375 W Court St, Doylestown, PA 18901, United States
Michener graduated from Doylestown High School (now Central Bucks High School West) in 1925.
500 College Ave, Swarthmore, PA 19081, United States
Michener attended Swarthmore College, in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, where he played basketball and was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity.
St Andrews KY16 9AJ, United Kingdom
Michener studied in Scotland at the University of St Andrews in the medieval town of St. Andrews for two years.
Michener as a student of the University of St Andrews
James Michener during his military service
(An intimate early novel from James A. Michener, now remem...)
An intimate early novel from James A. Michener, now remembered as the beloved master of the historical epic, The Fires of Spring unfolds with the bittersweet drama of a boy’s perilous journey into manhood. David Harper is an orphan, seemingly doomed to loneliness and poverty. As an adolescent con artist and petty thief, David spends his days grifting at an amusement park, the place where he first learns about women and the mysteries of love. Soon he discovers that his longing to embrace the world is stronger than the harsh realities that constrain him. Featuring autobiographical touches from Michener’s own life story, The Fires of Spring is more than a novel: It’s a rich slice of American life, brimming with wisdom, longing, and compassion.
(From a great master of historical fiction comes a brillia...)
From a great master of historical fiction comes a brilliant tale of love amid war. James A. Michener combines powerful storytelling with deep sensitivity in this novel of a U.S. Army man who, against all odds, falls for a fascinating Japanese woman. Stationed in the exotic Far East, Major Lloyd Gruver considers himself lucky. The son of a general, dating the daughter of another powerful military family, he can look forward to a bright future. And he just can’t understand guys like Private Joe Kelly, who throw away their lives in the States by marrying local girls. But then Lloyd meets Hana-ogi. After that, nothing matters anymore... nothing but her.
(The Bridge at Andau is James A. Michener at his most grip...)
The Bridge at Andau is James A. Michener at his most gripping. His classic nonfiction account of a doomed uprising is as searing and unforgettable as any of his bestselling novels. For five brief, glorious days in the autumn of 1956, the Hungarian revolution gave its people a glimpse at a different kind of future - until, at four o’clock in the morning on a Sunday in November, the citizens of Budapest awoke to the shattering sound of Russian tanks ravaging their streets. The revolution was over. But freedom beckoned in the form of a small footbridge at Andau, on the Austrian border. By an accident of history it became, for a few harrowing weeks, one of the most important crossings in the world, as the soul of a nation fled across its unsteady planks.
(Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener brings Ha...)
Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener brings Hawaii’s epic history vividly to life in a classic saga that has captivated readers since its initial publication in 1959. As the volcanic Hawaiian Islands sprout from the ocean floor, the land remains untouched for centuries - until, little more than a thousand years ago, Polynesian seafarers make the perilous journey across the Pacific, flourishing in this tropical paradise according to their ancient traditions. Then, in the early nineteenth century, American missionaries arrive, bringing with them a new creed and a new way of life. Based on exhaustive research and told in Michener’s immersive prose, Hawaii is the story of disparate peoples struggling to keep their identity, live in harmony, and, ultimately, join together.
(First published in 1963, James A. Michener’s gripping chr...)
First published in 1963, James A. Michener’s gripping chronicle of the social and political landscape of Afghanistan is more relevant now than ever. Combining fact with riveting adventure and intrigue, Michener follows a military man tasked, in the years after World War II, with a dangerous assignment: finding and returning a young American woman living in Afghanistan to her distraught family after she suddenly and mysteriously disappears. A timeless tale of love and emotional drama set against the backdrop of one of the most important countries in the world today, Caravans captures the tension of the postwar period, the sweep of Afghanistan’s remarkable history, and the inescapable allure of the past.
(In his signature style of grand storytelling, James A. Mi...)
In his signature style of grand storytelling, James A. Michener transports us back thousands of years to the Holy Land. Through the discoveries of modern archaeologists excavating the site of Tell Makor, Michener vividly re-creates life in an ancient city and traces the profound history of the Jewish people - from the persecution of the early Hebrews, the rise of Christianity, and the Crusades to the founding of Israel and the modern conflict in the Middle East. An epic tale of love, strength, and faith, The Source is a richly written saga that encompasses the history of Western civilization and the great religious and cultural ideas that have shaped our world.
(Spain is an immemorial land like no other, one that James...)
Spain is an immemorial land like no other, one that James A. Michener, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author and celebrated citizen of the world, came to love as his own. Iberia is Michener’s enduring nonfiction tribute to his cherished second home. In the fresh and vivid prose that is his trademark, he not only reveals the celebrated history of bullfighters and warrior kings, painters and processions, cathedrals and olive orchards, he also shares the intimate, often hidden country he came to know, where the congeniality of living souls is thrust against the dark weight of history. Wild, contradictory, passionately beautiful, this is Spain as experienced by a master writer.
(In this triumphant bestseller, renowned novelist James A....)
In this triumphant bestseller, renowned novelist James A. Michener unfolds a powerful and poignant drama of disenchanted youth during the Vietnam era. Against exotic backdrops including Spain, Morocco, and Mozambique, he weaves together the heady dreams, shocking tribulations, and heartwarming bonds of six young runaways cast adrift in the world - as well as the hedonistic pursuit of drugs and pleasure that collapses all around them. With the sure touch of a master, Michener pulls us into the private world of these unforgettable characters, exposing their innermost desires with remarkable candor and infinite compassion.
(Written to commemorate the Bicentennial in 1976, James A....)
Written to commemorate the Bicentennial in 1976, James A. Michener’s magnificent saga of the West is an enthralling celebration of the frontier. Brimming with the glory of America’s past, the story of Colorado - the Centennial State - is manifested through its people: Lame Beaver, the Arapaho chieftain and warrior, and his Comanche and Pawnee enemies; Levi Zendt, fleeing with his child bride from the Amish country; the cowboy, Jim Lloyd, who falls in love with a wealthy and cultured Englishwoman, Charlotte Seccombe. In Centennial, trappers, traders, homesteaders, gold seekers, ranchers, and hunters are brought together in the dramatic conflicts that shape the destiny of the legendary West—and the entire country.
(In this classic novel, James A. Michener brings his grand...)
In this classic novel, James A. Michener brings his grand epic tradition to bear on the four-hundred-year saga of America’s Eastern Shore, from its Native American roots to the modern age. In the early 1600s, young Edmund Steed is desperate to escape religious persecution in England. After joining Captain John Smith on a harrowing journey across the Atlantic, Steed makes a life for himself in the New World, establishing a remarkable dynasty that parallels the emergence of America. Through the extraordinary tale of one man’s dream, Michener tells intertwining stories of family and national heritage, introducing us along the way to Quakers, pirates, planters, slaves, abolitionists, and notorious politicians, all making their way through American history in the common pursuit of freedom.
(James A. Michener’s masterly chronicle of South Africa is...)
James A. Michener’s masterly chronicle of South Africa is an epic tale of adventurers, scoundrels, and ministers, the best and worst of two continents who carve an empire out of a vast wilderness. From the Java-born Van Doorn family tree springs two great branches: one nurtures lush vineyards, the other settles the interior to become the first Trekboers and Afrikaners. The Nxumalos, inhabitants of a peaceful village unchanged for centuries, unite warrior tribes into the powerful Zulu nation. And the wealthy Saltwoods are missionaries and settlers who join the masses to influence the wars and politics that ravage a nation. Rivalries and passions spill across the land of The Covenant, a story of courage and heroism, love and loyalty, and cruelty and betrayal, as generations fight to forge a new world.
(Already a renowned chronicler of the epic events of world...)
Already a renowned chronicler of the epic events of world history, James A. Michener tackles the most ambitious subject of his career: space, the last great frontier. This astounding novel brings to life the dreams and daring of countless men and women—people like Stanley Mott, the engineer whose irrepressible drive for knowledge places him at the center of the American exploration effort; Norman Grant, the war hero and U.S. senator who takes his personal battle not only to a nation, but to the heavens; Dieter Kolff, a German rocket scientist who once worked for the Nazis; Randy Claggett, the astronaut who meets his destiny on a mission to the far side of the moon; and Cynthia Rhee, the reporter whose determined crusade brings their story to a breathless world.
(In this sweeping novel, James A. Michener chronicles eigh...)
In this sweeping novel, James A. Michener chronicles eight tumultuous centuries as three Polish families live out their destinies. The Counts Lubonski, the petty nobles Bukowksi, and the peasants Buk are at some times fiercely united, at others tragically divided. With an inspiring tradition of resistance to brutal invaders, from the barbarians to the Nazis, and a heritage of pride that burns through eras of romantic passion and courageous solidarity, their common story reaches a breathtaking culmination in the historic showdown between the ruthless Communists and rebellious farmers of the modern age. Like the heroic land that is its subject, Poland teems with vivid events, unforgettable characters, and the unfolding drama of an entire nation.
(Spanning four and a half centuries, James A. Michener’s m...)
Spanning four and a half centuries, James A. Michener’s monumental saga chronicles the epic history of Texas, from its Spanish roots in the age of the conquistadors to its current reputation as one of America’s most affluent, diverse, and provocative states. Among his finely drawn cast of characters, emotional and political alliances are made and broken, as the loyalties established over the course of each turbulent age inevitably collapse under the weight of wealth and industry. With Michener as our guide, Texas is a tale of patriotism and statesmanship, growth and development, violence and betrayal—a stunning achievement by a literary master.
(In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American fronti...)
In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American frontier, James A. Michener guides us through Alaska’s fierce terrain and history, from the long-forgotten past to the bustling present. As his characters struggle for survival, Michener weaves together the exciting high points of Alaska’s story: its brutal origins; the American acquisition; the gold rush; the tremendous growth and exploitation of the salmon industry; the arduous construction of the Alcan Highway, undertaken to defend the territory during World War II. A spellbinding portrait of a human community fighting to establish its place in the world, Alaska traces a bold and majestic saga of the enduring spirit of a land and its people.
(One of the premier novelists of the twentieth century, Ja...)
One of the premier novelists of the twentieth century, James A. Michener captures a frenzied time when sane men and women risked their very lives in a forbidding Arctic land to win a dazzling and elusive prize: Yukon gold. In 1897, gold fever sweeps the world. The promise of untold riches lures thousands of dreamers from all walks of life on a perilous trek toward fortune, failure - or death. Journey is an immersive account of the adventures of four English aristocrats and their Irish servant as they haul across cruel Canadian terrain toward the Klondike gold fields. Vivid and sweeping, featuring Michener’s probing insights into the follies and grandeur of the human spirit, this is the kind of novel only he could write.
(In this acclaimed classic novel, James A. Michener sweeps...)
In this acclaimed classic novel, James A. Michener sweeps readers off to the Caribbean, bringing to life the eternal allure and tumultuous history of this glittering string of islands. From the 1310 conquest of the Arawaks by cannibals to the decline of the Mayan empire, from Columbus’s arrival to buccaneer Henry Morgan’s notorious reign, from the bloody slave revolt on Haiti to the rise of Cuba’s Fidel Castro, Caribbean packs seven hundred dramatic years into a tale teeming with revolution and romance, authentic characters and thunderous destinies. Through absorbing, magnificent prose, Michener captures the essence of the islands in all of their awe-inspiring scope and wonder.
(Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener, whose no...)
Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener, whose novels hurtle from the far reaches of history to the dark corners of the world, paints an intoxicating portrait of a land whose past and present are as turbulent, fascinating, and colorful as any other on Earth. When an American journalist travels to report on the upcoming duel between two great matadors, he is ultimately swept up in the dramatic story of his own Mexican ancestry - from the brilliance and brutality of the ancients, to the iron fist of the invading Spaniards, to modern Mexico, fighting through dust and bloodshed to build a nation upon the ashes of revolution. Architectural splendors, frenzied bullfights, horrific human sacrifice: Michener weaves them all into an epic human story that ranks with the best of his beloved bestselling novels.
(In this remarkable novel, Pulitzer Prize-winning author J...)
In this remarkable novel, Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener draws on his unparalleled gift for storytelling, his deep understanding of American society, and his own life experiences to illuminate the challenges of aging and the folly of youth. As the new director of a Florida retirement home known as the Palms, Andy Zorn suffers no shortage of loving support from his “elders”, a group of five passionate, outspoken residents. Still, Andy’s shortcomings tear him apart. But when he meets an extraordinary young woman who has been forced to rebuild her life after suffering crippling injuries, he finds himself falling in love. And with a few gentle jabs from his more mature friends, he discovers a wonderful new purpose in life.
Michener graduated from Doylestown High School (now Central Bucks High School West) in 1925. He attended Swarthmore College, in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, where he played basketball and was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. After graduating summa cum laude in 1929, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and History, he traveled and studied in Scotland at the University of St Andrews in the medieval town of St. Andrews for two years.
James Michener accepted a guest lecturer position at Harvard, from 1939 to 1940, but left to join Macmillan Publishers as their social studies education editor.
Michener was enlisted in the United States Navy during World War II. He served as a naval historian in the South Pacific from 1944 to 1946, and his early fiction is set in this area. He traveled throughout the South Pacific Ocean on various assignments which he gained because his base commanders mistakenly thought his father was Admiral Marc Mitscher. His experiences during these travels inspired the stories published in his breakout work Tales of the South Pacific.
Michener’s novels were usually massive in scope, and he researched them extensively. Novels such as Hawaii (1959) and The Source (1965) typically open with the earliest history of an area - the geology, flora, and fauna - and ultimately encompass the people who settle and rule there. He sometimes spent years preparing a book, as he did in Spain for Iberia: Spanish Travels and Reflections (1968). Michener wrote with journalistic skill, aiming to instruct. Although he was criticized for the abundance of detail and facts in his fiction, his books were extremely popular, offering the reader a carefully and elaborately created world.
In his later years, Michener turned his interest to American landscapes in Centennial (1974) and Chesapeake (1978). The Covenant (1980) concerns South Africa and the background of apartheid. Another massive opus was Space (1982), in which he tried, with mixed results, to fictionally chronicle the U.S. space program. Mexico (1992) fictionally deals with the problems of contemporary Mexico, partly as seen through the lens of bullfighting. There is also a strong dramatization of Indian slavery in the country’s silver mines.
Not all of Michener’s works were fictional. The Fires of Spring (1949) was autobiographical, as was his 1992 memoir, The World Is My Home. His last completed book was A Century of Sonnets (1997).
(From a great master of historical fiction comes a brillia...)1954
(Already a renowned chronicler of the epic events of world...)1982
(In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American fronti...)1988
(In this remarkable novel, Pulitzer Prize-winning author J...)1994
(One of the premier novelists of the twentieth century, Ja...)1989
(Spain is an immemorial land like no other, one that James...)1968
(In this triumphant bestseller, renowned novelist James A....)1971
(Written to commemorate the Bicentennial in 1976, James A....)1974
(In his signature style of grand storytelling, James A. Mi...)1965
(Spanning four and a half centuries, James A. Michener’s m...)1985
(In this acclaimed classic novel, James A. Michener sweeps...)1989
(Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener brings Ha...)1959
(Pulitzer Prize-winning author James A. Michener, whose no...)1992
(An intimate early novel from James A. Michener, now remem...)1949
(First published in 1963, James A. Michener’s gripping chr...)1963
(In this sweeping novel, James A. Michener chronicles eigh...)1983
(In this classic novel, James A. Michener brings his grand...)1978
(The Bridge at Andau is James A. Michener at his most grip...)1957
(James A. Michener’s masterly chronicle of South Africa is...)1980
Michener was a Quaker.
In 1960, Michener was chairman of the Bucks County committee to elect Democrat John F. Kennedy as the 35th President. In 1962, he unsuccessfully ran as a Democratic Party candidate for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania, a decision he later considered a misstep. "My mistake was to run in 1962 as a Democratic candidate for Congress. My wife kept saying, 'Don't do it, don't do it.' I lost and went back to writing books."
In 1968, Michener served as the campaign manager for the third-term run of the twice-elected U.S. Senator Joseph S. Clark of Pennsylvania. Michener later served as Secretary for the 1967–1968 Pennsylvania Constitutional Convention. Also that year, Michener was a member of the Electoral College, serving as a Pennsylvania Democrat. He wrote about that experience in a political science text Presidential Lottery: The Reckless Gamble in Our Electoral System, which was published the following year. In it, he suggested alternate systems, including using a direct popular vote by the majority for the office of President of the United States.
Michener in later life was a great philanthropist, contributing millions of dollars to universities and the Authors League Fund. Prior to his death, he donated 1,500 Japanese prints to the University of Hawaii.
James Michener was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity.
James Michener was married three times. He married Patti Koon in 1935. In 1948, they divorced, and the same year Michener married his second wife, Vange Nord. Michener met his third wife, Mari Yoriko Sabusawa, at a luncheon in Chicago. Michener divorced Nord in 1955 and married Sabusawa the same year. Sabusawa died in 1994.