Title: A True Princess of Hawai’i
Author: Beth Greenway
Illustrator: Tammy Yee
Publisher: Arbordale Publishing
“A true princess is known by her deeds,”Nani is told in the story section of Beth Greenway’s children’s book, A True Princess of Hawai’i.
~ What ~
This thirty-two unnumbered page paperback with a thick folding jacket cover targets children ages five to eight years old who enjoy educational information about Hawaii’s volcanoes. With a couple of scenes of fiery lava encroaching the town that may concern some young ones, it may be best read out loud to beginner readers due to some complicated wording.
Based on historical events in the late 1800s, this short story is about a young girl named Nani who wants to be a princess, especially when Princess Luka comes to Hawaii to save the town from an erupting volcano. As Luka asks a goddess who lives in the volcano to stop it, Nani learns how to be kind, generous, and thoughtful even though she may not dress like princess.
The last four pages have more educational tools of learning activities for creative minds that involve information about the Pacific Rim of Fire, the factual story of Princess Luka and Mauna Loa, questions regarding facts and fiction, volcanic vocabulary matching, respecting Hawaii’s natural resources, and a map of its many volcanoes.
~ Why ~
This book is a fictional tale of a historical princess, goddess named Pele, compassionate young girl, and a volcano. I like that the underlying lesson learned is about the girl who freely offers an old lady and horse her candy and the princess part of her clothing. I found the informational data at the back of the book for older readers the most interesting. Any child will enjoy looking at the colorful pictures with plenty of details while understanding mighty volcanoes.
~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like stories of potentially dangerous volcanoes may steer away from this educational book, but they may learn a thing or two. Others may not like the tale’s inferences to a goddess or princess who tosses a red cloth into the lava, chants, and sprinkles a bottle on the fire. Some of the educational information may be above the suggest age level.
~ Who ~
Having lived in Hawaii for several years while raising her three daughters, Greenway has authored several books and now lives in Mississippi. Artist Yee is a native of Hawaii and has illustrated more than thirty books.
~ Wish ~
Not knowing Hawaiian folklore or history, I wish the story were told more accurately such as the mentioning that the town prayed instead of the volcano being stopped by Luka and Pele.
~ Want ~
If you are looking for a book about a Hawaiian volcano for preschool to early elementary aged children, this may be a viable option, but the story is fictional.
Thanks to Arbordale Publishing for this complimentary book that I am freely evaluating.
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GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.