Life of Pi Study Guide

Life of Pi

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

Life of Pi by Yann Martel tells the story of a young man named Pi Patel, whose family owns a zoo in India. They decide to move to Canada and transport their zoo, but the ship they were sailing across the Atlantic encounters a storm and sinks. Pi is the only survivor, as he finds himself on a lifeboat with a hyena, a zebra, an orangutan, and Bengal tiger he names Richard Parker.

Pi comes closer and closer to the boat on the oar and decides that if Richard Parker is beneath the tarpaulin, he will not come out with Pi out of sight. Pi comes aboard and comments on how amazing the zebra looks, wondering why it hasn’t been eaten yet. He sees yet another animal aboard too, a spotted hyena. He cynically thinks that the crewmembers might have tossed him overboard to get rid of the hyena and save themselves. He assumes the tiger fell overboard because there is no way a tiger and a hyena could exist together.

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