I just finished reading Alan Brennert's fascinating Honolulu, a tale of Korean immigrant life in Hawai'i in the 1920s and 1930s, the scope of the book from the point of view of an imported picture bride who experiences plantation life, Honolulu's red light district, the stigma of divorce, and a slow climb out of poverty. Brennert's book helps me see Hawai'ian history more clearly and the rich blended ethinic mix we take for granted today. Also, rare for me, I forgot he was writing from a female point of view. An excellent read.
I also found his 'Author's Note' at the end of the book entrancing. For Alan Brennert does not stint on his research or in telling us how real people (from Somerset Maugham to the original Charlie Chan -- Chang Apana) inspired him. He lists at least 60 books that were helpful in developing a "true" sense of Hawai'ian culture.
Makes me feel a little better about the piles of books that surround me yet -- and thankful for interlibrary loan (two books in now, Kay Daniels, Convict Women, and Deborah Oxley, Convict Maids: The Forced Migration of Women to Australia). Today was a good day. Over 500 words, new plot twists, and outside, a hummingbird sips at our new bird feeder.