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Recessional: A Novel Mass Market Paperback – Oct 30 1995


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 540 pages
  • Publisher: Fawcett; Reprint edition (Oct. 30 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0449223450
  • ISBN-13: 978-0449223451
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.7 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #271,233 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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3.3 out of 5 stars
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you enjoy Michener's style at all, you'll find this a good read too. It is true, as others have noticed, that the author may be getting old. Where before, when my first impulse was "nobody talks that way" I could remind myself that English is not my native language and America not my home, in this book many dialogs are clearly contrived. Nevertheless, the thing that matters is how much Michener managed to put into them, and believe me, he still does.
A point noone else commented on: The whole book, from beginning to end, is a royal slagging off of the one profession I despise most. So if you happen to be a lawyer, it may be you will not enjoy the book as much as I did - but especially then I recommend you to read it and try to take it to heart.
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By Jeffrey Leeper on Feb. 27 2002
Format: Hardcover
"Recessional" was my introduction into James Michener's writing. This novel is the work of a fine craftsman. Upon reading, you feel that there are no wasted characters or scenes; all are important and work towards making a beautiful canvas for you to enjoy.
In this story a young doctor, Dr. Andy Zorn, is driven from his practice in Chicago by a frivolous lawsuit against him and by his divorce. Mr. Taggert, the owner of a chain of retirement communities, hires Dr. Zorn to manage of his properties, The Palms in Tampa, which is not making a profit. It is at this location that Zorn must rebuild the community and his life.
Of the characters Zorn meets, you feel that you have met them before, but never took the time to know them. For instance, there is Mr. Bixby who seems like just another retiree. One day, someone notices that he is "the" Buzz Bixby of World Series fame many years ago. All the characters, and for the matter all retirees, have had a wealth of experiences which get overlooked when we do not try to understand.
Michener also discusses many issues (as an aside, this was written in the early nineties) such as Alzheimer's, AIDS, euthanasia, and living wills. There are other topics, but these seem to be the most poignant. Throughout these issues, you will never feel that Michener is preaching to you, but you will know how he feels.
I would recommend this book. It is an enjoyable read.
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By A Customer on Feb. 15 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
While I have read a great number of his other books and enjoyed most of them thoroughly, this book touched me like no others. I have two grandmothers living in similar retirement communities to that in the story and this gave me some great insight and understanding to their lives in there. It felt like a true story based on their lives and those of their friends. I highly recogmend the book although it is certainly not like his other epics.
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By A Customer on May 31 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
i liked this book very much, but if you are a regular fan of Michener, you may be dissapointed. I would suggest this book to anyone that has the time to read it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
While not one of Mr. Michener's epics I found Recessional to be highly inspiring but at the same time tragic dealing with the problems of growing old and looking at the problems of dying or for that matter not dying. While it probably won't change any minds about euthanasia it did make me convinced that I need to insure my family knows and respects my own wishes should I become completely incapacitated or terminally ill.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By kone on Jan. 1 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
James A. Michener must be anticipating his own retirement in this book as he writes a compelling and interesting novel about a retirement facility in Florida. What to most might be a very boring subject, Michener once again enlivens his characters and makes them so interesting that the book is a real page-turner. In our contemporary society, the aged are packed away into retirement homes and forgotten. In Michener's view, the elderly live interesting lives, have meaning and purpose, and are thinking, feeling people. Particularly facinating is the attempt of four of the elderly men who attempt to build and fly an experimental aircraft!
Michener invites the reader to ponder the intricate problem of medical science extending human life, and when life ceases to be meaningful. In 2003, the media was buzzing with the attempt by a husband to end the life of his brain damaged wife in a nursing home. Michener has stong opinions on this subject and appears to be a prophet in dealing with a topic that only recently came to the american public's attention.
This is perhaps Michener's last great novel. I believe the reader will find it engaging and worthwhile. Although it is not as superb as "Texas", "Centennial", or "The Source", Michener will not disappoint you in "Recessional".
Jim Koenig
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