June's Actual Book!
The book that Jangles and I have selected for June is Life of Pi by Yann Martel. It's a fairly common and quite popular book so people should be able to get it.
Nota bene - we are switching to a new discussion format, in light of the recent semi-closing of the book club. It is as follows: this book is "June's" book because we are posting it at the beginning of June - however, we would like to have active discussion up until the end of JULY. People are welcome to comment on Life of Pi (or previous books) after July, but hopefully spreading the main conversation over the months of both June and July will allow people a more comfortable stretch of time to read the book and talk about it.
Amazon's summary of the book is as follows (y'all can search for it on your own time):
A fabulous romp through an imagination by turns ecstatic, cunning, despairing and resilient, this novel is an impressive achievement: "a story that will make you believe in God," as one character says. The peripatetic Pi (ne the much-taunted Piscine) Patel spends a beguiling boyhood in Pondicherry, India, as the son of a zookeeper. Growing up beside the wild beasts, Pi gathers an encyclopedic knowledge of the animal world. His curious mind also makes the leap from his native Hinduism to Christianity and Islam, all three of which he practices with joyous abandon.
In his 16th year, Pi sets sail with his family and some of their menagerie to start a new life in Canada. Halfway to Midway Island, the ship sinks into the Pacific, leaving Pi stranded on a life raft with a hyena, an orangutan, an injured zebra and a 450-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. After the beast dispatches the others, Pi is left to survive for 227 days with his large feline companion on the 26-foot-long raft, using all his knowledge, wits and faith to keep himself alive.
The scenes flow together effortlessly, and the sharp observations of the young narrator keep the tale brisk and engaging. Martel's potentially unbelievable plot line soon demolishes the reader's defenses, cleverly set up by events of young Pi's life that almost naturally lead to his biggest ordeal. This richly patterned work, Martel's second novel, won Canada's 2001 Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction. In it, Martel displays the clever voice and tremendous storytelling skills of an emerging master.