Novel Summary Sheet ~Quartering the Text ~
Tori Armstrong Quarter #3
Life of Pi
1. Skeletal Plot
a) Pi tells the story of how Richard Parker was captured and how he got his name
b) Pi is certain the tiger is going to kill him and starts to calm down, he is helpless
c) Pi discovers an emergency supply kit with rations and water and sees hope
d) Once Richard Parker kills the hyena Pi decides that he needs a life raft away from the tiger to survive
e) Pi's idea fails when he realizes Bengal tigers can drink saline water and swim
f) Richard Parker makes a sound Pi recognizes as an expression of harmless intentions and establishes his alpha status
g) Pi returns to the boat and finds a device that changes salt water to fresh water
h) Pi tries to fish but is saved when a school of flying fish flail into the boat
i)Having been a vegetarian most his life, Pi cries when he breaks down and breaks a fish's neck to each for dinner
j) Pi realizes it's been a week since the ship has sunk
Conflict or “tension” eg person vs person, person vs animal, or (internal) person vs self; Is this important to the novel’s theme or purpose? Circle one and explain: Yes
At first Pi is faced with trying not to be killed by the tiger, Richard Parker. Once he's made his raft to keep safe, he realizes the tiger is capable of swimming to Pi to eat him. Richard Parker is also able to survive off drinking the saline water. Pi gives in and retreats to the boat once he realizes Richard Parker does not want to hurt him. That particular conflict is resolved, but he's still trying to survive fighting against nature.
The setting is the same as the last quarter, Pi remains stranded in a life boat in the middle of the ocean. He's made a mast for his little boat to try and attract attention, he's made his own little raft, he's surviving off rations and little water. Pi is stranded in the middle of nowhere with what looks like no help what so ever so far.
In this quarter we get to know Richard Parker more as a character rather than as an antagonist. Richard Parker means no harm to Pi, they've each marked their territory in urine and established boundaries. We get to see another side of Pi, the side of which his survival instincts kick in. We see him change from being a vegetarian and loving all creatures to having to kill a fish with his bare hand merely to try and last through the night. He seems to be no stranger to survival, he knows how to build his own raft to try and escape Richard Parker and he's well aware of how to use the twelve solar stills. He seems to be a well rounded person let alone well rounded character.
4. Point Of View
The point of view has stayed first person through out this quarter. The writer probably chose that just to give us an inside look into Pi's thoughts and to understand what he thinks and believes. We get to see him change through his eyes and develop our own opinion of why he would do a certain thing.
- Notables on writer's style and structure
a) are there similes or metaphors?
“nestles in your memory like a gangrene”
b) visual or other imagery?
“the sky cleared and the waves seemed to clear with the clouds”
c)Is there unusual vocabulary or diction?
“A panther was terrorizing the Khulna district of Bangladesh, just outside the Sundarbans”
d) is the novel structured with a particular idea?
“Look: Christ on the cross died of suffocation, but His only complaint was of thirst”
e) is there dialogue?
“I’m going to die”
Record themes related to your novel:
6. Personal Response to this quarter.
This quarter is not a universal experience, it is more like a movie like “Cast Away.” It is fairly unrealistic, Pi is on his own in the middle of the ocean, stuck in a boat with a tiger. I did enjoy the relationship Pi and Richard Parker developed even though I could not relate to it, it was sweet.