image of John Irving

John Irving

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John Irving's third and perhaps darkest novel, The 158-Pound Marriage examines the sexual revolution-era trend of "swinging" via a glimpse into the lives of two couples in a small New England college town who enter casually into such an affair, with disastrous consequences.

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Setting Free the Bears is the first novel by American author John Irving, published in 1968 by Random House. Irving studied at the Institute of European Studies in Vienna in 1963 and Bears was written between 1965 and 1967 based largely on Irving's understanding of the city and its rebellious youth of the 1960s. The …

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In 1954, in the cookhouse of a logging and sawmill settlement in northern New Hampshire, an anxious twelve-year-old boy mistakes the local constable’s girlfriend for a bear. Both the twelve-year-old and his father become fugitives, forced to run from Coos County—to Boston, to southern Vermont, to Toronto—pursued by …

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