John In John Irving's A Prayer For Owen Meany

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People like the idea of believing in religion and a higher power because it gives people something to believe in when nothing seems to make logical sense. This is exactly the case for John in A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving. As stated at the very beginning of the book, Owen is the reason John believes in God, and it’s because it helps John make sense of everything that happens that doesn’t seem possible. The things Owen does and the things he knows prior to them happening are only possible if there is some higher power guiding Owen’s life. Thus, when Owen knows when his life is going to end and what he needs to do leading up to it, John can’t help but believe Owen has some sort of connection with God. Since Owen has a certain knowledge of the future, many of his actions foreshadow his inevitable death. Therefore, a major theme all throughout the novel which adds immensely to one’s understanding of the story is the idea of foreshadowing. Owen and John practice “the shot” constantly throughout the novel. Yet the importance of the shot isn’t obvious until Owen’s sacrifice. Once the reasoning for the incessant practicing of the shot is known, the little snippets of foreshadowing throughout the story can all be pieced together. While they are practicing the shot one day, the basketball coach makes a comment in a joking manner relating to using Owen in a game, but Owen says, “IT’S NOT FOR A GAME…” (303), implying that there is some specific purpose for the shot and Owen

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