15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
The Mind of a Menage a Quatre,
By A Customer
This review is from: The 158-Pound Marriage (Ballantine Reader's Circle) (Paperback)
John Irving is a mastermind for rich characters. From the get go, he engages the reader with the less than pleasing imagery of a young Austrian girl, Utchka, who experiences the torture and and murder of her family by Russians from inside the belly of a gutted-out cow. It kept me reading! By intertwining the disturbing pasts of two married couples as they embark on a menage a quatre, Irving leads you through the mindful manipualtions and selfishness that inevitably follow the couples in their quest for open sexuality...or is it? Extremely saucy, all characters are completely unique and interesting. Irving's use of the wrestling metaphors through the eyes of Severin Winter,the washed up wrestling coach, are completely obtainable to those,like myself, who are totally negligent of wrestling terms. And of course, like any long standing novel should, Irving leaves plenty of questions unanswered about marriage, fidelity, and the value of trust. This was my first introduction to Irving, mostly because "Garp" and "Owen Meany" were checked out at the Library. The 158-Pound Marriage truly lives up to his more well-known novels!