When finding myself on holiday bookless after embarking on what I thought would be a gruelling read in the form of J.R. Tolkiens, the Hobbit, and being pleasantly surprised with this refreshing, quick and adventurous page flicker. Compared to its older brothers The Lord of The Rings trilogy which found me spending many an hour slogging on through pages trying to decipher who was related to who’s 6th, 7th, 8th cousin.
I pick up my iPhone and dived into the cult world of electronic book readers, via firstly downloading an appropriate iPhone app for ebook reading. Once you have this the ebook world’s your oyster!
I decide on “Life of Pi” by Yann Martel. The electronic blurb states, “One boy, one boat, one tiger”. 354 electronic pages later, 211 spent on a life boat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, I’m rating my number one book.
A story of such imagination and deep sentiment I would read it as a how to novel when perceiving a time of hardship. Compared to The Hobbit which takes you on an adventure through various locations meeting various, dwarves, elves, goblins and dragons, Life of Pi is spent mostly in one location, the Pacific Ocean and with one animal, Richard Parker a Bengal tiger.
16 year old Piscine Patel finds himself on a sinking ship with a cargo full of zoo animals. Later to find himself on a lifeboat with a small cargo consisting of a Bengal tiger for the duration of the trip and a short lived cargo of a hyena, zebra and orang-utan.
The story unravels to leave you questioning the true events of the time spent at sea and whether the hyena, Richard Parker and all were nothing but a boy’s terrific defence mechanism against a gruesome reality of human cannibalism and other such horrific events.
Leaving you ultimately outwitted by a 16 year old boy who asks the question; what is it you have really perceived and does it really matter if you choose to warp those perceptions to make life more manageable?