- May 26 & 27 - All libraries CLOSED for Memorial Day
Most readers know that Stephen King's novels usually take place in the state of Maine, where the novel Olive Kitteridge (2008), by Elizabeth Strout also takes place, but King broke out of the mold with the popular Duma Key (2008),which takes place in Florida. Many novels take place in New York, both city and state.
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2005), by Jonathan Safran Foer, a moving 9/11 novel, features a child as the main character. Most of the Agent Pendergrast series of novels by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, such as Cemetery Dance (2009), start in New York City as well, while also visiting, among other sites, Prendergast's childhood home in New Orleans, Louisiana. Gone Tomorrow (2009), one of Lee Child's best thrillers, also takes place in New York.
Moving West, Jeannette Walls' novel, Half-Broke Horses (2009), is based on her grandmother's incredible life growing up in Texas and Arizona. Alaska is featured in the mysteries of Dana Stabenow and in a bleak new novel about marriage and relationships, Caribou Island (2011), by David Vann. Finally, the "granddaddy" of all writers of novels about states, James Michener, wrote one of the best ever, Hawaii (1959).
If you can't catch that flight to Hawaii this month take a virtual trip from the comfort of your own favorite reading chair and download this great travel guide: Frommer's Hawaii 2010. Of course Cost Free! Will work 24/7 at no additional change in pay for services rendered. :o) This guide will help you explore the Hawaiian Islands history, flowers, beaches, famous falls like Akaka Falls on the big island and so much more. Did you ever want to know what the Hula movements meant? This will give you a brief description and have you doing the hula at home! You can download so much more than books. Try video and music as well and enjoy. Aloha
Thinking of a warm and balmy Christmas where the trees don't lose their leaves or the frost doesn't nibble at your toes (at least on Oahu) or you can lie out on the beach? Hawaii might be the answer!!! If you don't like the warmth, Hawaii might still be the answer. Olympic skiers like to practice on top of Mauna Kea on the Big Island. Yes, Hawaii has snow and some of the best skiing around! Go once for the warmth and twice for the snow! Hana hou!
Oahu has a beautiful Christmas display in downtown Honolulu by the mayor's residence, Honolulu Hale. Hale means house in Hawaiian. I remember an annual display where religions with a December holiday had their own area to display their special decorations including displays for Bodhi Day, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, etc. During December, I also remember running (actually walking!) in a Holiday Fun Run with my co-workers; I dressed as a present and sang holiday songs. I worked with a very musically ambitious group of people when I worked in Hawaii. Every Thursday at lunch, we would walk around in Waikiki from hotel to hotel. We would play the ukulele and sing holiday songs in the lobbies to entertain guests. Actually, we did this all year, but it was especially enjoyable around the holidays when all the hotel lobbies were decorated with holiday cheer!
Family is very big in Hawaii. In Hawaii, the whole ohana (grandparents, parents, cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.) celebrate the December holidays during two weeks of fun. But in Hawaii, the bigger holiday is New Year's! Because of the large Japanese-American population, New Year's is a big holiday with fireworks, food, and making mochi. On New Year's Eve, families make mochi (rice cakes) and serve special new year's food like red fish and New Year's soup. Broke 'da mouth (pidgin English for "delicious".) All of the traditions relate to getting luck in the new year. At the strike of 12am on New Year's Eve, everyone sets off fireworks (when it was legal.) I remember people setting off 50,000 to 100,000 strings of fireworks! Wow, you couldn't hear yourself think at 12am! In Hawaii, no one watches Dick Clark's New Year's Eve show!
Anyway, when you go to Hawaii during the holidays, there are a lot of "local" things to see outside of those luaus, beaches, or the Polynesian Center. Hang out with the locals and check out what the locals do! For a general idea of travel in Hawaii, check out our Hawaii guidebooks.