Sunday, July 06, 2008

Life of Pi

We're at the beach this week and we all have beach books. Mine is "When You Are Engulfed in Flames" by David Sedaris, because nothing says the beach quite like a book with a skeleton smoking a cigarette on its cover.

My sister is reading "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel. I haven't read "Life of Pi" but it got 3.14 stars on Amazon so it must be good. I've been reading over my sister's shoulder for the past two days, but I can only see the left page due to my shoddy vantage point. I also occasionally miss a word or two whenever a woman in a skimpy bikini struts by. Anyway, here's what I've been able to find out about the book so far:

The "Pi" mentioned in the book's title is the first name of one "Pi Patel." Mr. Patel is an Indian guy who owns a hotel and doesn't like curry. I know what you're thinking: What!? An Indian person who doesn't like curry? That can't be true... could it?

Pi's family owns a zoo and tries to move their animals from India to somewhere else (the unknown destination was on the right page, which I couldn't see), but along the way their boat explodes in a towering pyre of animal flesh, leaving Pi alone on a boat with a tiger. Since Pi ultimately survives the book (or so we assume), then we know that the tiger in question wasn't an Auburn Tiger, otherwise Pi would have thrown himself overboard somewhere around page 10.

I'm not sure of the details of Pi's survival, but I suspect it has something to do with his explicit knowledge of the Karma Sutra and the tiger's willingness to try new things. This also might explain why only two entities were on the boat in the beginning, but three land at Plymouth Rock and give smallpox to the natives. Or maybe I'm confusing the plot line with something else....

Either way, the next time you're at the beach I highly recommend reading either "When You Are Engulfed in Flames" or "Life of Pi." Or you could swim around in the ocean, since you can read any other day of the year but are only at the beach every once in a while.


Ryan said...

...and my sister is reading the "Life of Pi" while I look on in abject envy.

I gotta stop reading this blog. It's making my skin crawl.

Sydney said...

I actually heard about that book on NPR last week. It sounds great. A friend of mine has a beautiful, illustrated copy. (He got if from Barnes and Noble for less than $10, if you were thinking of buying it...

Bobby said...

That's a good deal - $10 and you get to look at pictures of a wild animal eating a human. Rock on!

I was actually going to write a followup blog entitled, "The Death of Pi." Any time the door to our condo opened, our room became a wind tunnel and all of the doors would slam shut. One fateful day, my sister's copy of the Life of Pi (non-illustrated) was lying in the doorway of the master bedroom, when someone opened the door to the condo and the master bedroom's door slammed shut, squashing the Life out of Pi. It was tragic. But kind of funny.