Living to Die
Thoroughly leading up until the climactic ending in A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving explains to his readers just how important it is to Owen Meany to fulfill his duties and obligations to God. Like a hobbit traveling to Mt. Doom in Mordor, he is determined and dedicated more than anyone in the novel to achieve his goals, despite his responsibilities and, what should be, his major concerns in his life. Owen completely envelopes himself in the fact that he is an instrument used by God, and doesn’t even stop to think to realize and remember his loved ones, whom are Hester, his love struck girlfriend, and John, his best friend who has been with him through thick and thin ever since they were children. It is bittersweet, I suppose, about the choices he ultimately ends up making until the end. On one hand he will miss out on the opportunities he can easily obtain through attending Harvard and making a life for himself with his most important people by his side (Hester and John); on the other hand, however, by choosing to follow God’s calling for his life, he will conclusively act upon the happening that impacts the ending of the novel altogether.
Owen, as one finds out throughout the novel, is excessively brilliant, surpassing the intelligence of other people his age by far. Tabitha Wheelwright acknowledges this special gift in Owen insisting that he attend Gravesend Academy, where his brilliance be put to good use. It turns out that it was, for Owen ends up being the best student at the Academy, which almost guarantees him the ability to attend Harvard to now receive the best college education possible, but certain setbacks keep him from doing so. His careless mistake of getting caught making fake IDs for other students opens the door for the principle to seize at the opportunity to expel Owen, which severely hurts his chances to get into any worthwhile colleges. But with this, Owen understands that his purpose must lie elsewhere, because...
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