The greatest temptation in the history of mankind is to read Life of Pi as an allegory. It's so easy, right? Each surviving animal matches up with a human survivor. (Martel offers us the blueprint in the second-to-last chapter.) You could also see Richard Parker as God. Pi's ordeal on the Pacific could be viewed as a spiritual journey. And what about the algae island with human teeth hidden in sacs of leaves? Doesn't that have to symbolize something? Isn't this book one big allegory? Don't hate us, but we're going to say, "Well, yes and no."