Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: Any good books on Hawaii?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Southern Va, soon Oahu
    Posts
    51

    Question Any good books on Hawaii?

    Hello. Brian and I are wondering if anyone can recommend any good books on Hawaii. Culture, hiking, etc. We have one book that goes into great detail about the flora and fauna of each of the islands. It's really good.
    Thanks!
    Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility. - Sigmund Freud

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    My Bedroom
    Posts
    606

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    I recommend you read "To Steal a Kingdom".

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Hilo Town
    Posts
    227

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    J.M. Scott, S. Mountainspring, R.L. Ramsey, and C.B. Kepler. 1986
    Forest Bird Communities of the Hawaiian Islands : Their Dynamics, Ecology, and Conservation.
    Studies in Avian Biology series.

    This book details the results of the first comprehensive Hawai'i Forest Bird Survey about 30 years ago, including some of the last observations of several species that became extinct in the last 20 years, and historical details about many of the other extinct species. It's available from used book places on the internet for about $35.

    I haven't found any good hiking books. All the ones I've seen are written for tourists or lightweights, and recommend the same obvious assortment of fairly boring or short hikes. Very little info on real adventures. The only way to get good hiking info is a lot of research and word-of-mouth...or just pulling off the road and heading "out that way" to see for yourself.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Hilo Town
    Posts
    227

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Quote Originally Posted by beaker View Post
    J.M. Scott, S. Mountainspring, R.L. Ramsey, and C.B. Kepler. 1986
    Forest Bird Communities of the Hawaiian Islands : Their Dynamics, Ecology, and Conservation.
    Studies in Avian Biology #9
    Fixed the series number.

    This seems to be a more recent one, that I haven't obtained yet:

    Evolution, Ecology, Conservation and Management of Hawaiian Birds: a vanishing avifauna.
    Studies in Avian Biology #22.
    J. Michael Scott, S. Conant and C. Van Riper.
    Cooper Ornithological Society, Kansas. 2001.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    New to Leeward O'ahu
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    I read a book called "Shoal of Time" by Gavan Daws.

    http://www.amazon.com/Shoal-Time-His.../dp/0824803248

    It gives an overview of the history of the Hawai'ian Islands starting from Captain Cook's "discovery" of Hawai'i to statehood. It is fairly concise, and reads like a narrative, not a textbook, so it was a fairly good read. There are sections that talk exclusivley about the politics involved in achieving statehood, but that is expected when in any history book that outlines the "birth" of a nation/state.

    But I am curious about this book. I am not local, I don't live on Hawai'i. I wanted to read a book that could educate me a bit on Hawai'i's history so that I could get a better perspective of the people/culture of the Islands. In my opinion, Daws did a good job of remaining objective, favouring neither the Hawai'ians or the White Man, allowing the reader to form their own opinions. Are these thoughts shared by any locals who have read it? What is your opinion? And in keeping with the thread topic, are there any books about Hawai'is history or culture that you could recommend.

    Another book that I thoroughly enjoyed was "Rice Paper Airplane" by Gary Pak. It's not really a Hawai'i book, it's a book about a Korean dude and his life as a revolutionary in Korea during Japanese colonial rule, and as a farmer in Hawai'i. The book weaves reality with mythology seamlessly. To me it is much like the Hawai'ian language, very melodic and rhythmical, like the sounds of the ocean.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsGoTime! View Post
    I read a book called "Shoal of Time" by Gavan Daws.

    http://www.amazon.com/Shoal-Time-His.../dp/0824803248

    It gives an overview of the history of the Hawai'ian Islands starting from Captain Cook's "discovery" of Hawai'i to statehood. It is fairly concise, and reads like a narrative, not a textbook, so it was a fairly good read. There are sections that talk exclusivley about the politics involved in achieving statehood, but that is expected when in any history book that outlines the "birth" of a nation/state.

    But I am curious about this book. I am not local, I don't live on Hawai'i. I wanted to read a book that could educate me a bit on Hawai'i's history so that I could get a better perspective of the people/culture of the Islands. In my opinion, Daws did a good job of remaining objective, favouring neither the Hawai'ians or the White Man, allowing the reader to form their own opinions. Are these thoughts shared by any locals who have read it? What is your opinion? And in keeping with the thread topic, are there any books about Hawai'is history or culture that you could recommend.
    I can understand how you might consider it to read objectively, but I do not. I do not judge harshly Mr Daws for this; he is only human, he did his best to impart good scholarship and research into the work, and it isn't his fault that he did not speak Hawaiian. It is this last fact that makes all of the difference because had he'd been able, he would have had a much better grasp of the subject. Still, in hindsight, SoT was a monumental work, and if I dig out my copy, I put stickies on all sorts of errors (one of these days I ought to publish them, considering all the time/effort I put into researching them for no other reason than I was curious, and knew it contradicted Hawaiian newspaper articles that I had read along the way).

    pax

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    New to Leeward O'ahu
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pua'i Mana'o View Post
    I can understand how you might consider it to read objectively, but I do not. I do not judge harshly Mr Daws for this; he is only human, he did his best to impart good scholarship and research into the work, and it isn't his fault that he did not speak Hawaiian. It is this last fact that makes all of the difference because had he'd been able, he would have had a much better grasp of the subject. Still, in hindsight, SoT was a monumental work, and if I dig out my copy, I put stickies on all sorts of errors (one of these days I ought to publish them, considering all the time/effort I put into researching them for no other reason than I was curious, and knew it contradicted Hawaiian newspaper articles that I had read along the way).
    I would love to hear more. Do you have any links to those articles? Maybe you should publish them. Or do you know of any good history books that Hawai'ian consider satisfactory? Thanks, Pua'i.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    if you go to ulukau.org you can find many (not exhaustive, but substantial and awesome) Hawaiian lang newspapers of the 19th century. Thing is, I don't know how much good they will be to you if you aren't a speaker.

    As for kanaka-approved works, even the jury is out on that one. Silva and Kama'elehiwa each wrote worthy tomes, but their styles of writing isn't objective, and that comes across. I would pick up Kama'elehiwa's and read it against SoT and consider that a good overview on the topic of modern Hawaiian history.

    pax

  9. #9

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Where do you feel "Hawai`i's Story" (by Queen Lili`uokalani) fits into a suggested-reading list? Obviously it won't be objective, but how do you feel it applies for purposes of accuracy and must-know information?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Kauai
    Posts
    270

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Where do you feel "Hawai`i's Story" (by Queen Lili`uokalani) fits into a suggested-reading list? Obviously it won't be objective, but how do you feel it applies for purposes of accuracy and must-know information?
    I bought Hawai`i's Story and Shoal of Time on my last visit to Kauai, haven't finished either of them (very little time for reading now) the book by Silva was on my Amazon list, didn't know about Native Land Foreign Desires, that sounds excellent. Several people I spoke with in Hawaii did not give much credit to Shoal of Time, but I bought it anyway ~ wanted to add any and all books to my library to read when I move. I would love to read a critique on Shoal because most people that are not really knowledgeable regarding Hawaiian history, (like me) would put a lot of credence in that book. It was recommended at almost all of the bookstores I visited. Many thanks for the links, for the last six years Iíve been fascinated by Hawaiian History and Culture ~ with every book I realize how little I know and how much there is to learn. Last book I read was Native Daughter, Trask is an interesting woman a bit militant but definitely gets her point across.
    "When you dance there are two of you, your spiritual self and your physical self. The spirit has to dance." ~ Aunty Mae Ulalia Loebenstein

  11. #11

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Where do you feel "Hawai`i's Story" (by Queen Lili`uokalani) fits into a suggested-reading list? Obviously it won't be objective, but how do you feel it applies for purposes of accuracy and must-know information?
    I don't read Lili'u outside of her context. She lived that life at that place and time, and her perspectives are beyond compare. If anyone can be excused for an inability to see the forest through the trees, it most definitely is her. That said, she had more opportunities, more exposure, more "training" if you will at the feet of more Hawaiian kings, queens, kahu, immigrants, haole movers and shakers, international dignitaries and courts than anyone. Her perspective in print is a gold mine to me.

    pax

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Western Washington
    Posts
    207

    Default Re: Any good books on Hawaii?

    hmmmmm..... i have shoal of time and hawaiian mythology.

    haven't cracked either of them yet and i bought them on our last trip to the islands two years ago.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •