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Moloka’i

July 5, 2007

Moloka'iImagine yourself a young child, living on Oahu, Hawaii during the late 1800’s. One day, your Mother notices a rose colored mark on your skin and before you know it, your whole life is turned upside down. Moloka’i, written by Alan Brennert, transports the reader to a world little known to most of us. After contracting the dreaded leprosy, Rachel Kalama is sent from her family to the island of Moloka’i, where she is quarantined on a leprosy settlement. With only her Uncle Pono, who also has leprosy, with her, Rachel needs to begin her new life on Moloka’i. From her relationship with a nun who struggles herself with ghosts from her past, to the best “girlfriend” who happens to be a transvestite, the author pulls on your heartstrings and rarely lets go.

This piece of historical fiction, while at times heartbreaking and sad, was also very moving and inspirational. Instead of letting her disease beat her and strip her of her dignity, Rachel rises above leprosy and goes on to live a life full of love, family and possibility.

I read Moloka’i along with eight other women for my book club. It made for a really interesting discussion and a popular choice for the club. Next up for the book club is The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. This is a re-read for me and I am really looking forward to discussing it.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. July 5, 2007 5:36 pm

    This looks really interesting. I’ll put it on my must read list which keeps getting longer and longer.

  2. July 5, 2007 8:38 pm

    I happened upon that book several summers ago on a trip to the library. I thought it was enchanting. I couldn’t put it down. If we were going to Maui instead of Kauai later this month, I’d be taking a day trip to Molokai to see it for myself.

  3. July 6, 2007 12:03 pm

    This sounds interesting. I’m going to see if they have it at the library. Thanks for mentioning it!

  4. July 7, 2007 6:45 pm

    Wow! I totally want to get this book. Thanks for the review.

  5. July 9, 2007 10:42 am

    Definately something I would read! Thanks for the great review.

    I loved the Red Tent. Enjoy your re-read 🙂

  6. March 6, 2008 2:49 am

    I think this *is* the first place I heard about this book. I guess I was just lurking at the time, ’cause I don’t see a comment from me. 🙂

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