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Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should Read

Our list of some of the best Hawaiian History books & series in recent years. Get inspired by one or more of the following books.

1. Captive Paradise: A History of Hawaii (2015)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadThe most recent state to join the union, Hawaii is the only one to have once been a royal kingdom. After its “discovery” by Captain Cook in the late 18th Century, Hawaii was fought over by European powers determined to take advantage of its position as the crossroads of the Pacific. The arrival of the first missionaries marked the beginning of the struggle between a native culture with its ancient gods, sexual libertinism and rites of human sacrifice, and the rigid values of the Calvinists. While Hawaii’s royal rulers adopted Christianity, they also fought to preserve their ancient ways. But…
Author(s): James L. Haley

2. Hawaiian Mythology (1982)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadKu and Hina-man andwoman-were the great ancestral gods of heaven and earth for the ancientHawaiians. They were life’s fruitfulness and all the generations of mankind,both those who are to come and those already born.The Hawaiian gods werelike great chiefs from far lands who visited among the people, entering their dailylives sometimes as humans or animals, sometimes taking residence in a stone orwooden idol. As years passed, the families of gods grew and included thetrickster Maui, who snared the sun, and fiery Pele of the volcano.Ancient Hawaiian lived bythe animistic philosophy…
Author(s): Martha Warren Beckwith

3. Dismembering Lahui: A History of the Hawaiian Nation to 1887 (2002)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadJonathan Osorio investigates the effects of Western law on the national identity of Native Hawaiians in this impressive political history of the Kingdom of Hawaii from the onset of constitutional government in 1840 to the Bayonet Constitution of 1887, which effectively placed political power in the kingdom in the hands of white businessmen. Making extensive use of legislative texts, contemporary newspapers, and important works by Hawaiian historians and others, Osorio plots the course of events that transformed Hawaii from a traditional subsistence economy to a modern nation, taking into account the many…
Author(s): Jonathan K. K. Osorio

4. Fornander’s Ancient History of the Hawaiian People to the Times of Kamehameha I (2005)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadA reprint of this classic of precontact history tracing Hawaii’s saga from legendary times to the arrival of Captain Cook, including an account of his demise. Originally published as volume II in the "An Account of the Polynesian Race: Its Origins and Migration," this historical work is made available again….
Author(s): Abraham Fornander

5. Surfing: A History of the Ancient Hawaiian Sport (1996)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadSurfing traces the history of the sport from its beginnings in ancient Hawaii through the mid 1960s. This revised edition of the 1966 classic features extensive illustrations, a new introduction, and articles by Mark Twain and Jack London recounting their observations on surfing. The book also explores the development of the surfboard and follows surfing’s timeline from the earliest legends to the accomplishments of modern surfing heroes. By Ben Finney and James D. Houston. 120 pages, approximately 50 black-and-white historical photographs, with maps and diagrams, size: 10 3/4 x 9″. Smythe-sewn paperbound book….
Author(s): Ben R. Finney, James D. Houston

6. Timeline Hawaii: An Illustrated Chronological History of the Islands (2013)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadThis highly illustrated timeline, with over 300 photographs, moves readers through the history of Hawaiian Islands, telling a story point by point until a fuller picture emerges. In this volume are collected the dates and names of the men and women who have affected these Islands, some for the better, some for worse. Here is Kamehameha I, unifier of the Islands, alongside Captain Cook, whose voyages to the Islands precipitated years of contact with the West and the near eradication of Hawaiian culture. Here are a multitude of people and events…
Author(s): Daniel Harrington, Bennett Hymer

7. The Great Book of Hawaii: The Crazy History of Hawaii with Amazing Random Facts & Trivia (A Trivia Nerds Guide to the History of the United States) (2019)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadHow much do you know about the Aloha State? There’s so much to learn about Hawaii that even residents of the state don’t know! In this trivia book, you’ll learn more about Hawaii’s history, pop culture, folklore, sports, and so much more! And so much more!As an added bonus, you’ll learn words from the Hawaiian language throughout the book.This book is packed with trivia facts about Hawaii. Some of the facts in this book are surprising, while others are sad or creepy. The one thing they have in common is that all of them are interesting! Whether you’re…
Author(s): Bill O’Neill

8. Lost Kingdom: Hawaii’s Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America’s First Imperial Venture (2013)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should Read“Only one American state was formally a sovereign monarchy. In this compelling narrative, the award-winning journalist Julia Flynn Siler chronicles how this Pacific kingdom, creation of a proud Polynesian people, was encountered, annexed, and absorbed.” —Kevin Starr, historian, University of Southern CaliforniaAround 200 A.D., intrepid Polynesians paddled thousands of miles across the Pacific and arrived at an undisturbed archipelago. For centuries, their descendants lived with almost no contact from the Western world but in 1778 their profound isolation was shattered with the arrival of Captain…
Author(s): Julia Flynn Siler

9. Hawaii (2002)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadPulitzer Prize–winning author James A. Michener brings Hawaii’s epic history vividly to life in a classic saga that has captivated readers since its initial publication in 1959. As the volcanic Hawaiian Islands sprout from the ocean floor, the land remains untouched for centuries—until, little more than a thousand years ago, Polynesian seafarers make the perilous journey across the Pacific, flourishing in this tropical paradise according to their ancient traditions. Then, in the early nineteenth century, American missionaries arrive, bringing with them a new creed and a new way of life. Based on exhaustive…
Author(s): James A. Michener, Steve Berry

10. Hawaii: A History from Polynesian Kingdom to American Statehood (1979)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadBook by Kuykendall, Ralph Simpson…
Author(s): Ralph Simpson Kuykendall

11. Hawaii’s Story by Hawaii’s Queen (1991)

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should ReadThe Hawaiian kingdom’s last monarch wrote her biography in 1897, the year before the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands by the United States. Her story covers six decades of island history told from the viewpoint of a major historical figure. Introduction by Glen Grant….
Author(s): Liliuokalani

Best Hawaiian History Books Everyone Should Read

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some hawaiian history books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

The Voices of Eden: A History of Hawaiian Language Studies

Author(s): Albert J. Schütz
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press, Year: 1994, Size: 1 Mb, Download: epub
ID: 678846

Please note that this booklist is not final. Some books are truly chart-busters according to USA Today, others are composed by unknown writers. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant books you could recommend? Leave a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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