Now a major motion picture starring George Clooney!
Matthew King was once considered one of the most fortunate men in Hawaii. His missionary ancestors who came to the islands were financially and culturally progressive - one even married a Hawaiian princess, making Matt a royal descendant and one of the state’s largest landowners. But now his luck has changed. His two daughters are out of control - 10-year-old Scottie has a smart-ass attitude and a desperate need for attention and 17-year-old Alex, a former model, is a recovering drug addict. His thrill-seeking and high-maintenance wife, Joanie, lies in a coma after a boat racing accident, and will soon be taken off life support.
The King family can hardly picture life without their charismatic mother, but as they come to terms with this tragedy, their sadness is mixed with a sense of freedom that shames them - and spurs them into surprising actions.
©2007 Kaui Hart Hemmings. All rights reserved. (P)2010 BBC America Audiobooks
"Matt's journey with his girls forms the emotional core of this sharply observed, frequently hilarious and intermittently heartbreaking look at a well-meaning but confused father trying to hold together his unconventional family." (Publishers Weekly)
"[An] audaciously comic début novel.... Hemmings channels the voice of her befuddled middle-aged hero with virtuosity, as he teeters between acerbic and sentimental, scoffing at himself even as he grasps for redemption." (The New Yorker)
I love books!
First time author, Kaui Hart Hemmings. This book was made into a movie several years ago starring George Clooney. I remembered enjoying the movie and decided to give the book a try. Set in Hawaii it turned out the movie had followed the book pretty closely. At a higher level there was a subplot of an inheritance between family members of an old Hawaiian family. But at its core the story was about a wife/mother that was injured in a boating accident and was in a coma, brain dead and not coming around. The husband/father had to come to terms with it and have his two daughters understand and accept whatt's happening. In the process he bonds with his daughters in a way he never had before. It was the human side of the tale that made this a good story.
Realizing how fast the world moves around us, then when we do decide to look up, so much time has past us by! I enjoyed how he "woke up" to reality and then tried his best to resolve the things he had neglected for so many years!
Excellent reader! Sounded like George Clooney himself!
To me the father was the most memorable character.
Probably not from Kaui Hart. Davis' narration was fine.
Davis did a good job. It was not his fault that the protagonist was not very appealing.
Stopped listening after the first main section, so I can't comment on particular scenes.
This is a story about self-centered, entitled people who don't seem to like themselves or each other very much at all. None of the characters aroused my interest or sympathy. Describing them as dysfunctional would be a gross understatement. I did not enjoy their story. I cut my losses and quit listening. Life is too short for wasting time on such an unsatisfying literary experience.
Everything. The characters are flawed and interesting. I don't know that I would be friends with any of them but I enjoyed their story.
None that I can think of.
No, but I look forward to hearing more from him.
Probably Matt King.
I am a born and raise haole "Hawaiian" with family that has similar land situations...so I loved the story and have a distant connection to the author...The movie was wonderful... especially.. George!!! However the narrator turned me off with his poor pronunciation of the Hawaiian language...even the simplest words.
Some one who knows the islands and the language...with a connection.
I mentally pictured George Cloonie during this entire book. That raised the enjoyment level quite high.
The story was limited, but the book was enjoyable and simple. Characters were predictable but charming. If you need a pleasant read....Hawaii setting did not hurt.
Family is first.
The older daughter's boyfriend sneaking behind the father's back to help give him justice for his wife's lover's infidelity.
Greater Seattle area real estate broker that loves to read...or listen.
I would try another book, as it is written and performed well.
Not written it! It's a downer!
Did the best he could!
Not really. The movie's saving grace was George Clooney, or it would have been as bad.
If you're trying to be depressed...read it.
Really great book. It's like looking up one day at your current state in life. Really taking stock of who you are, what you've become, what you've allowed to become and then trying to slowly begin to right the wrongs so that you ultimately end up in a place that's better than you even knew existed. However you had to loose something significant in the process.
Interesting story and one that I have never heard before. But I had two complaints:
1) Unfortunately, the narrator did not do his homework. His pronunciation of words commonly used in Hawai'i was poor. He should have done his homework and asked people who say Hawaiian words and local words how to pronounce them. Really, there's no excuse -- I can't believe he mispronounced poke (POH-keh) to name one of many mistakes.
2) My personal preference would have been for the story to reflect Hawai'i more. This is my bias and not a fault of the book/author. I wanted more Hawai'i and culture of Hawaiians and the local people who live in Hawai'i. There wasn't enough for me.
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