A Prayer for Owen Meany – Book 1

Tonight I finished reading “A Prayer for Owen Meany” by John Irving.

This book took me a while to read, almost a week, but it was well worth it.  It’s interesting, because I started this blog and at the same time, I immediately wanted to get my blog “out there.”  I created a Twitter account, which proceeded to make me feel old since I had no idea how to use Twitter at first, and also began to suck up my time because now I HAVE to know what Melissa Gorga from RHONJ is doing at all times.  Needless to say, I think that my Twitter account and my Tweets took some reading time away from me this week (although most were book related!).

On to the book itself. . . “A Prayer for Owen Meany” is a book that has been popular with others, and I thought it would be a great book to start off my 100 book journey.

“A Prayer for Owen Meany” is a fabulous book about John and Owen’s friendship, taking place in the 50’s and 60’s in New Hampshire, from the boys’ childhood into adulthood.  John Wheelwright is a wealthy, well-connected boy in town who becomes friends with Owen Meany, a tiny boy with a distinctly unique voice and some unusual parents.  The story is told by John as an adult later in life, looking back on his experiences in Gravesend, New Hampshire, experiences that center on Owen’s uniqueness.  Throughout the book, Owen and John stick together, exploring, living their lives, and coming to terms with some potentially religious experiences.  Owen is charismatic and fully believes that he is “God’s instrument,” put on Earth to do some extraordinary things.

The main question is, does Owen have a spiritual gift?  It’s worth reading this book to find out what you believe about Owen.

Don’t skip this book based on your religious preferences.  It’s a good read no matter what your feelings are on the subject, and it’s a great story about Owen and John’s friendship, and John’s life experiences.

On a side note, “A Prayer for Owen Meany” is the second book I read recently that mentioned the Thomas Hardy classic, “Tess of the d’Ubervilles.”

Unfortunately, the other book that mentioned Tess was from the Fifty Shades series (which I regret that I even began to read, but do not regret stopping mid-series).  The multiple references to Tess inspires me to read “Tess of the d’Ubervilles” soon.  I’m looking forward to adding it to my list since I’ve heard so many references to it lately.  Has anyone read it?  What do you think of it?


4 thoughts on “A Prayer for Owen Meany – Book 1

  1. I loved the meandering storytelling, weaving through memories of different eras, but it did feel just a little drawn out for my tastes.

    Great start, and great project, by the way! Do you have a list you’re working from or are you just going to see where the reading mood takes you?


    • Christine,

      Thanks for checking out my blog! I appreciate the support! It’s interesting that you made that observation about the meandering storytelling, because the only thing I disliked about the book was when, as an adult, John would rant about America. I couldn’t wait to get back to his life when he was younger, with Owen.

      I don’t have a “list” except for my crazy long list of what I want to read (which consists of the list from “1001 Books to Read Before You Die” as well as other recommended books from family and friends. I also am open to recommendations, and I am going to try to weave in the recommendations within the book list I have as well. Have you read anything good lately to recommend?

      By the way, I like your website! I read because it’s one way to improve myself, and my brain!


  2. I loved this book (The World According to Garp is still my favorite Irving, though). While John’s rants about the US slowed the book down, I think it was important to understand that John blamed the country for Owen’s death. I also think he knew that Owen would have made a huge deal out of those current events and the politics, so John was getting offended for him.

    Great book–Irving is a masterful storyteller.


    • Good point about John’s frustrations with the U.S. I agree that he was preoccupied with the U.S. and its faults because of Owen, Owen’s feelings on politics and the world, and of course because of Owen’s death. I haven’t read “The World According to Garp” but I’ll definitely add it to my book list! Thanks for reading!


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