This Is Paradise by Kristiana Kahakauwila
Stories

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The author’s assured use of both pidgin and standard English mirrors her characters’ uneasy feeling of straddling two worlds...
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Elegant, brutal, and profound—this magnificent debut captures the grit and glory of modern Hawai'i with breathtaking force and accuracy.
 
In a stunning collection that announces the arrival of an incredible talent, Kristiana Kahakauwila travels the islands of Hawai'i, making the fabled place her own. Exploring the deep tensions between local and tourist, tradition and expectation, façade and authentic self, This Is Paradise provides an unforgettable portrait of life as it’s truly being lived on Maui, Oahu, Kaua'i and the Big Island.

In the gut-punch of “Wanle,” a beautiful and tough young woman wants nothing more than to follow in her father’s footsteps as a legendary cockfighter. With striking versatility, the title story employs a chorus of voices—the women of Waikiki—to tell the tale of a young tourist drawn to the darker side of the city’s nightlife. “The Old Paniolo Way” limns the difficult nature of legacy and inheritance when a patriarch tries to settle the affairs of his farm before his death.

Exquisitely written and bursting with sharply observed detail, Kahakauwila’s stories remind us of the powerful desire to belong, to put down roots, and to have a place to call home.
 

About Kristiana Kahakauwila

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KRISTIANA KAHAKAUWILA, a native Hawaiian, was raised in Southern California. She earned a master of fine arts from the University of Michigan and a bachelor's degree in comparative literature from Princeton University. She has worked as a writer and editor for Wine Spectator, Cigar Aficionado, and Highlights for Children magazines, and taught English at Chaminade University in Honolulu. She is an assistant professor of creative writing at Western Washington University.


Author Residence: Bellingham, WA


Author Hometown: Long Beach, CA
 
Published July 9, 2013 by Hogarth. 242 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for This Is Paradise
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Publishers Weekly

Good
on Apr 29 2013

...a well-crafted work that compassionately treats the men and women who love and suffer in an island paradise.

Read Full Review of This Is Paradise: Stories | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Kirkus

Good
on Apr 16 2013

The author’s assured use of both pidgin and standard English mirrors her characters’ uneasy feeling of straddling two worlds...

Read Full Review of This Is Paradise: Stories | See more reviews from Kirkus

Reader Rating for This Is Paradise
85%

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