A Prayer for Owen Meany

A Prayer for Owen Meany

A Novel

Book Club Kit - 2009
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"I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice--not because of his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother's death, but because he was the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany."

In the summer of 1953, two eleven-year-old boys--best friends--are playing in a Little League baseball game in Gravesend, New Hampshire. One of the boys hits a foul ball that kills the other boy's mother. The boy who hits the ball doesn't believe in accidents; Owen Meany believes he is God's instrument. What happens to Owen, after that 1953 foul ball, is extraordinary and terrifying.

Publisher: Toronto, Ontario :, Vintage Canada,, 2009.
Edition: Book Club Kit.
Copyright Date: ©1989
ISBN: 9780676974034
Characteristics: x, 635 pages ;,21 cm.


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Medicine Hat Public Library Kit contains 6 books.


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Jun 17, 2019

This isbn 9780688077082 is paperback version; small print, many many pages. Hardcover format would be easier to read.

ArapahoeAnnaL Apr 26, 2019

I loved this book for its characters, plot, and hilarious scenes (which had me laughing out loud). The deeper themes of religious faith vs. doubt and free will vs. predestination were intriguing. Owen Meany's outrage at political deceit in the last half of the 20th century may ring true for citizens today.

Mar 22, 2019

In almost 70 years of reading one of the absolute best!!!!! Kristi & Abby Tabby

Sep 16, 2018

This is THE great American novel. Funny, touching, and completely heart-breaking. I have purchased multiple copies of this book to give to many of my closest friends. It is the only one that I have done that.

ArapahoeJillK Sep 13, 2018

Authentic characters live in this richly textured story which begins in a small New Hampshire town in the 1960s. John Irving's use of ALL CAPS to symbolize Owen's unique voice is inspired.

Aug 08, 2018

This may be the best American novel ever written.

Jul 18, 2018

This is quite a tale. You could also call it The Gospel of Owen Meany. He truly was a picture of Christ, especially in death. It reminded me of Forrest Gump in some ways, too. I decided to read this book after seeing it on the Great American Reads list and having it recommended by a friend. Even though it is very long, it is worth the journey. I can just imagine Owen Meany and his voice perpetually at a screech. The narrator of the story is Owen's best friend Johnny Wheelwright. This is a tale of friendship, forgiveness and self-sacrifice told from the perspective of the late 80's, but focused on a fifteen-year span from 1953 to 1968. Definitely worthy of making the list.


Aug 15, 2017

Fantastic tale! The comedy -drama is full of surprises and humour. The plot is incredibly well crafted and leads to a stunning climax although clues have been left along the journey. Very gripping-really enjoyed it -read it within a week.

Apr 13, 2017

John Irving's most well-known novel, A Prayer For Owen Meany, was an international bestseller when it was published in 1989. The protagonist's - Catholic school teacher John Wheelwright's - memories of his adolescent best friend, Owen Meany, a boy who suffers from dwarfism and believes that he is God's instrument, takes full centre of the book. John Irving is a fantastic writer: his comic, detailed, and intelligent prose is vast in scope and manages to find humour in even the darkest scenarios. The character of Owen Meany is by far one of the most complex, original characters I have ever read in a novel, and is a character that I will remember for a very long time.
- @reallylikesmusicals of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

Mar 30, 2017

I loved this book - so powerful! Irving is a brilliant story teller, perfectly structuring the complex themes of friendship, religion, politics & principles, and fate vs free will. His language and imagery is exquisitely rich; his vividly detailed characters and scenarios prove him a master of that fundamental writing advice: show by example – don’t tell. Irving reveals to us in tiny sneak-peeks what is coming without revealing the whole picture until the very end. At the end of the book I felt a little like the young narrator when he says about his dead mother: "When someone you love dies unexpectedly, you don’t lose her all at once; you lose her in little pieces over a long time." (p.135). I marvelled at Irving’s insight into humanity. This book is simultaneously filled with hilarity and pathos, and will become one of my all time favourites.

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Sep 21, 2013

"Faith takes practice," said Owen Meany.

Sep 18, 2013

"...good friends are nothing to each other if they are not supportive."

Jan 17, 2009

I could have told her that it was only our illusion that Owen Mean weighed 'nothing at all.' We were only children--we are only children-- I could have told her. What did we know about Owen? What did we truly know? We had the impression that everything was a game-- we thought we made everything up as we went along. When we were children,we had the impression that almost eveything was just for fun-- no harm intended, no damage done. When we held Owen Meany above our heads, when we passed him back and forth-- so effortlessly-- we believed that Owen weighed nothing at all. We did not realize that there were forces beyond our play. Now I know they were the forces that contributed to our illusion of Owen's weightlessness; they were the forces we didn't have faith to feel, they were the forces we failed to believe in-- and they were also the lifting up Owen Meany, taking him out of our hands. O God-- please give him back! I shall keep on asking You.

Jan 17, 2009

By the time she came back, of course, we'd forgotten everything about whatever 'it' was-- because as soon as she left the room, we would fool around with a frenzy. Because being alone with our thoughts was no fun, we would pick up Owen Meany and pass him back and forth, overhead. We managed this while remaining seeted in our chairs- that was the challenge of the game. Someone-- I forgot who started it--would get up, seize Owen, sit back down with him, pass him to the next person, who would pass him on and so forth. The girls were included in this game; some of the girls were the most enthusiastic about it. Everyone could lift up Owen. We were very careful; we never dropped him. His shirt might become a litle rumpled. His necktie was so long, Owen tucked it in his trousers--or else it would have hung to his knees-- and his necktie often cam untucked; sometimes his change would fall out (in our faces). We always gave him his money back.

Jan 17, 2009

In Sunday school, we developed a form of enterainment based on abusing Owen Meany, who was so small that not only did his feet not touch the floor when he sat in his chair-- his knees did not extend to the edge of his seat: therefore, his legs stuck out straight, like the legs of a doll. It was as if Owen Meany had been born without realistic joints

Jan 12, 2009

I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice-- not because of his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother's death, but because he is the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany.

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Aug 01, 2016

Pixieminion thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


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Aug 01, 2016

This book is about Owen from the perspective of John, the narrator. They are best friends and the book takes us through their lives together. Early in the book, Owen hits the baseball that kills John's mother, whom they both love dearly. There is also the mystery of who John's father is as well as what will happen to Owen Meany (it becomes clear as you read that Owen has some kind of purpose). Overall, this book is more about faith (in the world, god, each other, etc.) than anything else. It will make you question the world around you as well as your place in it.


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