The Life of Pi, by Yann Martel, has to be one of the best books I have read in a long time. (Yes, even up on the list with Harry Potter.) Granted, I only wanted to read it at first because of its intriging book-cover. I know, I know: don’t judge a book by its cover, I get it. But, who doesn’t want to read a book covered with a picture of a boy and a tiger both riding in a boat together? Besides, I honestly wanted to know if this book was about a person, or somehow related to math; I prefered the former. Then I turned over the cover and realized this book was much more than a cover.
Starting off his life living in India, Piscine “Pi” Patel, grows up around animals, which his parents keep in the zoo they own. Adventurous and inquisitive, young Pi yearns for understanding about animal psychology as well as religion. Though raised a Hindu, he searches to find answers about religion through learning about Christianity and Islam. Comparing them to each other he proclaims, “I just want to love God”. Later on in his life, his family decides to sell their animals and move to Canada. The ship they are on wrecks. Pi survives: Pi is the only human who survives. Lucky for him, he finds a small lifeboat; sadly, he’s not alone. Some of the animals survive, including: a zebra, a orangataung, a hyena, and a tiger. They slowly kill themselves off, leaving Pi to deal with the Tiger while at the same time trying to survive, in the middle of the ocean.
Yann Martel wrote no ordinary survival story, but a masterpiece. His book, stares you in the face, and asks you questions you’d never even thought of before. I did not want to stop reading and I know that sounds cliché, but it’s true. Reading this book feels like reading a book about the meaning of life, like all the answers are in your hand. The ending, though a tad but sad (only because the book has ended), satisfies the reader by wrapping the story up like a perfectly packaged present. All together, I’d give this book four and a half stars. A must read for ages 14-114, you won’t regret it.