Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wai Nani Chiefess of Hawai'i - Allbooks Review

   Thursday, November 27, 2008

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Title: Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawai'i


Author:Linda Ballou



            Hawai'i was a very different place in 1779. Wai-nani is young, impetuous and rebellious. She is, as at home in the water as she is on land and often escapes to the sea where she swims with Eku, her dolphin friend, for solace. The traditions and customs of her people are rigid, and the utmost respect for elders is demanded. Wai-nani has a problem with rules.

            Born of royalty, Wai-nani leaves her home in Hana after an encounter with her male relatives. Her father orders her to marry, but refusing, she escapes to the surf and Eku. After days at sea, she finds herself on an island. This is the thinking place of Makaha, a young but fearless warrior. Wai-nani and Makaha soon become lovers. He is called away to fight, but Wai-nani follows. She arrives in the court of Lako, where she befriends his daughter Huali. Will Makaha return and claim her as his wife?

            The future holds many challenges for Wai-nani. Her failure to produce offspring for Makaha, sends him to another woman. Will  she always be the "never fading flower of his heart?"  Will she rise in the ranks to become one of the most powerful women of the time?


            Linda Ballou has lived in Alaska, California and the Hawaiian Islands. She has used her familiarity with the landscapes and the people of these locations in her writing. She has a degree in English Literature. You can read more at:


Author Linda Ballou's talent shines in this novel, her in depth research is beyond reproach. The Hawaiian culture is filled with mores and customs and this author has done her best to include most of them. This reviewer did find this slightly overdone at times, making reading tedious, however, that said, the reader is definitely made to understand all that influenced the characters in their actions. Well- written, excellent educational story, definitely recommended by reviewer: Shirley A. Roe


Title: Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawai'i

Author: Linda Ballou

Publisher: Star Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-932993-88-2

Pages: 277

 Price: $ 17.95

Nov. 2008


Author Interview


Please state your name and location.  (city and State or Province, Country)


Linda Ballou-Los Angeles, California USA



Tell us the title and publisher of your book: Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawai'i- Her Epic Journey



Tell us about yourself:


Blessed with a double dose of genetic wanderlust, I love to explore. When I was thirteen, my pioneering parents took me to Alaska, where I became firmly grounded in nature. From there I journeyed to proud California, where I obtained a Bachelor's Degree in English Literature at the state University of Northridge and a Doctorate in urban savvy. My debut novel, Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawaii is the culmination of a long-standing love affair with the Hawaiian Islands. A free-lance writer, based in Los Angeles, I'm having a great deal of fun collecting stories for my soon to be published travel collection Lost Angel Walkabout.         




When was the book released? May 2008





Give us an overview of your book.


Wai-nani: High Chiefess of Hawai'i – Her Epic Journey   is an historical novel couched in magical realism set in pre-contact Hawai'i. Wai-nani's character is inspired by the personage of Ka'ahumanu, the favorite wife of Kamehameha the Great, who was responsible for ending the 2,000-year-old Polynesian "kapu system." The turbulent romance of these Hawaiian icons is set against the backdrop of Hawai'i's most dynamic period between 1740 and 1820. Captain James Cook arrived in 1778. Cook's visit triggered change that facilitated forces already set in play by Kamehameha, the warrior prophesied at birth to bring the splintered Island people under one rule. Precocious Ka'ahumanu is revered by some as the loving "Mother of the people" and remembered by others as the "flaw that brought down chiefdom."


Wai-nani embodies all that was good in ancient Polynesian society. Athletic, assertive, and brave she stands beside her warrior-king husband sharing in his joys and sorrows for forty years. Like all Hawaiians, she is a water baby—finding strength, solace and wisdom in the sea. Her greatest pleasure is swimming with her wild dolphin friend, Eku. Throughout her life, she rails against the "kapu system" that calls for human sacrifices, separate eating-houses for men and women, and severe penalties for the slightest infractions of laws imposed upon the common people by ruling chiefs and priests vested with the power of gods. She triumphs and becomes the most powerful woman in old Hawaii.




What inspired you to write this book?


My love affair with Ka'ahumanu's story began when I lived on Kauai nearly thirty years ago. As a young woman trying to find my own way, I identified with the struggles of Ka'ahumanu breaking through the barriers of her culture. I saw her as the forerunner of the modern woman—brave, independent athletic and assertive. She stood beside her warrior-king husband throughout his tumultuous rise to power. Even she was childless and he had 31 wives she remained his friend and main consort. The royal couple made a most romantic picture as they rode monster waves together. She was a healing kahu, or teacher and held great wisdom about plants used as medicines and healing rituals. On his death bed, Kamehameha made her the first woman "prime minister" of Hawaii. She used her power to end the two-thousand year old kapu system that called for human sacrifice to pagan gods.  Wai-nani's story ends in 1819 one year before the landing of missionaries. The culture vacuum in Hawaii at the time of their arrival made fertile soil for them to plant the seeds of Christianity.





How is your book different from other books in this genre?


My story is different because it is written in first person and brings the modern reader into the hearts and minds of a people without a written history. I try to help people understand the reasons behind the Hawaiian practices and what brought about events of their time. I weave chants, mythology and legends throughout the text and mimic the rhythm and poetry of the Hawaiian language in the narrative. This story is a portal into a world you can not reach any other way.






Where can people buy your book? At my site you may receive an autographed copy shipped free anywhere in the world.

It is also available on all major online distribution sites like Barnes and and as well as You can also order at your local bookstore.



Are you working on another book? If so when do you expect it to be published? Yes. I am working feverishly to get my collection of travel essays out. I have about eighteen so far.  There will be eco-alerts scattered throughout the text letting people know about the threats to a given region.  Since I am one of the 14 million angels lost to the city of Los Angeles, my title will be Lost Angel Walkabout.


If you self published, what advice can you give to fellow writers?


You must put forth the most professional product you possibly can. Hire an editor to fine tune your manuscript.  Shop around for your publisher. I chose Star, a boutique publisher that gives a lot of special attention to their authors that includes a custom illustration for your cover. I felt that was important for me to market my story.


You must have a budget and a plan for getting your book noticed. You must have a platform. That is a website with some writing credits and creative ways to let people see who you are. Once you have your site up and running you can link virtual book tours, post interviews, and radio interviews on your media page. Go to my site and see what I am talking about.


 Do your research before embarking in this journey so you can hit the ground running when your book does come out.  I think Brent Sampson's How to sell your book on Amazon is a good one along with the Frugal Book Promoter.




Can you share one of your marketing successes with us?


I'm proud to say Wai-nani is now sailing to Hawaii in the libraries of the Princess Cruise lines. Maybe next year they will want me to join her!


My virtual book tour, arranged by Denise Cassino, my web master who has gone full tilt book publicist, garnered half dozen internet radios shows and lots of great write ups! Just "google" my name or Wai-nani's and you will see how much she has done for me.


How did you find Allbooks Review and what are you hoping for in your relationship with us?

 I think I was poking around and found AllBooks Review. I liked the fact that you provide international exposure. My story takes place in Hawaii. I just got through writing an article for Korean Air Inflight Magazine called "Heavenly Hawaii." I know that people all over the world love Hawaii.  Reading Wai-nani will greatly enhance anyone's visit to the Islands.


Was the low cost a surprise? What other things would you like Allbooks Review to offer writers?


Yes. I very much liked the very reasonable, all-inclusive price that provided me with more than one outlet of exposure. I liked the sustained coverage for one year. I loved the idea that my book might be included in an interactive CD to libraries. Reviewer, Shirley Roe, confirmed that my book is not just entertaining it is educational.  I felt I was getting more bang for my carefully allocated bucks.



Thank you for this interview and best of luck with your book.





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