Thursday, September 2, 2010

Life of Pi - Yann Martel

For some reason this book took me ages to read, but that I think was more to do with its physical size than anything else.

I'll be honest, I wasn't expecting to like this book. Some books just seem daunting and impregnable (Jonathan Franzen!), but this book was amazing. Most of the book takes place in a lifeboat in the ocean with Pi and Richard Parker, but at no point did I lose interest. It's one of those books that leaves you feeling exhausted.

My most favourite part is the last chapter, which I won't go into for anti-spoiler purposes but it left me thinking about the value of a good story. Life of Pi is definitely that.

Another book that I read that turns out not to be on my list is 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne. If you've got Moby Dick on your reading horizon then I would recommend reading this one as well. Despite the pages and pages of Professor Annorax naming the types of marine life he sees through the window, I really enjoyed it. There are a lot of unanswered questions at the end - why Captain Nemo throws his life away to live beneath the sea for one - but I didn't feel cheated. I thought it was pretty similar to Moby Dick but not quite so severe.

Next up is either Bleak House or Rebecca.


moonrat said...

This was one of those books that I didn't get or really enjoy until the bitter, bitter end, and then I was like, OH. Glad I didn't put THAT one aside. And you know what I mean (I can hear it between the lines of your review).

Compositionally, though, I do think it's an interesting book--with the opening a little dry/inaccessible.

You should read REBECCA!! It was the first Gaps book I took on, and it was awesome!

Linda said...

I felt exhausted at the end of Life of Pi too.

Nana Fredua-Agyeman said...

I have this book on my Top 100. Just finishing Possession and I think she reached out too much. Too much diary entries and all that... do we really need to know all these....?

brionywilliamson said...

Moonrat, you get what I'm not saying =D It is structured rather unusually. I was pretty meh about it until I finished reading, so I guess that's the sign of a well written booK!

Possession is pretty dense!