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Lost Kingdom: Hawaii's Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America's First Imperial Venture

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Lost Kingdom: Hawaii's Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America's First Imperial Venture Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Synopsis:

"Only one American state was formally a sovereign monarchy. In this compelling narrative, the award-winning journalist Julia Flynn Siler chronicles how this Pacific kingdom, creation of a proud Polynesian people, was encountered, annexed, and absorbed." —Kevin Starr, historian, University of Southern California

Around 200 A.D., intrepid Polynesians paddled thousands of miles across the Pacific and arrived at an undisturbed archipelago. For centuries, their descendants lived with almost no contact from the Western world but in 1778 their profound isolation was shattered with the arrival of Captain Cook. Deftly weaving together a memorable cast of characters, Lost Kingdom brings to life the ensuing clash between the vulnerable Polynesian people and the relentlessly expanding capitalist powers. Portraits of royalty, rogues, sugar barons, and missionaries combine into a sweeping tale of the Hawaiian kingdoms rise and fall.

At the center of the story is Lili‘uokalani, the last queen of Hawaii. Born in 1838, she lived through the nearly complete economic transformation of the islands. Lucrative sugar plantations owned almost exclusively by white planters, dubbed the "Sugar Kings," gradually subsumed the majority of the land. Hawaii became a prize in the contest between America, Britain, and France, each of whom were seeking to expand their military and commercial influence in the Pacific.

Lost Kingdom is the tragic story of Lili‘uokalanis family and their fortunes. The monarchy had become a figurehead, victim to manipulation from the wealthy sugar-plantation owners. Upon ascending to the throne, Lili‘uokalani was determined to enact a constitution reinstating the monarchys power but she was outmaneuvered and, in January 1893, U.S. Marines from the USS Boston marched through the streets of Honolulu to the palace. The annexation of Hawaii had begun, ushering in a new century of American imperialism.

About the Author

Julia Flynn Siler is an award-winning journalist. Her book, The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Wine Dynasty, was a New York Times best seller. She has written for Business Week and the New York Times, and is now a contributing writer for the Wall Street Journal in San Francisco.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780802120700
Author:
Siler, Julia Flynn
Publisher:
Grove Press
Author:
Flynn Siler, Julia
Subject:
Modern - 19th Century
Subject:
World History-General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20130131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
415
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Americana » Hawaii
History and Social Science » US History » 19th Century
History and Social Science » World History » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

Lost Kingdom: Hawaii's Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America's First Imperial Venture New Trade Paper
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$16.00 In Stock
Product details 415 pages Grove Press - English 9780802120700 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
"Only one American state was formally a sovereign monarchy. In this compelling narrative, the award-winning journalist Julia Flynn Siler chronicles how this Pacific kingdom, creation of a proud Polynesian people, was encountered, annexed, and absorbed." —Kevin Starr, historian, University of Southern California

Around 200 A.D., intrepid Polynesians paddled thousands of miles across the Pacific and arrived at an undisturbed archipelago. For centuries, their descendants lived with almost no contact from the Western world but in 1778 their profound isolation was shattered with the arrival of Captain Cook. Deftly weaving together a memorable cast of characters, Lost Kingdom brings to life the ensuing clash between the vulnerable Polynesian people and the relentlessly expanding capitalist powers. Portraits of royalty, rogues, sugar barons, and missionaries combine into a sweeping tale of the Hawaiian kingdoms rise and fall.

At the center of the story is Lili‘uokalani, the last queen of Hawaii. Born in 1838, she lived through the nearly complete economic transformation of the islands. Lucrative sugar plantations owned almost exclusively by white planters, dubbed the "Sugar Kings," gradually subsumed the majority of the land. Hawaii became a prize in the contest between America, Britain, and France, each of whom were seeking to expand their military and commercial influence in the Pacific.

Lost Kingdom is the tragic story of Lili‘uokalanis family and their fortunes. The monarchy had become a figurehead, victim to manipulation from the wealthy sugar-plantation owners. Upon ascending to the throne, Lili‘uokalani was determined to enact a constitution reinstating the monarchys power but she was outmaneuvered and, in January 1893, U.S. Marines from the USS Boston marched through the streets of Honolulu to the palace. The annexation of Hawaii had begun, ushering in a new century of American imperialism.

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