^^^I borrowed this picture from the lovely Kings Studios blog.
Not many books are life changing. They’re just not. They’re funny, sweet, emotional, relatable, even inspiring – but life changing? that’s something I’ve only been able to say about this one book, because, really, for me it is.
A Prayer for Owen Meany taught me the importance of self belief, that everyone’s life has a purpose, that you should never give up and provided some of the most insightful and truthful thoughts on faith (and doubt) which have really helped me explore my own faith.
Sometimes people ask me what my favorite book is and I get excited, because, for once, I know the answer (isn’t it usually so hard when people ask what your favorite something is?). Unfortunately then, why I try to explain why it’s my favorite, I clam up and don’t even know where to start or how to even explain the story without underselling it. It’s the only book I’ve re-read, the only book that has made me laugh out loud and the only book that has made me cry. It really is special. Owen Meany is an amazing character, I love that he is so misunderstood, quaint, annoying and imperfect (right until the very end) but still such a hero. What is most inspiring to me is that he didn’t need other people to believe in him to do the things he did, his self belief was enough.
Reading this book was such a wake up call, I feel like so much of my self belief is based on what other people think of me and not what I know about myself – I know that I need to live my life the way I want to regardless of what other people think of me, it’s a learning curve for me as I can be so passive and effected by other peoples criticism (and I feel like I’ve had a lot lately!).
Faith and doubt is a major theme in this book. For anyone put off by the religious theme please please don’t be, although I’m sure many Christians find encouragement in it, I wouldn’t say it’s a “Christian” book (if there’s such a thing??). In fact, I think it was banned for it’s stance on religion and criticism of the US government regarding the Vietnam war, so there! ;)
Go and read it – you might love it as much as I did or if not read some of the quotes from it here.