A Prayer for Owen Meany Background

A Prayer for Owen Meany Background

A Prayer for Owen Meany is a novel written by John Winslow Irving and published in 1989. Irving’s seventh novel, A Prayer for Owen Meany recounts the life of John Wheelwright, whose best friend is named Owen Meany.

This novel was well received and was actually adapted into a film called Simon Birch, which was released in 1998. Though Simon Birch significantly changed the names and plot lines of the original novel, Irving was a great fan of the film.

John Irving is an American author and screenwriter whose works became more popular after The World According to Garp was published in 1978 and was well received internationally. Many more of his works became popular internationally and were also adapted into films.

A Prayer for Owen Meany has a dual setting in New England and in Toronto. The protagonist of the novel is named John Wheelwright, who is best friends with Owen Meany, a boy who truly believed that he was chosen by God to be an instrument of his work and creates a prophecy for himself to fulfill. Though the novel is somewhat complicated by the two separate time frames that Irving switches between: present day, where John is living in Toronto, and back in the 1950s and 60s, back in New Hampshire with Owen Meany.

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