Man Shark: The Legends of Lainjin, Book One

Man Shark: The Legends of Lainjin, Book One

by Gerald R Knight


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A work of literary historical fiction, Man Shark is based on an unusual story amid the extensive oral literature of the Marshall Islanders that uncharacteristically has no ending. Tarmalu leaves her baby in the care of others while she leads her fleet of proa from the shelter of the Wotho Atoll lagoon out into the open ocean to save their craft from the certain destruction of an oncoming typhoon. Never heard from again, her son, Ḷainjin grows up to undertake an epic search for her creating a renowned navigational chant to record the seamarks along the way. Does he ever find her?

Man Shark is the first book of a multigenerational story that attempts to complete this untold tale. His unspeakable prequel search completed, Ḷainjin grasps at his last chance for the happiness of a normal life. The hardened seafarer meets Liṃanṃan at sea prior to a storm that shall forever intertwine their lives. She captivates his attention, but once ashore, can he resist the enticements of Likkōkālọk her matrilineal cousin and heir apparent to her father’s atoll?

Throughout the series, Gerald R. Knight retells many of the classic mythologies translated in his book Man This Reef, this time told from his character’s perspectives, with words woven into the cultural setting of his novel.

"Fans of prehistoric fiction will enjoy this thoroughly researched and often charming tale. An engrossing, realistic, and deeply detailed story set in Micronesia's legendary past." -- Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781771802284
Publisher: Iguana Books
Publication date: 11/15/2019
Pages: 298
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.67(d)

About the Author

Gerald was only 19 when he entered the Peace Corps after two years as a literature student at Albion College. After graduation there he returned to the Marshall Islands with a love for literature and an interest in transcribing the stories he had heard in previous years. He taught for a year and worked as a commercial fisherman for two, honing his knowledge of the language and culture. Then he went for an uninterrupted four year stay on remote Rongelap Atoll to study with the renown traditional navigators and storytellers there. In 1979 he attended a one-year apprentice program at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu to prepare as Director of the Alele Museum and National Archive of the Marshall Islands. He held that position for ten years culminating in a two-year collaboration with the Field Museum of Natural History on their permeant "Traveling the Pacific" exhibit that features a donated traditional outrigger canoe.

In 1999 Gerald graduated from the University of Illinois with master's degrees in business administration and accounting. He currently heads a thriving CPA tax practice in Palos Hill, IL. He has completed the Chicago - Mackinac Island race five times and been a member of the Columbia Yacht Club since 2005.

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