In a similar vein as Gabriel Garcia Marquez, I was on the fence about John Irving, though swayed a bit more in his favor. The World According to Garp is one of my favorite books of all time, but I have tried to read Ciderhouse Rules three or four times and just couldn’t get in to it. I had heard amazing things bout “A Prayer for Owen Meany” and was pushed to tackle it after a friend a few states away said she was starting it soon: challenge accepted!
Owen Meany is a unique individual that touches the lives of many, none more than his best friend Johnny Wheelright. This story is about their friendship, their faith, and where the combination of both led them in their lives. Narrated by Johnny we follow him both through his childhood and to the present where he is living out his life in the 1980s in Canada.
I should say that I am terrible at book reviews because I hate to give anything away. Personally I love reading a book knowing as little as possible, so I try to do the same for others.
This novel is simply amazing. I finished reading it about five minutes ago and I really am sort of at a loss for words. I read a few novels lately that really annoyed me with the authors’ gratuitous use of foreshadowing and confusing non-linear timelines. In Irving’s hands, these same devices are masterfully applied and you fall into the story. Though you see the writing on the wall early on, it’s less about the destination as it is the journey. I’m not usually one for doing so, but I have many pages of this book earmarked because I was so often moved by a phrase or an idea. Irving is truly a master and I recommend this book wholeheartedly to anyone looking for a good read.