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Authors: Kiana Davenport

Tags: #Hawaii, #Historical Fiction

House of Many Gods

BOOK: House of Many Gods
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Praise for

KIANA DAVENPORT

HOUSE OF MANY GODS

“A powerful and moving experience.”


Washington Post

“This is a lush, ambitious novel that delves deeply into familial conflict and forgiveness and offers a fascinating glimpse into the beauty and contradictions of native Hawaiian culture.”


Publishers Weekly

“Davenport mines the depths of emotion.… Readers who enjoy a
Doctor Zhivago
-like saga will appreciate the broad scope of this novel.”

—Library Journal

“Richly textured … Her use of language is tender, lush and powerful; her fully formed characters each have a unique personality. Reading this novel was a sensual experience.”


The Brown BookLoft


House of Many Gods
is a big and powerful book in its own class.”

—Small Spiral Notebook

SONG OF THE EXILE

“The strengths of this novel are many. Davenport is a superb storyteller. She always keeps her readers engaged in her novel’s story and caring about her characters.”

—The Seattle Times

“Deeply moving … You can’t read Kiana Davenport without being transformed.”

—A
LICE
W
ALKER

“A historical novel in the most vibrant sense of the term,
Song of the Exile
brings the past alive with grace and subtlety.”

—Baltimore
Sun

“Davenport’s prose is as sharp and shining as a sword, yet her sense of poetry and love of nature permeate each line.”

—I
SABEL
A
LLENDE

ALSO BY KIANA DAVENPORT

Shark Dialogues
Song of the Exile

House of Many Gods
is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places,
and incidents are the products of the author’s imagination or are
used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or
persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

2007 Ballantine Books Trade Paperback Edition

Copyright © 2006 by Kiana Davenport
Maps copyright © 2006 by David Lindroth, Inc.
Reading group guide copyright © 2007 by Random House, Inc.

All rights reserved.

Published in the United States by Ballantine Books, an imprint of
The Random House Publishing Group, a division of Random
House, Inc., New York.

B
ALLANTINE
and colophon are registered trademarks
of Random House, Inc.
R
EADER’S
C
IRCLE
and colophon are trademarks
of Random House, Inc.

Originally published in hardcover in the United States by
Ballantine Books, an imprint of The Random House Publishing
Group, a division of Random House, Inc., in 2006.

Portions of this book originally appeared in “Bones of the Inner
Ear”:
Story Magazine, The O. Henry Awards Prize Stories
(Anchor
Books, New York, 2000) and
The Best American Short Stories
(Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 2000).

Grateful acknowledgment is made to Darhansoff, Verrill, Feldman
Literary Agents for permission to reprint two poems from
Poems of
Akhmatova
by Anna Akhmatova, translated by Stanley Kunitz and
Max Hayward, copyright © 1967, 1968, 1972, 1973. Reprinted by
permission of Darhansoff, Verrill, Feldman Literary Agents.

eISBN: 978-0-345-51545-2

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Davenport, Kiana.
House of many gods : a novel / Kiana Davenport.
p.   cm.
1. Hawaii—Fiction. I. Title.
PS3554.A88H68  2006
813′.54—dc22            2005048174

www.thereaderscircle.com

v3.1

To my beloved cousin,
Rosemond Kehau Aho

To Anita and Robert Yantorno

And to the memory of Rostov Anadyr,
who disappeared

PULE HO‘OLA‘A HALE

E ‘oki i ka piko o ka hale …

He hale noho ho‘i no ke kanaka …

Oia ke ola au e ke akua—amama ua noa.

E Kū, E Kāne, E Lono

Ku‘ua mai i ke ola …

(HOUSE DEDICATION PRAYER)

Cut the umbilical cord of this house …

A house for man to dwell in …

Let this be the life granted to us by the gods.

O Kū, O Kāne, O Lono

Let down the gift of life …

—from THE POLYNESIAN FAMILY
SYSTEM IN KA‘U, HAWAI‘I.
By M
ARY
K
AWENA
P
UKUI
and C
RAIGHILL
H
ANDY

I drink to our ruined house …

to lying lips that have betrayed us …

and to the hard realities:

that the world is brutal and coarse,

that God in fact has not saved us.

—A
NNA
A
KHMATOVA
, “The Last Toast,”
Poems of Akhmatova

Translated by Stanley Kunitz

Contents
PART ONE
KE ALA KE OLA
 
The Road of Life
PUNAHELE
Favored Child

WAI’ANAE COAST, 1964

M
ORNING, THE AIR ASTONISHINGLY CLEAR
. T
HE SKY SO UNBLEMISHED
and wide, there is divinity in the light. Sun and heat already strong, the shapes of all things are revealed. Old roosters crowing, shopkeepers yawning, rolling back iron window grilles. The absolute poise of women with blood-leaping grace walking dusty roads to market
.

BOOK: House of Many Gods
12.69Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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