10 books like Moloka'i

By Alan Brennert,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Moloka'i. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Zorba the Greek

By Nikos Kazantzakis,

Book cover of Zorba the Greek

I love this tale narrated by a young academic who teams up with an exuberant, older working man named Zorba, “a passionate lover of wine, women and song” ...and dance. The younger man is more of a staid introvert. They are in a village in Crete to develop a mine. Their interactions are both amusing and philosophical. This contrasts with one horrific event where the appalled narrator struggles to understand the village’s moral codes which conflict with his own. In the final scene as he comes out of his shell, he asks Zorba to teach him to dance.

This is one of my favorite all-time novels. Kazantzakis words are to be savored.

Zorba the Greek

By Nikos Kazantzakis,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Zorba the Greek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This moving fable sees a young Greek writer set out to Crete to claim a small inheritance. But when he arrives, he meets Alexis Zorba, a middle-aged Greek man with a zest for life. Zorba has had a family and many lovers, has fought in the Balkan wars, has lived and loved - he is a simple but deep man who lives every moment fully and without shame. As their friendship develops, he is gradually won over, transformed and inspired along with the reader.

Zorba the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis' most popular and enduring novel, has its origins in the author's…


The Poisonwood Bible

By Barbara Kingsolver,

Book cover of The Poisonwood Bible

This book would stand out because of the gorgeous prose alone. But when you add in a multi-layered story of an American family torn apart by hubris in the African jungle, you get a true masterpiece. The novel’s premise is provocative—a family of daughters living in post-colonial Africa with a narcissistic father intent on converting the natives to his perverse, non-yielding brand of religion. And as expected, this is a story that is tragic and epic in a way that makes you question the arrogance of humanity in all its iterations. But what makes it especially memorable is how it provokes a grim satisfaction when the four daughters make lives out of the mess of a patriarchal disaster, while having little impact on the beautifully indomitable Africa.

The Poisonwood Bible

By Barbara Kingsolver,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Poisonwood Bible as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**NOW INCLUDING THE FIRST CHAPTER OF DEMON COPPERHEAD: THE NEW BARBARA KINGSOLVER NOVEL**

**DEMON COPPERHEAD IS AVAILABLE NOW FOR PRE-ORDER**

An international bestseller and a modern classic, this suspenseful epic of one family's tragic undoing and their remarkable reconstruction has been read, adored and shared by millions around the world.

'Breathtaking.' Sunday Times
'Exquisite.' The Times
'Beautiful.' Independent
'Powerful.' New York Times

This story is told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959.

They carry with them everything they believe they will…


A Long Petal of the Sea

By Isabel Allende, Nick Caistor (translator), Amanda Hopkinson (translator)

Book cover of A Long Petal of the Sea

This story starts in Spain’s Civil War but immigrates to Chile. I have two reasons to be attracted to this book. First I grew up in South America and so am drawn to this setting, but second I had a writing mentor who was a small boy during the Franco regime. (I published his story in my blog.)

An exodus of thousands of Spaniards escaped into France and Cristian Zozaya was separated from his parents for years until they were able to immigrate to South America. His story echoes the beginning of Allende’s, except hers is about adult refugees in a marriage of convenience. The protagonists face trials in Chile with yet another dictatorship, but the ending is pleasing.

A Long Petal of the Sea

By Isabel Allende, Nick Caistor (translator), Amanda Hopkinson (translator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Long Petal of the Sea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

_______________ THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER _______________ 'A powerful love story spanning generations... Full of ambition and humanity' - Sunday Times 'One of the strongest and most affecting works in Allende's long career' - New York Times Book Review _______________ On September 3, 1939, the day of the Spanish exiles' splendid arrival in Chile, the Second World War broke out in Europe. Victor Dalmau is a young doctor when he is caught up in the Spanish Civil War, a tragedy that leaves his life - and the fate of his country - forever changed. Together with…


The Coconut Latitudes

By Rita M. Gardner,

Book cover of The Coconut Latitudes: Secrets, Storms, and Survival in the Caribbean

After a blogger in Thailand interviewed me, he told me I should meet the author Rita Gardner, “Her memoir is about growing up in a Latin culture like yourself.” Rita and I exchanged books and personal stories, but her upbringing was darker than mine.

The young family moves to a remote village on a beach in the Dominican Republic in the 1950s. The two daughters are not only isolated, but their alcoholic father rants and makes irrational demands while the mother does nothing to protect them. During the light of day the dad proclaims them a “happy family, living in Paradise.” The writing is honest and captivatingYou will root for Rita and be flabbergasted at what a young girl accomplishes on her own.

The Coconut Latitudes

By Rita M. Gardner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Coconut Latitudes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gold Medal Winner, Autobiography/Memoir, 2015 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards.

Rita is an infant when her father leaves a successful career in the US to live in "paradise"-a seaside village in the Dominican Republic. The Coconut Latitudes is her haunting, lyrical memoir of surviving a reality far from the envisioned Eden-and of the terrible cost of keeping secrets.


Kolea

By Russell Cahill,

Book cover of Kolea

This novel is like a wild ride on the ocean. I loved how it took me into the Indigenous communities in the Hawai’ian Islands prior to contact with Europeans and revealed their longstanding links to the Pacific coast of North America. There’s an epic story, and it’s chock full of marvelous detail about culture, food, clothing, migration, and worldview, and even explores the nature of time. However, what most struck me was considering what it would be like to orient my thinking to the sea and its rhythms instead of the land. It shifted the way I see the place I live.   

Kolea

By Russell Cahill,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Kolea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

To paradise they sailed—

There once was a world where hula dancers were experts at spear fighting, where a blind warrior taught his students healing arts...

where adventure ruled—

...as well as savage fighting. And where young people could build and sail a canoe on voyages to unknown lands.

where danger waited...

That world was Hawai’i.

The illegitimate child of Maui’s King, Kolea, is spirited away to Molokai and raised in seclusion by a mysterious Hula Dancer and a blind warrior. Trained as a warrior, he is pursued by his evil half-brother.

A daring escape in a voyaging canoe leads…


Pandemic

By Robin Cook,

Book cover of Pandemic

Pandemic includes my two favorite themes: molecular biology and viral infections. It introduces a problem I’ve seen discussed in a scientific journal. If a gene editing tool (CRISPR/Cas 9) is used to raise pigs whose hearts have important human proteins so they are recognized as “self” by a human’s immune system, the waiting lists for heart transplants would be a thing of the past. However, a virus, avirulent in the pig but fatal to people, could accidentally be carried along with those hearts. The ensuing coverups make things exponentially worse.

Pandemic

By Robin Cook,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pandemic as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New York Times-bestselling author Robin Cook takes on the cutting-edge world of gene-modification in this pulse-pounding new medical thriller.

When an unidentified, seemingly healthy young woman collapses suddenly on the New York City subway and dies upon reaching the hospital, her case is an eerie reminder for veteran medical examiner Jack Stapleton of the 1918 flu pandemic. Fearful of a repeat on the one hundredth anniversary of the nightmarish contagion, Jack autopsies the woman within hours of her demise and discovers some striking anomalies: first, that she has had a heart transplant, and second, that, against all odds, her DNA…


The Second Life of Mirielle West

By Amanda Skenandore,

Book cover of The Second Life of Mirielle West

Amanda Skenandore’s beautiful and insightful novel about a silent film star who was sent to live in a Louisiana Leper Colony in the 1920s. The book is rich and full of surprising historical details. While it might seem like a downer – it is funny and heartwarming, with a beautiful coming-of-age story and romance at its heart.  Absolutely fascinating.

The Second Life of Mirielle West

By Amanda Skenandore,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Second Life of Mirielle West as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The glamorous world of a silent film star’s wife abruptly crumbles when she’s forcibly quarantined at the Carville Lepers Home in this page-turning story of courage, resilience, and reinvention set in 1920s Louisiana and Los Angeles. Based on little-known history, this timely book will strike a chord with readers of Fiona Davis, Tracey Lange, and Marie Benedict.
 
Based on the true story of America’s only leper colony, The Second Life of Mirielle West brings vividly to life the Louisiana institution known as Carville, where thousands of people were stripped of their civil rights, branded as lepers, and forcibly quarantined throughout…


My Name Is Mary Sutter

By Robin Oliveira,

Book cover of My Name Is Mary Sutter

I love historical novels, love learning about the past and what the past teaches us about today. Mary Sutter dreams of becoming a surgeon at a time when both men and women looked down on a female who dreamed outside her prescribed role. I admire how she fights through all the denouncers. What also interests me is her recognition of internal demons. Who doesn’t have those? I didn’t have my sights on becoming a doctor, but I’ve always wanted to be a writer. My studying writing in college seemed wasteful and elitist to naysayers. Even now, with three novels, I get patronizing looks as though I ought to be doing something more valuable with my time. As though writing is somehow an affront to people who hold real, 8-5 jobs.    

My Name Is Mary Sutter

By Robin Oliveira,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked My Name Is Mary Sutter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A moving, New York Times bestselling novel about a young Civil War midwife who dreams of becoming a surgeon

Chosen by Good Housekeeping as a Top 10 Good Read

Mary Sutter's story continues in Winter Sisters, coming February 2018 from Viking

Fans of Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks, Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier, and Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker by Jennifer Chiaverini will love this New York Times bestselling Civil War tale.

Mary Sutter is a brilliant young midwife who dreams of becoming a surgeon. Eager to run away from recent heartbreak, Mary travels to Washington, D.C., to help tend the legions…


Black Notice

By Patricia Cornwell,

Book cover of Black Notice

You don’t necessarily have to like an author to admire their grasp of the subject matter and few writers have a better slab-side manner than Cornwell. She knows her stuff and you can perhaps forgive her the smartarsery that she can’t resist. But she does go out of her way to give the victims and their families closure. 

Black Notice

By Patricia Cornwell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Black Notice as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this #1 New York Times bestseller Dr. Kay Scarpetta is on a deadly mission that will pull her in two opposite directions: toward protecting her career or toward the truth...

Remains were all that was left of the stowaway. He arrived in Richmond's Deep Water Terminal-the ghastly cargo of a ship from Belgium. The decomposed body gives Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta no clues to its identity-or the cause of death. But an odd tattoo soon leads her on an international search to Interpol's headquarters in Lyon, France-and towards a confrontation with one of the most savage killers…


Creative Care

By Anne Basting,

Book cover of Creative Care: A Revolutionary Approach to Dementia and Elder Care

Among my prescriptions to caregivers – especially those who struggle to find meaning and in creating a typical day that is safe, social, and engaged – is Anne Basting’s book. Basting, a theater arts professor, makes a persuasive case that upends the usual and customary approaches to caring for persons living with dementia. Her central premise is this: Together, caregivers and patients can create. She offers concrete ideas and steps to address some of the most vexing challenges such as when a patient asks the whereabouts of a long-ago deceased relative.

Creative Care

By Anne Basting,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Creative Care as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A MacArthur Genius Grant recipient pioneers a radical change in how we interact with older loved ones, especially those experiencing dementia, as she introduces a proven method that uses the creative arts to bring light and joy to the lives of elders.

In Creative Care, Anne Basting lays the groundwork for a widespread transformation in our approach to elder care and uses compelling, touching stories to inspire and guide us all-family, friends, and health professionals-in how to connect and interact with those living with dementia.

A MacArthur Genius Grant recipient, Basting tells the story of how she pioneered a radical…


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