Literary / This curious, charming and slender volume feels incomplete, but then so was the truncated life of the writer, Henry Opukaiia, who died in 1818 at the age of 26 in Connecticut, far away from his Big Island home. Though labeled a memoir, it is annotated by the editors and interspersed with recollections of others who knew the author.
Literary / “They must have been stories before they were real, the Hawaiian islands, don’t you think?” asks Brian Doyle in the introduction to this anthology. I was expecting something more literary–on the order of rigorously composed and edited short stories and nature essays, say–from a decade-old writers’ group whose mentors have included W.S.
Literary / The unlikely but convincingly drawn journey of a Kauai-born singer from small-kid time to New York and then, at the heart of this first novel, to Salzburg–just before the Russian tanks approach the city in l968–is catalyzed by her love of music. In Aloha, Mozart, as Maile Manoa progresses from Hawaii child entertainer to a 26-year-old classical performer on the cusp of international success, so does her understanding of the world outside and the intricacies and ironies of success in a culture shadowed by both Mozart and Hitler, moving from high art to the ironies of politics, passions and slowly-unveiled secrets.
Literary / Even for the well-versed poetry enthusiast, Chinese poetry can begin and end with the short bangs of “The River-Merchant’s Wife.” But we’ve traveled far from Ezra Pound’s translation of that eighth century love letter. The road from Cho-Fu-Sa veers and switchbacks to the White Terror, the Cultural Revolution, Tiananmen Square, sweatshop labor, and Richard Gere’s plea for a free Tibet.
Memoir / This refreshing memoir recounts the young life of the mezzo soprano, and now Hawaii resident, Laurie Rubin, who’s in her early thirties. It opens with the innocuous question asked backstage by a young girl, “Do you dream in color?” For most people, the question would be easy enough.
Memoir / There are countless stories about Hawaii that have not been shared with the rest of the world. Thanks to Anwei Skinsnes Law, the history of Kalaupapa is no longer one of them.
Memoir / After three years of talking story and developing a deep friendship, Elroy Makia Malo, with the help of Pamela Young, wrote a memoir of his rich, inspiring life as one of the last residents in Kalaupapa. The style and tone of Malo’s memoir tap his talents as a celebrated chronicler and poet of Hawai’i nei.
Science & Nature / Instead of sending her children to Outward Bound, Audrey Sutherland drew up a list: “31 things Every Kid Should Be Able to Do by Age 16.” Entry #22: “Be happy and comfortable alone for ten days, ten miles from the nearest other person.” This is how she, as a single parent in Hawaii, raised her four children to be self-sufficient. The solo philosophy is how she explores life.
Children's / In an enthralling tale of two sixth-grade cousins who bump into each other on a field trip to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, illustrator Roy Chang takes the bold step from teaching art and drawing cartoons to crafting a children’s novel packed with adventure, history, legends and modern twists that combine all the elements of a good story with the magic of Hawaii. Cacy and Kiara, our two heroines in a predominantly-female book, stumble upon an authentic Hawaiian kii (an eight-inch wooden tiki) inside of a lava tube when they get separated from their classmates.
Children's / Recipes from Sam Choy, Ed Kenney, Fred DeAngelo, Roy Yamaguchi, Alan Wong and many more world-renowned chefs from Hawaii empower families to cook homemade meals with ease in Gwendolyn Trowbridge’s Hawaii’s Baby & Toddler Cookbook: Recipes with Aloha for your Growing ‘Ohana. For all age groups, not just those the title implies, this cookbook is organized well, from First Foods to Family Feasts.