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Publisher's Summary

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; and 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.
©2014 James A. Michener (P)2015 Random House Audio
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Critic Reviews

"A hell of a book.... While he fascinates and engrosses, Michener also educates." ( Los Angeles Times)
"An absorbing work.... Michener is a superb storyteller." ( BusinessWeek)
"An engrossing book...imaginative and intricate...teeming with people and giving a marvelous sense of the land." ( The Plain Dealer)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By garyyac on 08-21-15

Typical Michener, horrendous reader

Pretty good book and completely fits with the typical Michener approach to the generational historical novel, which I think he invented and has been cribbed by lesser minds since. It's generally interesting and mildly informative. Perfect for a long trip.

Special note about this awful reader: he truly takes Michener's verbosity to new lows of plodding, robotic dullness. Really not sure how someone this insensitive to the material can have a career as a reader. Generally I can work my way through most readers and get to the heart of the material, but it was really hard with Centennial.

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25 of 27 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By addictedtoaudibles on 09-30-15

Mixed Thoughts

Living in Colorado, I thought this would be a good Michener to start with. As a historical fiction piece, the things I liked about the book was the insight into the history of this native land - Indian culture, early settlers, understanding how water & the land play such a prominent role in Colorado's early survival. The things that I didn't like was the whole premise of the book: a professor who is fact-checking an article prior to publication. I think that whole premise could be edited out & it wouldn't make a difference. It also bothered me that the "fiction" side of the book was so large. An Indian or silversmith or early settler would be discussed & I would be interested enough to Google them to find out more information, only to find out that the characters are entirely fictional. Surely there were plenty of real people who lived fascinating lives that the author could have expounded upon in a fictional sense. So, in the end, I had to accept the book with a grain of salt - interesting information but not trusting where history ends & fiction begins.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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