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Free Study Guide for Life of Pi by Yann Martel-Book Notes/Summary
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IMPORTANT / KEY FACTS SUMMARY

Title: Life of Pi

Author: Yann Martel

Date Published: 2001

Meaning of the Title: It is not ďTheĒ Life of Pi because no particular life is supported. It is about the multiplicity of life and, in the end, the reader is left to choose which of Piís ďlivesĒ to believe.

Setting: India, Canada, Pacific Ocean, Mexico

Genre: Novel

Protagonist: Piscine Molitor Patel (Pi)

Antagonist: Richard Parker; nature; internal struggle

Mood: Wondrous, spiritual, desperate, satisfied

Point of View: First person, changing from fictional author to Pi

Tense: This story is written in past tense.

Climax: When Pi tells a second story and challenges the Japanese men to choose the better story

Outcome: Both men admit the first story is better

Major Theme: The importance of telling/living the better story

Minor Themes: Science coexisting with religion; religious syncretism

STUDY QUESTIONS / QUIZ

1. Where is the author when he first hears about Piscine Patel?
a. Canada
b. India
c. home

2. Who is narrating the italicized chapters?
a. Piscine
b. Martel
c. a fictional author


3. Piscine was named after a ____.
a. pool
b. relative
c. famous Indian actor

4. What animal is the most dangerous to man?
a. elephant
b. golden agouti
c. alligator

5. What animal is the most dangerous to zoo animals?
a. elephant
b. tiger
c. man

6. Richard Parker is a ____.
a. friend of Piís
b. tiger
c. priest

7. Orange Juice is an ____.
a. monkey
b. chimpanzee
c. orangutan

8. Besides Orange Juice and Richard Parker, the two others in Piís lifeboat are a ___ and a ___.
a. zebra, hyena
b. dog, zebra
c. Golden agouti, hyena

9. What is prusten?
a. an Indian rice dish
b. a Hindu offering
c. a sound tigers make

10. Pi hesitates killing the flying fish because he is a ____.
a. vegetarian
b. wimp
c. worshipper of the fish god

11. What does Pi wish he had besides salvation?
a. a book
b. another pen
c. a beer

12. What was the name of the ship that sank?
a. Titanic II
b. Tsimtsum
c. Panama Lady

13. Pi could not see the other castaway because Pi was temporarily ____.
a. unconscious
b. blind
c. insane

14. Where did Piís lifeboat come ashore?
a. Mexico
b. India
c. Bahamas

15. Where did they end up finding Richard Parker?
a. in the jungle
b. still in the lifeboat
c. they did not find him

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