4 Stars Out Of 5
The Hawaii That Was
June 8, 2011
The tropical vacationers paradise we know today as our 50th state is but a gleam in the eye of Rafe Easton and fellow annexation supporters. The royal government is not only corrupted by money being offered by the drug lords, but Hawaii is in danger of falling to whatever country decides to overtake the small island nation. Rafe knows it is crucial to gain the backing of the Unites States Constitution and Military.
Rafe's fiance Eden Derrington, a nurse, is part of one of the most influential families in Hawaii. She longs to go with her physician father, to work on the leper colony island of Molokai. She has learned that her mother, once thought dead, is actually living--and dying in the colony. Eden desires more than anything to spend time with the mother she barely remembers before it is too late.
Eden and her father need permission from Queen Liliuokalani to begin a clinic on the island. Rafe needs to make sure the queen learns nothing of the plans for annexation, or those behind it. When the plans for annexation go missing and Rafe learns that both Eden and her father were in the vicinity of the theft, will he be able to trust the woman he loves, or will mistrust tear them apart for good.
Written in a classic literary style with lots of dialogue between the characters telling much of the story, Chaikin really brings to life the struggles to bring Hawaii to what we know it as today. Well done character development is balanced with an intricate, yet easy to follow plot. Hawaiian Crossroads was an enjoyable read. This is the second book in the Dawn of Hawaii series, and although not essential, it is probably a good idea to begin with the first -The Spoils of Eden.
Fans of Chaikin's work may recognize characters in this beautiful story from earlier book For Whom the Stars Shine. Having read that book a number of years ago, I asked if it was technically a part of this series and here is Chaikins reply:
"We can call For Whom the Stars Shine a prequel to Spoils of Eden and Hawaiian Crosswinds. Stars deals with Rafe and Eden when they were younger and sets the stage for the big mystery of what happened to Eden's mother, Rebecca. The Dawn of Hawaii trilogy follows and builds on Stars after Eden realizes her mother is a leper. For Whom the Stars Shine is out of print right now and I'm hoping Moody may want to reprint it to go with the present trilogy."
This book is a definite 4 star read.
I received a review copy of this book from the publisher, Moody Press, through the NetGalley service. All opinions rendered are my own.