Honolulu by Alan Brennert

Jun 12, 2010

This historical fiction takes us to Honolulu of the early 1900s, the era of early Chinese, Japanese and Korean settlers arriving in Oahu. The women arrive as "picture" brides, and the men come to work on the sugar plantations. The story spans through several generations, starting with the “old country” Korean parents and ending with the ethnic American melting pot of the 1950s. The book is a very enticing and engaging read, following the lives of a group of Korean women and is intertwined with local history. It includes trivia details behind the invention of aloha shirts, an introduction to the famous Hawaiian surfers and the native Hawaiian community, and the beginnings of air travel between Hawaii and the mainland on the famous Clipper, as well as covering the ethnic and civil unrests of the era. The book also touches on issues such as the annexation of Hawaii and the lives and faiths of the Hawaiian royal family. The book is very well researched and is an interesting read for audiences of varied interests. Alan Brennert is also the author of Maloka’I, describing the history of another Hawaiin island.

Reviewed by Library Staff