Life of Pi by Yann Martel

About the book

Life of Pi is a fantasy adventure novel by Yann Martel published in 2001. The protagonist, Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel, a Tamil boy from Pondicherry, explores issues of spirituality and practicality from an early age. He survives 227 days after a shipwreck while stranded on a boat in the Pacific Ocean with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

Reviewed by Forest Arts Reading Group:

Excellent book. Really makes you think. Well written and endearing, we loved it, thank you!

Star rating: ****

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14 thoughts on “Life of Pi by Yann Martel”

  1. Review by Keyhaven Yacht Club:
    For the first time we all enjoyed this book. Knowledgeable, imaginative, exciting, extraordinary, thoughtful and funny.
    Star rating: ****

  2. Review by Hawkley Book Group:
    Beautiful, imaginative writing style. Extremely well researched. Philosophy and religious side came over as rather pretentious. Some members did not like the ending.
    Star rating: ***

  3. Review by Cowdray Reading Group:
    Slow start, hard to get into. A challenge to read. An outrageous story, very vivid imagination. Middle bit exciting. Boys ideas on religion very interesting. Very strange ending, needs explaining.
    Star rating: **+

  4. Review by Wallington Village Reading Group:
    Those who persisted with the book enjoyed it. a ‘very tall story’. Well written zoological detail, well researched. what was the truth? Provocative prose. Original. Very different.
    Star rating: ****

  5. Review by Readers for Pleasure:
    All thought the ‘animal behaviour’ side made quite an impact on them. It was also quite illuminating about human behaviour, i.e. strengths and weaknesses in adversity.
    Star rating: **/***

  6. Review by Petersfield U3A Group 1:
    Everyone enjoyed it! A remarkable feat of the imagination it made us think about the boundaries of credibility. Unskippable descriptions.
    Star rating: ****

  7. Review by Havant Reading Group:
    This is a very unusual and thought provoking novel. It is a good book for reading group discussion and will generate some lively debates.
    Star rating: ***

  8. Review by Phoenix Reading Group:
    The group was split evenly on this book. Half gave up and said it was fantasy and they are realists. Half marvelled at the authors knowledge and ability to spin a fantastic, yet almost believable tale. Was the alternative story the truth? Who knows. A lovely book.
    Star rating: ***

  9. Review by Goodworth Clatford WI Reading Group:
    Clever, well written. Could be read on several levels. Made to seem believable. Lots of symbolism. Page turner.
    Star rating: ****

  10. Review by Books and Biscuits Reading Group:
    Mixed reactions! All agreed a tough and sometimes uncomfortable read. Packed with tension and suspense. We enjoyed the way it made us think and empathise with the characters but frustrated by the somewhat ‘open’ ending and incoherence of the religious themes with the character’s adventure.
    Star rating: **

  11. Review by Shipton Bellinger WI reading group:
    At last a Booker winner most of us enjoyed. As one member said, a modern fairy story. Funny yet informative. Learn how to train a tiger, you never know when it could be useful!
    Rating: ****

  12. Review by Andover Library:
    Everyone finished the book but with mixed reviews – a ‘marmite’ book – some loved it, some found it too fantastical. People found the alternative ending spoilt the book, others found it made good reading. A thought provoking book.
    Star rating: ***

  13. Review by Andover HIP Reading Group:
    Interesting fantasy. Relgious elements in first part were somewhat laboured but most persevered to the end.
    Star rating: ***

  14. Review by Milford Reading Group
    We found the book most unusual and written by soemone with a vivid imagination.
    Rating: **

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