Friday, January 27, 2006

One Hundred Words About Self

A Book Review

Self by Yann Martel

Self is very easy to read. It’s a compelling story. It’s part autobiography, part fiction, and it conveys a vivid experience of adolescent loss and discovery.

On page 89 the narrator’s parents die. On page 108 aged 18 the male narrator becomes a woman. Between 108 and 282 the narrative focuses on her developing sexual relationships with women then men. This culminates on 282 when she’s raped. On 313 she becomes a man, again. He’s a vagrant, has a number of same sex sexual encounters. The rape destroys his life.

At the end he meets Cathy. She wants a baby.

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