- Paperback: 896 pages
- Publisher: Dial Press Trade Paperback; Reprint edition (December 13, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0812974921
- ISBN-13: 978-0812974928
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 1.5 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 239 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #163,967 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Caribbean: A Novel Paperback – December 13, 2005
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“Michener is a master.”—Boston Herald
“A grand epic . . . [James A. Michener] sympathizes with the struggles of the region’s most oppressed, and succeeds in presenting the Caribbean in its rich diversity.”—The Plain Dealer
“Remarkable and praiseworthy . . . utterly engaging.”—The Washington Post Book World
“Even American tourists familiar with some of the serene islands will find themselves enlightened. . . . In Caribbean, there appears to be a strong aura of truth behind the storytelling.”—The New York Times
From the Inside Flap
"A grand epic."
THE CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER
Master storyteller James A. Michener sweeps us off to the Caribbean, with a magnificent novel that captures the eternal allure of that glittering string of islands and their tumultuous history. Beginning in 1310 and continuing through Columbus's arrival and the bloody slave revolt of Haiti to the rise of Castro, CARIBBEAN carries us through 700 dramatic years in a tale teeming with revolution and romance, slavery and superstition, heartfelt characters and thunderous destinies.
A Dual Main Slection of the Book-of-the-Month Club
"From the Paperback edition.
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The story lines are good, helping to "flesh out" the earlier histories through various family representatives of early characters and dynasties in the work. I found this to be a clever means by which the changes could be seen to have taken place over the centuries. I confess that I can not understand why Mr.Michener felt that it was necessary to "invent" an Island in his "All Saints",for even if it might show how a former French island could have become British, there is ample evidence of this in so many other instances. I admit that it provided the author with a means by which he could use the persona of an American Newspaper reporter to act as something of an alter-ego, but the author manages usually in such works to find ways in which to do this anyway and without further "invention". Perhaps the reference to a Pre-World War II British Governor General who was decidedly pro-Nazi served to save the author from making reference to the late Duke of Windsor (A.K.A. the King Edward VIII who had abdicated to marry an American divorcee' ) sent as Governor General to Nassau. I do not know. In fact, I was a bit disappointed that the author had not made reference to this.
Mr.Michener makes some rather interesting observations regarding the various types of government under the flags of different European governments, zeroing in on mainly the Spanish, the French and the English, and while some of these evaluations might be written off as conjecture or generalizations, I felt that he had labeled them rather much as I would have done.His observations of Haiti, painful as they are to read, I found to be quite as I found them to be. Haiti was a Hell Hole fifty years ago ,when they still had some of their forests and today I cannot begin to imagine the poverty of that land. Yet, mention is made quite well in the person of Therese, a Haitian woman who is articulate, poised and well-read, and of what a superior human being she is. I too have met some Haitians who have come out of that pitiful land who are indeed quite spectacular. I had wondered for years how that could be possible. The author does not answer the question, nor does he attempt to do so, yet one comes away with the feeling: "There is always hope!". The same can be said of the assessment of Cuba, both before and since the revolution. As I recall, life under Batista was pretty difficult for Cubans, life under Castro might be grim, but one is left to wonder whether the Cuban exiles in Florida are not standing in the way of any real change between the governmental relations between the U.S. and Castro's Cuba.
The Caribbean is a lot of ground ( and sea!) to cover : ethnically, historically and governmentally. It can only be approached in a limited way. We who would try to describe the region are not unlike the ten blind men in the Aesop fable, who go forth to meet with an elephant and then to describe its nature. Each individual may see a part, but never the whole. I would have to say that I think the author sees at least several parts of that whole