Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Themes

Owen and John are quite a duo, aren't they? John seems so normal, and Owen seems so, well, strange, and yet they complement one another so well. Their friendship is central to A Prayer for Owen Meany. They are such good friends that they can both get over the fact that Owen is responsible for the death of John's mother. Of course, without their friendship, we wouldn't have much of a story, but that seems to be beside the point. Owen and John are truly invested in one another. Owen helps John figure out his identity, and he also saves his life by keeping him out of Vietnam. John, likewise, plays a key role in helping Owen to fulfill his destiny. These two are there for each other through thick and thin.

Questions About Friendship

  1. Why do you think Owen and John are able to keep Tabby's death from harming their friendship? Would you be able to do the same thing if you were in John shoes?
  2. We encounter a lot of other kids in the novel, but John and Owen don't seem to have any other friends besides one another. Why do you think that is the case?
  3. Is John more protective of Owen, or is Owen more protective of John? Justify your answer.
  4. How is the friendship between Lydia and Harriet similar to the relationship between Owen and John? How is it different?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Owen is in charge of his friendship with Johnny.

Johnny and the Wheelwrights protect Owen.

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