New York: William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1989. 1st Edition. Large octavo, publisher's gray cloth over slate blue paper-covered boards, spine stamped silver, slate endpapers, original illustrated dust jacket.
"Your memory is a monster; you forget—it doesn't. It simply files things away. It keeps things for you, or hides things from you—and summons them to your recall with a will of its own. You think you have a memory, but it has you." Stated first edition of acclaimed American writer John Irving's seventh novel. The narrative follows protagonist John Wheelwright and his best friend Owen Meany, a dwarf-like boy who believes himself to be "God’s instrument," as they grow up together in a small suburban town in New Hampshire in the 1950s and 60s. Interweaving three disparate yet equally outlandish storylines—John's past, present, and Owen's life—in his characteristically engaging style, Irving explores themes of faith, doubt, justice, and fate. Since its publication Owen Meany has become something of a cult classic. Several references to the novel have appeared in contemporary culture, and multiple film, television, and theatrical adaptations have been made or attempted, including the 1998 feature film Simon Birch. The novel is also an homage to Irving's greatest literary influence, Günter Grass's The Tin Drum. The main characters of both novels share the same initials (Owen Meany and Oskar Matzerath) as well other characteristics, including an obnoxiously shrill voice that Irving portrays using all caps when writing in Meany's voice. First printing, with complete number row to copyright page. Spine somewhat rolled, small dent to top edge of upper board, small stain to top edge of textblock; unclipped dust jacket with light creasing to spine ends. Very good. Item #1959