Signed Edition Sweepstakes
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Interviews | September 2, 2014

Jill Owens: IMG David Mitchell: The Powells.com Interview



David MitchellDavid Mitchell's newest mind-bending, time-skipping novel may be his most accomplished work yet. Written in six sections, one per decade, The Bone... Continue »
  1. $21.00 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    The Bone Clocks

    David Mitchell 9781400065677

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$9.95
List price: $15.00
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

More copies of this ISBN

The Descendants

by

The Descendants Cover

ISBN13: 9780812977820
ISBN10: 0812977823
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

Only 1 left in stock at $9.95!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Narrated in a bold, fearless, hilarious voice and set against the lush, panoramic backdrop of Hawaii, The Descendants is a stunning debut novel about an unconventional family forced to come together and re-create its own legacy.

Matthew King was once considered one of the most fortunate men in Hawaii. His missionary ancestors were financially and culturally progressive — one even married a Hawaiian princess, making Matt a royal descendant and one of the state's largest landowners.

Now his luck has changed. His two daughters are out of control: Ten-year-old Scottie is a smart-ass with a desperate need for attention, and seventeen-year-old Alex, a former model, is a recovering drug addict. Matt's charismatic, thrill-seeking, high-maintenance wife, Joanie, lies in a coma after a boat-racing accident and will soon be taken off life support. The Kings can hardly picture life without her, but as they come to terms with this tragedy, their sadness is mixed with a sense of freedom that shames them — and spurs them into surprising actions.

Before honoring Joanie's living will, Matt must gather her friends and family to say their final goodbyes, a difficult situation made worse by the sudden discovery that there is one person who hasn't been told: the man with whom Joanie had been having an affair, quite possibly the one man she ever truly loved. Forced to examine what he owes not only to the living but to the dead, Matt takes to the road with his daughters to find his wife's lover, a memorable journey that leads to both painful revelations and unforeseen humor and growth.

Review:

"So many issues to chew on, and Hemmings articulates Matt's frustration and reluctant sense of responsibility with clarity and wit....[A] smart, well-paced exploration of a once-clueless father finally finding his place in his family and land." The Portland Oregonian

Review:

"With beautiful and blunt prose, Hemmings explores the emotional terrain of grief, promising something far more fulfilling than paradise at its end." San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"Evincing a sublimely mature style and beguiling command of theme and setting, Hemmings' virtuoso performance offers a piquantly tender and winsomely comic portrait of a singular family's revealing response to tragedy." Booklist

Review:

"Hemmings' talent as a writer, a shaper of an indelible story and characters, is both affecting and clear." Philadelphia Inquirer

Review:

"[An] audaciously comic début....Hemmings channels the voice of her befuddled middle-aged hero with virtuosity, as he teeters between acerbic and sentimental, scoffing at himself even as he grasps for redemption." The New Yorker

Review:

"Story writer Kaui Hart Hemmings has published a first novel with a family as wealthy as any that will appear in serious fiction this season, and as flat-out unhappy....It's a fine debut." Dallas Morning News

Review:

"Hemmings is a determinedly unsentimental writer, and she manages her hazardous subject matter...in a dry, understated way, subverting her characters without reducing them utterly....[H]er comic sense is finely honed in this refreshingly wry debut novel." Joanna Kavenna, The New York Times Book Review

Synopsis:

Narrated in a bold, fearless, unforgettable voice and set against the lush, panoramic backdrop of Hawaii, The Descendants is a stunning debut novel about an unconventional family forced to come together and re-create its own legacy.

Matthew King was once considered one of the most fortunate men in Hawaii. His missionary ancestors were financially and culturally progressive–one even married a Hawaiian princess, making Matt a royal descendant and one of the state’s largest landowners.

Now his luck has changed. His two daughters are out of control: Ten-year-old Scottie is a smart-ass with a desperate need for attention, and seventeen-year-old Alex, a former model, is a recovering drug addict. Matt’s charismatic, thrill-seeking, high-maintenance wife, Joanie, lies in a coma after a boat-racing accident and will soon be taken off life support. The Kings can hardly picture life without her, but as they come to terms with this tragedy, their sadness is mixed with a sense of freedom that shames them–and spurs them into surprising actions.

Before honoring Joanie’s living will, Matt must gather her friends and family to say their final goodbyes, a difficult situation made worse by the sudden discovery that there is one person who hasn’t been told: the man with whom Joanie had been having an affair, quite possibly the one man she ever truly loved. Forced to examine what he owes not only to the living but to the dead, Matt takes to the road with his daughters to find his wife’s lover, a memorable journey that leads to both painful revelations and unforeseen humor and growth.

About the Author

Kaui Hart Hemmings is the author of the critically acclaimed short-story collection House of Thieves. Her work has been published in Zoetrope, Best American New Voices, and Best American Nonrequired Reading. Hemmings grew up in Hawaii and lives with her husband and daughter in San Francisco.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

scotts, June 11, 2012 (view all comments by scotts)
It is a rare treat to find a book that tackles marriage, infidelity, death, and parenting in one ambitious story. Rarer still to find a novel that does so with humor, grace, and wisdom. But, that is exactly what Kaui Hart Hemmings provides in The Descendants. A remarkable story told from a father's point-of-view as he deals with the issues that make our lives so interesting and intense. The novel reads almost as a road trip as we follow Matt King through a difficult few weeks dealing with his two daughters, the sale of a family trust, and the final days of his wife's life. The sparse writing matches the character perfectly, and the observational humor keeps the characters (and story) from taking itself too seriously. Over too soon, I could not put this book down. Hemmings is a fresh voice and a genuine pleasure to read.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(2 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780812977820
Author:
Hemmings, Kaui Hart
Publisher:
Random House Trade
Subject:
General
Subject:
Death
Subject:
Family
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Family saga
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literature-Family Life
Copyright:
Edition Number:
Reprint ed.
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
May 2008
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8 x 5.2 x 0.7 in 0.5 lb

Other books you might like

  1. Every Last Cuckoo
    Used Trade Paper $2.95
  2. For the Relief of Unbearable Urges:... Used Trade Paper $3.95
  3. Life & Times of Michael K Used Trade Paper $7.50
  4. Elected Member Used Mass Market $5.95
  5. Loving Frank: A Novel
    Used Trade Paper $1.95
  6. Outlander Sale Trade Paper $7.98

Related Subjects

» BLOCKED
» Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
» Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Family Life
» History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture

The Descendants Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Random House Trade - English 9780812977820 Reviews:
"Review" by , "So many issues to chew on, and Hemmings articulates Matt's frustration and reluctant sense of responsibility with clarity and wit....[A] smart, well-paced exploration of a once-clueless father finally finding his place in his family and land."
"Review" by , "With beautiful and blunt prose, Hemmings explores the emotional terrain of grief, promising something far more fulfilling than paradise at its end."
"Review" by , "Evincing a sublimely mature style and beguiling command of theme and setting, Hemmings' virtuoso performance offers a piquantly tender and winsomely comic portrait of a singular family's revealing response to tragedy."
"Review" by , "Hemmings' talent as a writer, a shaper of an indelible story and characters, is both affecting and clear."
"Review" by , "[An] audaciously comic début....Hemmings channels the voice of her befuddled middle-aged hero with virtuosity, as he teeters between acerbic and sentimental, scoffing at himself even as he grasps for redemption."
"Review" by , "Story writer Kaui Hart Hemmings has published a first novel with a family as wealthy as any that will appear in serious fiction this season, and as flat-out unhappy....It's a fine debut."
"Review" by , "Hemmings is a determinedly unsentimental writer, and she manages her hazardous subject matter...in a dry, understated way, subverting her characters without reducing them utterly....[H]er comic sense is finely honed in this refreshingly wry debut novel."
"Synopsis" by , Narrated in a bold, fearless, unforgettable voice and set against the lush, panoramic backdrop of Hawaii, The Descendants is a stunning debut novel about an unconventional family forced to come together and re-create its own legacy.

Matthew King was once considered one of the most fortunate men in Hawaii. His missionary ancestors were financially and culturally progressive–one even married a Hawaiian princess, making Matt a royal descendant and one of the state’s largest landowners.

Now his luck has changed. His two daughters are out of control: Ten-year-old Scottie is a smart-ass with a desperate need for attention, and seventeen-year-old Alex, a former model, is a recovering drug addict. Matt’s charismatic, thrill-seeking, high-maintenance wife, Joanie, lies in a coma after a boat-racing accident and will soon be taken off life support. The Kings can hardly picture life without her, but as they come to terms with this tragedy, their sadness is mixed with a sense of freedom that shames them–and spurs them into surprising actions.

Before honoring Joanie’s living will, Matt must gather her friends and family to say their final goodbyes, a difficult situation made worse by the sudden discovery that there is one person who hasn’t been told: the man with whom Joanie had been having an affair, quite possibly the one man she ever truly loved. Forced to examine what he owes not only to the living but to the dead, Matt takes to the road with his daughters to find his wife’s lover, a memorable journey that leads to both painful revelations and unforeseen humor and growth.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.