HawaiiBook - 1982 | 1st Ballantine Books ed.
Praise for Hawaii
"Wonderful . . . [a] mammoth epic of the islands." -- The Baltimore Sun
"One novel you must not miss! A tremendous work from every point of view--thrilling, exciting, lusty, vivid, stupendous." -- Chicago Tribune
"From Michener's devotion to the islands, he has written a monumental chronicle of Hawaii, an extraordinary and fascinating novel." -- Saturday Review
"Memorable . . . a superb biography of a people." -- Houston Chronicle
From the critics
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Born of violent deep-sea eruptions over millions of years, the islands of Hawaii eventually emerged above the surface of the ocean as one of the grandest archipelagos the world has known. By the 1920's Hawaii was caught in the spiral all successful civilizations find themselves: Growth was hammering the ecology. The jewel of the Pacific was being reigned in geographically, even as the population experienced a cultural metamorphosis. The fifth and final "migration" was an inner one. Developed from a sociological concept of a man forged in the islands out of Eastern and Western influences, the so-called Golden Man was both ancient yet in tune with modernity. He was, in all practicality, a modern god, as mythological in existence as the men who left the first footprints in the island sand; as tangible as all the other god-like characters that fill the pages of HAWAII. Hawaii will go on.
With HAWAII (Fawcett, $7.99), James A. Michener delivers a passionate historical account of the Hawaiian islands. It's a monumental book, both in the epic grandeur of the tale (it begins several million years before Man) and in the type of storytelling Michener attempts with it. Before HAWAII, his books lacked the historical fortitude that readers have come to associate with him; books such as THE SOURCE, THE COVENANT, SPACE, and others in which the author merges fiction with history to deliver a grand, new mythology on the subject.
HAWAII is not so much a story about how the islands affected the people who claimed them for themselves, but rather how the people affected the islands. Though Michener recounts four major migrations to the islands, each bringing with them customs and practices that tweaked Hawaiian culture, the enduring character throughout is the island chain itself.
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[T]he so-called Golden Man was both ancient yet in tune with modernity. He was, in all practicality, a modern god, as mythological in existence as the men who left the first footprints in the island sand; as tangible as all the other god-like characters that fill the pages of HAWAII.
I thought that the Golden Man concept referred to the coloring of the new man . . . in time I realized that this bright, hopeful man of the future, this unique contribution of Hawaii to the rest of the world, did not depend for his genesis upon racial intermarriage at all. He was a product of the mind. His was a way of thought, and not of birth, and one day I discovered . . . that for several years I had known the archetypes of the Golden Man . . ."
-Hoxworth Hale, decendent of the first missionaries to Hawaii, HAWAII, by James Michener
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