I found the ending predictable, but I don't want to go into it in case it would spoil the book for someone. In the beginning, the author claims the story "will make you believe in God." He didn't deliver on that promise. (Not that a novel would necessarily have that impact on someone, but I don't even find it believable that it might.)

I know there are plenty of people out there who probably disagree with me about the book, and I'm open to hearing why people like the book. Or, if you feel the same as me, let me know that, too.


Mr. Matt Christensen said...

Sorry you didn't like Life of Pi as much I do. Martel himself blogged with me and my class at It was wonderful to have him and Andrea Offermann and Tomislav Torjanac, premier artists who create Pi images, interact with my students.

A. said...

Thanks Matt! Maybe if I read the book with a teacher like you to help me along, I would've enjoyed it more. I appreciate your comments and I'm so glad your students are reading and liking it!