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Yann Martel Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Self (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
Life of Pi (2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
Beatrice and Virgil (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The High Mountains of Portugal (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Short Story Collections

The Facts Behind the Helsinki Roccamatios (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

What is Stephen Harper Reading? (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
101 Letters to a Prime Minister (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

World renowned Canadian author Yann Martel is a global phenomena with his much beloved and highly unique take on fiction and the art storytelling, taking on such universal themes as life, love, loss and dealing with tragedy. Known for undertaking extremely difficult subject with a sense of brevity and light-hearted intelligence that doesn’t detract from his subjects, he has managed to win a number of awards, including the highly sought after Man Booker Prize for his 2001 novel ‘Life of Pi’. Reaching the top of various best-seller lists all across the globe, he’s a publishing sensation in his own right, with his ability to make the profound easily accessible and available for everyone.

Early and Personal Life

Born in Salamanca, Spain, on the 25th of June, 1963, Yann Martel was the son of French-speaking Quebecers, with his father being a Canadian diplomat for the government stationed in Spain, whilst his mother was a literary translator. This provided him with the background that would help begin to sow the seeds of what was to be his adult literary career as a respected and highly influential writer. Raised in a number of different countries from France to Mexico, Costa Rica, Alaska and Canada, he soaked in a whole wide range of experiences growing up, all of it providing ideal material for his future stories.

Attending Trinity College School as an adolescent in Port Hope, Ontario, he then graduated before going on to study at Trent University in Peterborough, also in Ontario, where he studied philosophy as his subject, something that would prepare him well for his novels to follow. He then spent thirteen months abroad in India visiting mosques, temples, churches and, notably, zoos, something which was to recur elsewhere in his literature later on forming a major part of the narrative. It was during this time, though, that he managed to gain himself a vast wealth of experience to aid him in his writing, creating new material in the process.

Spending two years immersed in religious texts following this, he got to grips with both their structure and their, coming to understand their their themes and ideas, something which he could later apply on a universal level to his work. Reading a vast array of castaway stories as well, he came to a greater understanding of what his first novel was going to be about and how it was going to operate structurally and thematically. This was to then lead him to his first novel ‘Life of Pi’ which he wrote and then published in 2001, setting himself up as a major figure within the industry.

He now lives with the British author Alice Kuipers in Saskatoon, Canada, along with their three young children. With the both of them continuing to research and write for a living, he has always got something new waiting on the horizon. As big screen adaptations of his work are created with many of stories being given the cinematic treatment by such acclaimed directors as Ang Lee, he shows no signs of stopping anytime soon either.

Writing Career

His first work of fiction was published in 1993, which was ‘Seven Stories’, a collection of stories exactly as the title states. He then took some time away to work on his first full length novel, which was to be the famous and highly acclaimed ‘Life of Pi’, which was released in 2001. Gaining a huge amount of praise for his work he was then set to be a world renowned writer of great repute.

Not only winning the prestigious Man Booker Prize for his debut, he has also had many of his books adapted for the cinema as well. Not only that, but he also had a huge amount of commercial success as well, reaching the top of the best-seller lists on numerous occasions. With his writing career growing from strength-to-strength, along with his academic achievements as well having lectured at various high-ranking establishments, he’s appears to have a lot of stories left to tell.

Life of Pi

Initially published in September in 2001, this was to be the debut novel of Yann Martel marking his first step into the world of fiction. Utilizing a lot of the previous research he’d done into spirituality and world religions, it manages to capture the essence of many of their themes running throughout. Working essentially as an allegory, it plays upon the nature of storytelling and how fiction operates alongside the larger truths.

Following the eponymous young boy Piscine Molitor ‘Pi’ Patel, it tells of his life growing up in a zoo, before going away on an ocean voyage. It is here that his ship crashes and he must spend 227 days at see on the small lifeboat with one of the deadliest predators known to man; a Bengal tiger. The tiger itself comes from the zoo and is named Richard Parker and it is up to Pi to keep himself alive and out of harm’s way. How will the tiger ever refrain from eating him? Can he survive the voyage? What will become of the life of Pi?

Beatrice and Virgil

Originally published on the 6th of April, 2010, this was the release of the third novel from the writer Yann Martel. Taking on a far heavier subject this time, it manages to tackle the horrors of the Holocaust and the tragedy that unfolded there. With strong themes and subjects it never shies away from getting to the heart and truth of the matter, in a fairly visceral yet conclusive manner.

Featuring the animal allegory once again, something which Martel has now become famous for, it tells of a donkey and howler monkey named Beatrice and Virgil. Undertaking a journey together, something which Henry will learn about after receiving a letter from an elderly taxidermist. Combining spirituality, art and the essence of life and truth once more, it deals with difficult subject matter in the stylistic manner that Martel is known for. Dealing with a number of different strands at once, the reader is ultimately forced to solve the puzzle and confront the truth behind both Beatrice and Virgil.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Yann Martel

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