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Reviews of World According to Garp, the (1978)

Review by rinabeana (2006-07-26)
I read this for a book club, and probably wouldn't have read it otherwise. The only thing I knew about it was that it was made into a film starring Robin Williams, so I (incorrectly) assumed it was mostly comedic in nature. I couldn't have been more wrong. Though Irving (whose other books I've not read) has a great writing style and inserted many amusing comments and stories in the book, the overall feel is decidedly not comedic. I think the best way to describe both Garp and his mother Jenny (and many of the other characters for that matter) is odd. They certainly have some unconventional ideas and do some really weird things! However, flawed as they are, many of them are likable, especially Garp, though he does some really dumb and thoughtless things. I found myself quite upset when I got to the end of the book, and thus, the end of his life. One of the things I liked best about the book was how Irving included passages or entire stories written by Garp and Jenny in the text. It made them seem that much more real. I enjoyed reading this book and I definitely recommend it!

Review by mkcompton (2006-03-18)
A fantastically comic and tragically honest look into the life of the son of a feminist. The journey of his life from his unique conception to his untimely death is often funny, sometimes tear jerking, and always interesting. This book is certainly a page turner. I needed to know what was to come in the next phase of this bizarre character's life.
Written in such a unique style which is worth almost as much as the story itself. This book is certainly among my favorites and will always be recommended whenever someone asks for a good read.

Review by rwilmes (2004-11-30)
This novel shows us the epic life journey of T.S. Garp from conception to death. His story is paralleled by the story of his mother and her uncanny life. The World According to Garp is a fantastic book that is tragic, suspenseful, dramatic, and damned comic. This book is probably in my top 5 of all books I've read (yes, I've read more than 5.) I'm partial to comedy anyway, but I believe this book has quite a bit to offer any read with a desire to lose themselves in an unbelievable, yet too believable world--Garp's world. You will leave this circa 600 page book wishing it would keep going--possibly forever.




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