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The World According to Garp


The World According to Garp

Garp was John Irving's break-through novel ten years after his first book, SETTING FREE THE BEARS was published in 1968. In the interim he produced two other novels, THE 158-POUND MARRIAGE and THE WATER-METHOD MAN. All three were successful to a smaller audience, and certainly successful enough for a new publisher, E. F. Dutton, to take a serious look at the manuscript for what would become a classic.Dutton's faith was awarded with a smash bestseller that was made into an award winning motion picture in 1982, earning Oscar nominations for its co-stars, John Lithgow and Glenn Close, and critical acclaim for Robin Williams in one of his earliest starring roles.

Irving novels are nearly impossible to explain because of the plot complexities and unusual characters, and GARP --- a story about an aspriring young writer who lives with his mother Jenny, a feminist far ahead of her time --- is no exception. People live and die in bizarre and wondrous ways, perform acts of love and lust, and are besieged with self-doubt in ways that on one hand resonate with our own reality, yet are so far beyond our experience as to baffle and amaze.

Perhaps that is what John Irving does best --- create a fictional world populated with characters with whom we identify and commiserate, love and hate, deplore and admire.THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GARP has earned a permanent place in American letters and is studied in American Literature classes throughout the country.

Reviewed by Roz Shea on January 24, 2011

The World According to Garp
by John Irving

  • Publication Date: June 23, 1997
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • ISBN-10: 0345418018
  • ISBN-13: 9780345418012