Mahu---a generally negative Hawaiian term for homosexuals---introduces a unique character to detective fiction. Kimo Kanapa'aka is a handsome, mixed-race surfer living in Honolulu, a police detective confronting his homosexuality in an atmosphere of macho bravado within the police force. A man of intelligence, strength, honesty, resourcefulness, and intense dedication to the people of Hawaii, Kimo is a hard-boiled hero you will never forget. Fast-paced, intricately plotted, thoroughly enjoyable, this is a sexy, surprisingly moving mystery about discovering oneself as much as catching a killer.
About the Author
Neil Plakcy is the author of over thirty romance and mystery novels. He lives in South Florida with his partner and two rambunctious golden retrievers. His website is www.mahubooks.com.
Read an Excerpt
"I think you should give this up," my father said. "There are other
you can do where they won't care about you. Be a decorator. A hairdresser.
Something like that, that mahus do."
"I don't want to be a decorator. I want to be a cop."
"Well, you can't be," my father said, yelling. "They don't want you.
can't be any clearer than they have been."
I was expecting clouds, rain, wild thunder. Instead there were
and the clamor of news people. "Detective Kanapa'aka," a Chinese reporter
said. "Is it true you're being suspended from the police force because of
I was stunned. How could they have found out so quickly? I just stared
the guy, my mouth agape. "Detective, have you hired an attorney yet?" a
Hawai'ian guy, who I recognized from my brother's station, asked. "Will you
be suing the police force for reinstatement?"
"Do you think this is a discrimination case?" asked another.
I just stood there. They called out more questions, but I couldn't
them and I couldn't seem to move.
What People are Saying About This
"In the character of Kimo, the author has created an eminently likeable
hero-sexy and savvy yet sensitive and innocent, the kind of man's man you
just want to hug. I found myself rooting for him from the get-go, and I
finished the book hoping this to be only the first in a series of detective
novels about a character so lifelike that I could imagine calling him
Author of The Limits of Pleasure
"HAWAII HAS NEVER LOOKED BETTER OR BEEN MORE INTERESTING. Neil Plakcy's
novel combines the tension of the most adroit police procedural with the
depth of characterization, sensitivity, and careful writing that any
novelist might envy. The attempts of one Honolulu cop to untangle the
mystery surrounding the murder of a man whose body is found outside a gay
bar while at the same time struggling to understand the intricacies of his
own sexuality creates A COMPELLING AND COMPLEX STORY."
Author of Havana Run and Meet You in Hell
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Kimo Kanapa'aka is a homicide detective in Honolulu, Hawaii. Having once entertained ideas of a professional surfing career, Kimo joined the police force rather than his father's business. His growing awareness of his sexuality is pushed to the forefront when he witnesses suspicious activity outside a gay bar. Kimo's fear of being outed leads him to cover up his presence at what turns out to be a murder scene. The subsequent investigation leads Kimo to his homosexuality in the glare of the public spotlight. The interactions with his family, friends, and colleagues take center stage as Kimo moves forward with solving the murder. A well told story with interesting characters and lots of local color.
A young detective struggling with his sexual identity is forced into to the open by events surrounding a case he and his partner are involved with. How his employers, colleagues, friends and family handle the issue forms the basis of the novel. It is story told with warmth and sensitivity, and with plenty of tension and interesting twists to the plot.
A decent mystery story, and also a story about a man trying to figure himself out and to see if he can stay a cop while acknowledging that he is gay. The book shows how Kimo evolves, as he learns to be a gay man in public, and as friends and family learn the news. I liked how many around him evolved, too, as they go from being shocked, angry or dismayed to realizing that Kimo is still their son, their brother, and their friend. While this book is not a romance, I still consider it a love story. I'm looking forward to reading more in the series.