Tag Archive - John Irving

First Pages of Best-Selling Novels: Avenue of Mysteries

 I chose one of John Irving’s novels—Avenue of Mysteries—to examine in this week’s look at first pages. I read a lot of his books decades ago. When The World according to Garp came out, I was fascinated by his wild and imaginative way of telling a story. That style has served Irving well, as he’s had numerous best sellers, some of which have been made into films (The Cider House Rules, The Hotel New Hampshire, to name a couple).

Irving’s story topics are wide and wild. It’s challenging, to say the least, to find success as an author by writing books that break so many structural and genre rules. Many of his books are hard to define and slot into a specific genre, and this novel is no exception.

Avenue of Mysteries (2015) is categorized as contemporary fiction, which is what most (maybe all?) of his novels are labeled. But he does throw in a lot of elements of other genres into his novels. Kind of a genre stew of many flavors. Continue Reading…