Far too much digital ink (with over 1800 reviews at amazon.com) has been spent on criticism and analysis fo this book. As a statement about religion, the book is deeply flawed. As a statement about our need to construct stories to deal with the terrible deeds we need to do to survive it endures well.
As a deconstructionist novel, Mr. Martel will love my reaction to his polemic:
What the author intends is irrelevant. What the books says is irrelevant. All that matters is my point of view. And my point of view is that it is a wonderful tale.