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A Prayer for Owen Meany Audiobook

A Prayer for Owen Meany

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Publisher's Summary

Of all of John Irving's books, this is the one that lends itself best to audio. In print, Owen Meany's dialogue is set in capital letters; for this production, Irving himself selected Joe Barrett to deliver Meany's difficult voice as intended.

In the summer of 1953, two 11-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.

As an added bonus, when you purchase our Audible Modern Vanguard production of John Irvin's book, you'll also get an exclusive Jim Atlas interview that begins when the audiobook ends.

Why we think it’s a great listen: For 20 years, John Irving believed that his ambitious novel could never be adequately executed in audio – and then he met narrator Joe Barrett.... In the summer of 1953, two 11-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.


This production is part of our Audible Modern Vanguard line, a collection of important works from groundbreaking authors.

©1989 Garp Enterprises Ltd; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“John Irving, who writes novels in the unglamorous but effective way Babe Ruth used to hit home runs, deserves a medal not only for writing this book but for the way he has written it. . . . A Prayer for Owen Meany is a rare creation in the somehow exhausted world of late twentieth-century fiction—it is an amazingly brave piece of work . . . so extraordinary, so original, and so enriching. . . . Readers will come to the end feeling sorry to leave [this] richly textured and carefully wrought world.” (Stephen King)

"Roomy, intelligent, exhilarating, and darkly comic...Dickensian in scope....Quite stunning and very ambitious." (Los Angeles Times Book Review)

"John Irving is an abundantly and even joyfully talented storyteller." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (6009 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Adrian S. Armstrong 03-12-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent storytelling"

    This was a great story. It was long but worth the credit! I couldn't wait to find our what would happen

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Los Angeles, CA, United States 03-10-15
    Chris Los Angeles, CA, United States 03-10-15 Member Since 2002
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    "Worth Hearing"
    What did you like best about A Prayer for Owen Meany? What did you like least?

    It's a love story that rings true. It gives a true sense of coming of age, of the things we wish we could change in our lives or characters and can't. It's an interesting look at faith.


    If you’ve listened to books by John Irving before, how does this one compare?

    I started, but didn't finish reading, not listening to, "The World According to Garp." I found it vulgar without being enlightening.Having listened to this, I'm wondering whether Irving is best read aloud. Journalists have an expression, that a story should sing. This one does pretty well. It's not a masterpiece, but it's a good listen.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Probably either the hide-and-seek scene in the beginning, or the interactions with the disappointed ROTC instructor at the end and the horrid family. Both are true to life.


    Do you think A Prayer for Owen Meany needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No. He's said what there is to say here.


    Any additional comments?

    This book made it a little more likely that I'll try Garp again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mrsgrz CA 02-19-15
    mrsgrz CA 02-19-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Good performance and story"

    Very long book. Sometimes lost track of story while listening. Entertaining and very thought provoking. Narrator does great job! Worth a listen

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Moreau Missouri 02-19-15
    S. Moreau Missouri 02-19-15 Member Since 2014

    SueQue

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    "Couldn't read it"

    I tried to read this novel but just couldn't get through it. I wanted to though so finally I got the audio version. It was so worth the money and time. The performance really was perfect. I now am encouraged to read more from Irving...and Dickens...and Hardy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lyndie Lilydale, Australia 02-18-15
    Lyndie Lilydale, Australia 02-18-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Remarkable"

    I will never forget this book. Thoroughly enjoyed my first experience listening to John Irving's book. I laughed. I cried.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    soccer mom Orange, Ca 02-10-15
    soccer mom Orange, Ca 02-10-15
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    "incredible"

    I absolutely loved this story. everything about the story had mesmerized. I never anti updated the ending. I highly recommend this listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vwbh 02-07-15
    Vwbh 02-07-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A major piece in my life"

    So much of my own life and experience came back to me when reading this book. I am all most worshipful of the story and how John Irving drew up on real events to make a masterpiece describing a turbulent time in history of the US. I repeatedly replay the portions that I thought were meaningful. And would do it again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ZiggyZ 02-06-15
    ZiggyZ 02-06-15
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    "A wonderful book and a wonderful narration"

    I read A Prayer for Owen Meany many years ago, it must have been shortly after it was first published. What an experience, coming back to it after all this time, especially because I was born around the same time as Johnny and Owen and remember well my feelings about events of the times. It is a deep and wonderful story that everyone should read but especially liberal baby boomers.

    Joe Barrett does an amazing job with an extremely challenging set of characters. He captures Owen's weird voice probably as well as anyone could (and if he captured it any better no one would be able to stand to listen!) and also handles singing (male and female voices) and everything else.

    This audiobook has been a real joy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    b 02-01-15
    b 02-01-15
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    "excellent"
    Would you listen to A Prayer for Owen Meany again? Why?

    probably not
    only because its so long
    if there was a long trip
    then yes
    maybe


    Any additional comments?

    its very long
    a few times
    i thought
    this is too long
    but immediately after that thought
    i still wanted to listen

    the narrator did a wonderful
    very enjoyable job

    its worth hearing

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Theresa J Keynton 01-26-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Wonderful, very simply WONDERFUL."
    Any additional comments?

    I loved the story, writing, and narration. This was a really wonderful audio book. I really loved everything about it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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