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The Best of Hawaii

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXHWI67. Buy these 4 items as a set for $59 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
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Mark Twain's Letters from Hawaii

Mark Twain's Letters from Hawaii

by Mark Twain

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 298 PAGES

These observant and often wildly hilarious letters from an 1866 trip display Twain's famous wit. (HWI170, $17.99)

Hawaii Wildlife

Hawaii Wildlife

by James Kavanagh

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2010
  • PLASTIC CARD

A fold-up, laminated card featuring color drawings and short descriptions of commonly encountered birds, mammals and other critters of Hawaii. (HWI245, $6.95)

Eyewitness Guide Hawaii

Eyewitness Guide Hawaii

by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES

An on-the-ground guide to the Hawaiian Islands -- handsome, comprehensive and superb. (HWI46, $23.00)

Hawaiian Islands Map

Hawaiian Islands Map

by Nelles

  • MAP

A map of all the individual Hawaiian Islands, including maps of O'ahu, Kaua'i, Maui, Moloka'i and Lana'i at 1:150,000 and of Hawai'i at 1:330,000. Includes an inset map of Waikiki. (HWI42, $13.95)

 
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park


by Trails Illustrated

  • 2011
  • MAP

This handy map, with trails and visitor information, includes the entire park area. (HWI247, $11.95)

Captive Paradise, A History of Hawaii

Captive Paradise, A History of Hawaii


by James L. Haley

  • HISTORY
  • 2014
  • HARD COVER
  • 448 PAGES

A fascinating history of America's youngest (and, arguably, most unique) state. Historian and biographer James Haley charts Hawaii's epic journey from kingdom to statehood with authority. (HWI271, $29.99)

Lost Kingdom

Lost Kingdom


by Julia Flynn Siler

  • HISTORY
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 480 PAGES

Royalty and rogues, sugar barons, politicians and missionaries all figure in Siler's riveting tale of Liliuokalani, the last queen of Hawaii. (HWI254, $16.00)

Pearl Harbor Ghosts, The Legacy of December 7, 1941

Pearl Harbor Ghosts, The Legacy of December 7, 1941


by Thurston Clarke

  • HISTORY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 400 PAGES

A well-researched and evocative look at the bombing of Pearl Harbor by a veteran travel writer. Clarke compares and contrasts the social life and culture of Hawaii on the day of the bombing and sixty years later, enumerating the changes wrought by WWII. (HWI68, $19.00)

Shoal of Time: A History of the Hawaiian Islands

Shoal of Time: A History of the Hawaiian Islands


by Gavan Daws

  • HISTORY
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 494 PAGES

A vivid, scholarly history of Hawaii, from Cook's first visit to the islands in 1778 through statehood. A classic, well-told history, first published in 1968. (HWI02, $22.99)

The Food of Paradise, Exploring Hawaii's Culinary Heritage

The Food of Paradise, Exploring Hawaii's Culinary Heritage


by Rachel Laudan

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

Laudan takes readers on a thoughtful, wide-ranging tour of Hawaii's farms and gardens, fish auctions and vegetable markets, fairs and carnivals, mom-and-pop stores and lunch wagons to uncover the delightful complexities and incongruities in Hawaii's culinary history. With 150 recipes. (HWI257, $31.99)

Unfamiliar Fishes

Unfamiliar Fishes


by Sarah Vowell

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 256 PAGES
  • NEW

Tracking the Americanization of Hawaii from the arrival of the first missionaries in 1820 to the annexation in 1898 (Queen Liliuokalani was in Washington lobbying to save her nation during the McKinley inauguration), Vowell shows the complex interplay of god, business and tradition with her usual acerbic wit (and research). (HWI248, $16.00)

Born in Paradise

Born in Paradise


by Armine von Tempski

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 1985
  • PAPER
  • 342 PAGES
  • HARD TO FIND ELSEWHERE

The autobiographical tale of childhood on a Maui ranch in the early part of this century. A classic account of old Hawaii, warm-spirited and evocative. (HWI21, $14.95)

Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen

Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen


by Liliuokalani

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 410 PAGES

A poignant plea for sovereignty. Queen Liliuokalani, deposed by the United States in 1893, tells the story of her islands. (HWI20, $24.95)

Behold the Many

Behold the Many


by Lois-Ann Yamanaka

  • LITERATURE
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES

In this seventh novel, Yamanaka explores multi-faceted immigrant Hawaii through powerful tale of the travails of three sisters in the early 20th century. (HWI195, $14.00)

From Here to Eternity

From Here to Eternity


by James Jones

  • LITERATURE
  • 1991
  • PAPER
  • 954 PAGES

One of the finest books on the army and World War II, this powerful tale is set among the soldiers at the US Army base at Diamond Head in 1941. While the army is the primary subject of the book, it's also a vivid portrait of Hawaii just before Pearl Harbor. (HWI16, $17.00)

Hawaii

Hawaii


by James Michener

  • LITERATURE
  • 2002
  • PAPER
  • 937 PAGES

A romantic, fictional overview of the islands' history, people and culture from prehistoric times to statehood in 1959. (HWI17, $18.00)

Hotel Honolulu

Hotel Honolulu


by Paul Theroux

  • LITERATURE
  • 2002
  • PAPER
  • 424 PAGES

This hilarious sendup of ex-pats and their ilk, drawing on Theroux's time in the islands, where he has a home, features a full cast of eccentrics who reside in and visit a fleabag hotel on the coast of Oahu. (HWI72, $14.95)

House of Many Gods

House of Many Gods


by Kiana Davenport

  • LITERATURE
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 368 PAGES

Davenport's third novel, a rich evocation of life in Hawaii, follows a young woman trying to escape poverty and the Russian filmmaker who captures her heart. (HWI196, $16.00)

Moloka'i

Moloka'i


by Alan Brennert

  • LITERATURE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 400 PAGES

Set in Hawaii more than a century ago, Brennert's richly imagined novel of seven-year-old Rachel Kalama -- full of tales of stories of old Hawaii -- draws on historical accounts of Kalaupapa, the isolated leper colony on the island of Moloka'I. (HWI259, $14.99)

Shark Dialogues

Shark Dialogues


by Kiana Davenport

  • LITERATURE
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 490 PAGES

Riveting and rich in local imagery, this acclaimed novel follows the lives and loves of seven generations of Hawaiian women. (HWI03, $18.00)

Sleeping Beauties

Sleeping Beauties


by Susanna Moore

  • LITERATURE
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 231 PAGES

A fine novel featuring some beautifully rendered passages on the islands. It's the story of a young runaway, her eccentric aunt (an expert on local lore), and an opportunity to escape island life. (HWI18, $13.00)

Tales of the Pacific

Tales of the Pacific


by Jack London

  • LITERATURE
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 232 PAGES

Jack London spent the last year and a half of his life in and around the Hawaiian Islands. This collection of tales, skirting the line between fiction and non-fiction, is some of his last and best writing, richly evoking the islands. (PAC02, $13.00)

The Descendants

The Descendants


by Kaui Hart Hemmings

  • LITERATURE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 297 PAGES

The bittersweet tale of a storied Hawaiian family in crisis, adapted for the Alexander Payne movie starring George Clooney. (HWI255, $15.00)

Volcanoes, Crucibles of Change

Volcanoes, Crucibles of Change


by Richard Fisher

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 344 PAGES

A complete primer for the volcano lover, this heavily illustrated book covers types of volcanoes and eruptions, worldwide distribution and the physics of their formation. (GEO02, $30.95)

Volcanoes, Fire from the Earth

Volcanoes, Fire from the Earth


by Maurice Krafft

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1993
  • PAPER
  • 175 PAGES
  • HARD TO FIND ELSEWHERE

By the great French volcanologist (who died on the job on Mount Unzen in Japan in 1992), this pocket guide features hundreds of full-color paintings and traces the study of volcanoes from early myth and legend to modern science. (GEO06, $15.95)

A Field Guide to the Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific

A Field Guide to the Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific


by H. Douglas Pratt

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1987
  • PAPER
  • 409 PAGES

This landmark field guide with chapters on the islands and habitats features superb color plates by Pratt and a checklist of birds. (HWI32, $47.50)

Hawaii Fishwatcher's Field Guide

Hawaii Fishwatcher's Field Guide


by I. Greenberg

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1983
  • PLASTIC CARD

A handy, laminated card featuring full color illustrations of 60 common and spectacular denizens of Hawaiian coral reefs. (HWI53, $7.50)

Hawaii Trees & Wildflowers: An Introduction to Familiar Species

Hawaii Trees & Wildflowers: An Introduction to Familiar Species


by James Kavanagh

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 2 PAGES

Includes illustrations of over 120 plant species. (HWI239, $6.95)

Hawaii, Travellers' Wildlife Guides

Hawaii, Travellers' Wildlife Guides


by Les Beletsky

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 350 PAGES

This all-around field guide features color illustrations of commonly encountered birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and fish with notes on Hawaii's geology and popular parks and reserves. (HWI50, $27.95)

Hawaiian Marine Invertebrates, Shells of Hawaii

Hawaiian Marine Invertebrates, Shells of Hawaii


by I. Greenberg

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1987
  • PLASTIC CARD

A convenient laminated double-sided card featuring full color illustrations of cowries, cones and other shells, crabs, corals and other invertebrates. (HWI54, $7.50)

Shells of Hawaii

Shells of Hawaii


by E. Alison Kay | Olive Schoenberg-Dole

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 1991
  • PAPER
  • 89 PAGES
  • CURRENTLY UNAVAILABLE

A slim but colorful (and erudite) volume on Hawaii's shells, both marine and freshwater. Features color photographs of more than 300 species of mollusks. (HWI28, $14.99)

Shore Fishes of Hawaii

Shore Fishes of Hawaii


by John Randall

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 232 PAGES

A pocket field guide to all the reef fishes that a casual snorkeler or diver is likely to see. (HWI55, $19.99)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.