Blue Skin of the Sea by Graham Salisbury

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Eleven interlinked stories tell the tale of a boy coming of age in Kailua-Kona, a Hawaiian fishing village. Sonny Mendoza is a little different from the rest of the men in his family. Salisbury explores characters like Aunty Pearl, a full-blooded Hawaiian as regal as the queens of old; cool Jack, from L.A., who starts a gang and dares Sonny to be brave enough, cruel enough, to join; mysterious Melanie, who steals his heart; and Deeps, the shark hunter.

But the most memorable character is the sea itself: inviting, unpredictable, deadly. Mendoza men are brave men, but Sonny's courage is of a different kind. Why can't he love and trust the water as the men of his family are meant to do?

From the Paperback edition.

About Graham Salisbury

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Graham Salisbury writes from the heart and draws on his own experiences of growing up in Hawaii. His drive to write about the emotional journey that kids must take to become adults in a challenging and complicated world is evident through his work. Says the author: "I've thought a lot about what my job is, or should be, as an author of books for young readers. I don't write to teach, preach, lecture, or criticize, but to explore. . . . And if my stories show [characters] choosing certain life options, and the possible consequences of having chosen those options, then maybe I will have finally done something worthwhile. Wonder of wonders." Salisbury has already done something worthwhile. His first novel, Blue Skin of the Sea, won the PEN/Norma Klein Award, the Bank Street Child Study Awa
Published December 24, 2008 by Laurel Leaf. 224 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Literature & Fiction, Children's Books. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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 Ordinary as waves lapping sand, tempestuous as a stormy sea- -the growing-up years of Sonny Mendoza in Hawaii in the 50's and 60's derive their metaphors from the surrounding sea.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Blue Skin of the Sea

Publishers Weekly

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This first novel, which takes place on Hawaii between 1953 and 1966, strings together a collection of short stories to form a rare and exquisite narrative necklace. At its center sits Sonny Mendoza, d

Jun 01 1992 | Read Full Review of Blue Skin of the Sea

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