0072 | The World According to Garp ~ John Irving

Book in Context:
The wife was making Christmas cards in the room when I finished this.

A readable social commentary with occasional witty moments, this was a book I’d seen around since I was a child.

I knew that my parents had a copy and it was curious to think that they had trodden over the same storyline as I was taking.

The book focusses a lot on sexuality and questions what that is, exploring the issue from a number of different viewpoints. This I think would be better if I read it a second time and focussed on this instead of the straightforward storyline.

I liked the fact that the book is not just a vehicle for Irving’s own writing but also his character’s writing. There was an intriguing sense of metaphysics about that.

In a similar but far less intense way to Herzog, Irving creates a man battling with all the usual angst we westerners seem to face in our brief lives. Overall though, it was good but not great. Worth reading but not a book I’d buy for anyone.

Garp’s mother, Jenny Fields, was arrested in Boston in 1942 for wounding a man in a movie theater.



she recognised the need in boys to devote themselves, mindlessly, to a repetitious physical act. It seemed to relax them.

But in the world according to Garp, we are all terminal cases.

terrible > poor > mediocre > okay > good > very good> excellent > superb

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  1. This was probably one of my favorite Irving novels. But i have to say with Irving’s style, the novel is a bit of um, predictable. Well, reserving this much acclaimed novel, for his earlier works that i got to be immune with the author’s style of writing, (his penchant for tragedy and irony) i have pre-meditated that there’s somethings going to happen about the characters. Which i am right! (of course i never predicted on what exactly will happen.) Having said that, Irving’s work are always entertaining and his use of a story behind a story makes the novel readable including his quirky characters. I like Roberta for her thinking corresponds with what she embodies and what she should act as others see her. Yeah it’s a wonderful read. ^_^

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