Book Review

THIS IS PARADISE by Kristiana Kahakauwila

Rating: 3 / 5

THIS IS PARADISE by Kristiana Kahakauwila is a short story collection set in Hawaii. The depiction goes behind the tourist paradise so often depicted and focuses in more on the lives of those who make Hawaii their home. In her stories, the author addresses the tensions that builds from some locals’ dependence on the tourism trade, the grief and loss suffered by broken families. A woman attempts to excel in a seemingly male dominated world of cockfighting. A young man returns to his home as his father is dying, contemplating whether to tell his conservative father that he is gay.

I had mixed feelings about this collection as a whole. Some of the stories did definitely stand out to me more than others, which isn’t surprising for a short story collection. I did really enjoy the diversity in the stories. There is a blend of people from different races, backgrounds and educations. Characters have different speech patterns based on their backgrounds, including a pidgin English which was heavy enough at times to make me stop and reread to interpret. As a whole the collection is a bit melancholy, though there are some touching moments as well.

Overall, I am glad that I picked these stories up, though I can’t say I was wowed by the entire collection.

Reading Challenges:

#ReadTheWorld21 – Pacific Islands

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s