John Irving competed as a wrestler for twenty years. His novels include The World According to GarpThe Cider House RulesA Prayer for Owen Meany, and In One Person. His fourteenth novel, Avenue of Mysteries, was published in fall 2015. He lives in Toronto.


Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

The best ending is not a surprise; it is both inevitable and irrefutably stated. There’s no argument about it being the only thing that could have (would have, should have) happened. And in order for an ending to feel that . . .

Cat without Eyes

Here is the first sentence of my autobiographical essay “Trying to Save Piggy Sneed,” which was originally published in the New York Times Book Review of August 22, 1982. I was forty. I wrote: “This is a memoir, but please . . .
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