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Literary Finds about Hawai’i

By Hiluxury Team | Photography By Nathalie Walker

FROM TWAIN’S WRITINGS ABOUT HIS TRAVELS throughout the kingdom of Hawai’i to Kaui Hart Hemmings’ modern-day kama’aina story, our Island home has never failed to fascinate. Here are three tomes that look at the Islands through very different eyes. Each is an equally engrossing read and must-have for the “I live here” section of your library.

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Polynesia: The Mark and Carolyn Blackburn Collection of Polynesia Art
By Adrienne Kaeppler; University of Hawai’i Press

This volume offers up the first glances at this unique art collection that encompasses all of the cultures of Polynesia. Here, readers can peruse paintings, artifacts, fabrics, implements and more from such far-flung cultures as the Marquesas, Tokelau, Fiji, the Cook Islands, Tahiti, Rapa Nui and of course, Hawai’i. Better yet are the descriptions that accompany the images, describing where each piece fit into each society.

Hart Wood: Architectural Regionalism in Hawaii
By Don J. Hibbard, Glenn Mason and Karen Weitze; University of Hawai’i Press

One can see his fingerprints are all over town-the S. & G Gump Building on Kalakaua Avenue, Alexander & Baldwin Building on Bishop Street and the Honolulu Board of Water Supply Administration Building on Beretania Street, to name a few-and this book lays out in vivid detail architect Hart Wood’s legacy to Hawaii architecture. The book follows Wood’s path from Denver, then to San Francisco and finally Hawai’i. The authors examine his designs (and compare them with those of his contemporaries) along the way.

Unfamiliar Fishes
By Sarah Vowell; Riverhead Books

This New-York Times best-selling author set her sights on the Aloha State as the latest in her humorous brand of history- telling. Vowell covers it all: New England missionaries, the monarchy, sugar barons-even plate lunches. She makes no bones about the fact that she’s an outsider, and it’s that fresh perspective-combined with her honest curiosity and a sharp wit-that makes this a very enlightening read indeed.

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