The Godfather of Historical Fiction

James A. Michener was born on this day in 1907. Michener wrote more than 40 novels, many of them sweeping family sagas. He published his first novel, Tales of the South Pacific, at the age of 40, and it won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. It was later adapted for a Broadway musical and a film, both titled South Pacific. Michener became a very generous philanthropist, donating more than $100 million during his lifetime. He died in 1997 at the age of 90.