Saturday, June 23

Owen Meany's Book Club

What am I missing?

At some point Tara and I talked about important books and she mentioned Prayer for Owen Meany. I started to read it, got about 50 pages and was done. I didn't care about anything or anybody in the book. Several months later I tried again. I struggled with those first 50 or so again but once I made it past that I sailed through the book but at the end I still didn't care. Throughout the reading of it people would comment on how great it was and how much they enjoyed it. All I wanted to know was, how and when Owen was gonna die.

I was looking at Zen Habits' discussion of high impact books and several commentors have mentioned Owen Meany as a book that had a profound impact. Maybe if I had been at a spiritual crossroads or less sure about my spiritual state, maybe if I had been younger. I don't know but it just didn't mean much for me.

The books on my list (closer to chronological than anything):

The Giving Tree (Shel Silverstein) I actually remember reading this when I was a kid and I also remember working the story over and over trying to figure out what it meant.

Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee (Dee Brown) As a child and even as a teen I was utterly infatuated with Great Plain natives. I was (am) also an idealist so I saw them as heroes and victims. This book provided evidence of all of that. This is probably the book that cemented me as a liberal.

The Sound and the Fury (William Faulkner) I'm still not completely sure what this book did to me. I think the main thing was that it showed to me that there are no boundaries to how a book is written. I think I also like trying to figure out what the hell is going on.
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