Calabash Stories

Calabash Stories


Author: Jeffrey Higa  |  Paperback

In the tradition of Gabriel García Márquez and Maxine Hong Kingston, and deeply rooted in the intricacies of the author's Japanese-Hawaiian heritage, Calabash Stories is a lucid, unforgettable collection. Jeffrey J. Higa's stories arise from different points in the same fertile landscape: At times, the recurrence of certain details (a beige Volkswagen bug, a famous entertainer) makes them glow with deeper meaning; at others, the reemergence of potent archetypes (a sick child, an old man living alone) invokes a dream state held between author and reader. Like the traditional Hawaiian calabash, these stories invite their reader to a family table where we are welcomed and nourished by communal traditions. Higa is a master storyteller, delighting in life's humor and strangeness while arriving at the intimacy and poignancy that come from a shared understanding of grief.


**Mariko's Staff Pick**

"This book is a treasure. If you grew up in Hawai‘i, the stories will sound like ones you could have heard from your own elders, but here they are crafted impeccably for maximum effect. They start out quietly simmering and kind of mythical, but by the end, with loads of excellent characters, heartbreak moments and slapstick humor, you might find yourself laughing and crying at the same time, and wishing so hard for the older Hawai‘i depicted in the book."