Every year around this time the Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association get together to celebrate the best in local publishing over the past year. It seemed fitting for Hawaiʻi’s biggest literary award night to be hosted at the Hawaii State Library which is celebrating a hundred years of serving the people of Hawaiʻi. Many deserving books won awards tonight, although there were a few surprises including at least one unanswered peculiarity.
This year’s event was also not without a few hassles—it was a horrible traffic day on top of being incredibly hot and muggy, and there were a few acoustical missteps during the ceremony. Thankfully, things settled down once the sun went down and the wind picked up a little. The setup was simple but elegant in the Library’s courtyard—I remarked that it was more of a Golden Globes affair with tabled seating for the entire event. One of our favorites, Choco Leʻa, also made an inspiring cameo and the pūpū they had on hand was delicious. All in all, it was another fine event.
And now…here is your list of winners and honorable mentions for the 2013 Ka Palapala Poʻokela Awards:[gn_divider]
Excellence in Children’s Literature
- Winner – A Coconut Named Bob by Austin Weaver, illustrated by Don Robinson (Island Heritage Publishing)
- Hon. Mention – For unknown reasons, no honorable mention was selected from among the more than worthy nominees.
Excellence in Hawaiian Language, History and Culture
There were two winners in this category and as a result, no honorable mention was chosen.
- Winner (tie) – Ancestry of Experience: A Journey into Hawaiian Ways of Knowing by Leilani Holmes (University of Hawaiʻi Press)
- Winner (tie) – Kalaupapa: A Collective Memory by Anwei Skinsnes Law (University of Hawaiʻi Press)
Excellence in Literature
- Winner – Boi No Good by Chris McKinney (Mutual Publishing)
- Hon. Mention – Wipeout! & Hanging Ten in Paris by Chip Hughes (Slate Ridge Press)
Excellence in Natural Science
- Winner – Loulu: The Hawaiian Palm by Donald R. Hodel (University of Hawaiʻi Press)
- Hon. Mention – In The Beginning: Archipelago The Origin and Discovery of the Hawaiian Islands by Dr. Richard W. Grigg (Island Heritage Publishing)
Excellence in Illustration/Photography
- Winner – Ili Nā Hoʻomanaʻo o Kalaupapa: Casting Remembrances of Kalaupapa by Anwei Skinses Law and Valerie Monson, photography by Wayne Levin (Pacific Historic Parks)
- Hon. Mention – Engraved at the Lahainaluna Seminary, 1834-1844 by David W. Forbes (Hawaiian Mission Children’s)
Excellence in Cookbooks
- Winner – A Splash of Aloha by Kapiolani Community College (Watermark Publishing)
- Hon. Mention – Little Hawaiian Lilikoi Cookbook by Gail Hercher (Mutual Publishing)
Excellence in Special-Interest Books
- Winner – The ‘Ukulele: A History by Jim Tranquada and John King (University of Hawai‘i Press)
- Hon. Mention – Gentleman Ed Francis Presents 50th State Big Time Wrestling by Edmund C. Francis with Larry Fleece (Watermark Publishing)
Excellence in Nonfiction
- Winner – I Respectfully Dissent: A Biography of Edward H. Nakamura by Tom Coffman (University of Hawai‘i Press)
- Hon. Mention – Kalaupapa: A Collective Memory by Anwei Skinsnes Law (University of Hawaiʻi Press)
Excellence in Design
- Winner – Engraved at the Lahainaluna Seminary, 1834-1844 by David W. Forbes (Hawaiian Mission Children’s)
- Hon. Mention – Ili Nā Hoʻomanaʻo o Kalaupapa: Casting Remembrances of Kalaupapa by Anwei Skinses Law and Valerie Monson, photography by Wayne Levin (Pacific Historic Parks)
Excellence in “Aloha from beyond the Sea”
- Winner – The Queen and I: A Story of Dispossessions and Reconnections in Hawaiʻi by Sydney Lehua Iaukea (University of California Press)
- Hon. Mention – Aloha, Mozart by Waimea Williams (Luminis Books)
Samuel M. Kamakau Award for Hawai’i Book of the Year
- Winner – Kalaupapa: A Collective Memory by Anwei Skinsnes Law (University of Hawaiʻi Press)
We would like to congratulate all of the authors, illustrators, designers and publishers on their extraordinary achievements. Thanks to the Hawaii State Library and its dedicated librarians for hosting the awards ceremony, and the Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association for another great year of local books. As always, we hope to see even more excellent books out of Hawaiʻi next year!