From the acclaimed author of "Snow Mountain Passage" comes this richly evocative novel that follows a half-Indian, half-Hawai'ian woman and her complex relationship with the last king of Hawai'i. When talk show host Sheridan Brody finds the journals of his great grandmother Nani Keala (aka Nancy Callahan), he uncovers a mythic, unknown tale. Nani, a shy girl from a remote Indian village, met the Hawai'ian king, David Kalakaua, on his grand progress by train across the United States in 1881, eventually returning with him to Honolulu. There, as his young ally and protegee, ever more assured and charming, she played an integral role in his attempt to revive the monarchy and spirit of his people and, eventually, witnessed the mysterious circumstances surrounding his downfall. Deeply engaging through its vivid portrayal of California and Hawai'i at the end of the nineteenth century, "Bird of Another Heaven" is a masterful portrait of an era long past.
About the Author
James D. Houston is the coauthor with his wife, Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston, of the bestselling Farewell to Manzanar, and author of six other novels, including Continental Drift, Love Life, and The Last Paradise. His nonfiction works include Californians and In the Ring of Fire: A Pacific Basin Journey. He lives in Santa Cruz, California, in the house where Patty Reed spent the last years of her life.
“Fascinating. . . . Houston has given us the story of a lifetime.” —The Washington Post Book World“Poignant. . . . [Houston's subjects] have never been written about with more insight.” —The Oregonian“[Bird of Another Heaven], filled with real historical figures, richly reconceives the demise of the Hawaiian monarchy.” —Entertainment Weekly“Sweeping….a panoramic saga that spans two centuries.” —Sacramento Bee