John Irving, the modern American novelist, has written thirteen novels over the course of his prolific career, nine of which have been international bestsellers.  The World According to Garp, which won the National Book Award in 1980, was John Irving’s fourth novel and his first international bestseller.

Worldwide, the Irving novel most often called “an American classic” is A Prayer for Owen Meany (1989)—the portrayal of an enduring friendship at the time when the Vietnam War had its most divisive effect on the United States.