“If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home.” – James Michener
About James Michener
James Albert Michener ( February 3, 1907 – October 16, 1997) was an American author of more than 40 books, the majority of which were fictional, lengthy family sagas covering the lives of many generations in particular geographic locales and incorporating solid history. Michener was known for the popularity of his works; he had numerous bestsellers and works selected for Book of the Month Club. He was also known for his meticulous research behind the books.
Michener’s novels include Tales of the South Pacific for which he won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1948, Hawaii, The Drifters, Centennial, The Source, The Fires of Spring, Chesapeake, Caribbean, Caravans, Alaska, Texas and Poland. His non-fiction works include Iberia, about his travels in Spain and Portugal; his memoir titled The World Is My Home, and Sports in America. Return to Paradise combines fictional short stories with Michener’s factual descriptions of the Pacific areas where they take place.
He also wrote an analysis of the Electoral College system of the United States, which condemned it, Presidential Lottery: The Reckless Gamble in Our Electoral System, published in 1969, and republished in 2014 and 2016.
His first book was adapted as the popular Broadway musical South Pacific by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, and later as a film by the same name, adding to his financial success.
Michener wrote that he did not know who his biological parents were or exactly when or where he was born. He said he was raised a Quaker by an adoptive mother, Mabel Michener, in Doylestown, Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
Michener graduated from Doylestown High School in 1925. He attended Swarthmore College, 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 for two years.
Michener began his writing career during World War II, when as a lieutenant in the Navy he was assigned to the South Pacific as a naval historian.
Michener was called to active duty during World War II in the United States Navy. 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 his stories published in his breakout work Tales of the South Pacific.
(Source – Wikipedia)