The Top Reasons to Read John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany

  • Irving writes the end of his novels first.
  • Irving wrote the first sentence in A Prayer for Owen Meany about a year later.
  • The first sentence in the novel is Irving’s favorite.
  • Owen Meany was inspired by Irving’s childhood friend, Russell, who died as an adult in the Vietnam War.
  • A Prayer for Owen Meany pays homages to other novels.
  • During a 2006 charity event, Irving confessed to plagiarizing himself (referencing his novel, The Cider House Rules).
  • The character, Hester, resembles another of Irving’s characters in The Cider House Rules.
  • Due to similarities between John Wheelwright and John Irving, many thought the character was autobiographical.



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Jeffrey Previte

Jeffrey Previte

An entrepreneur with more than three decades of executive-level experience, Jeffrey Previte is the co-owner of Previte Olive Oil.