by Don Mitchell


by Don Mitchell


    Qualifies for Free Shipping
    Check Availability at Nearby Stores

Related collections and offers


Memoir meets true crime in Don Mitchell's exploration of a brutal 1969 murder - of which he was himself a suspect. In Hawaiian culture, shibai means "gaslighting," a concept on which Mitchell expands in this riveting first-person account of the ripples felt from the murder of Jane Britton, the Harvard graduate student who was his friend. Weaving together speculation and discoveries that excavate layers of truth and error, Mitchell moves through past and present, detailing his youth on the Big Island of Hawai'i, ultra running the high plains of the dormant Mauna Kea volcano, navigating the language and culture of the Nagovisi people in Bougainville, and meeting Becky Cooper, an investigative reporter in whose book about Jane's murder he is a continuing presence. Mitchell explores the way facts can shatter long-held perceptions, how love and connection transcend time and culture, and the way memory and meaning can shapeshift into shibai.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781732952188
Publisher: Saddle Road Press
Publication date: 11/27/2020
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.61(d)

About the Author

Don Mitchell is an ecological anthropologist, writer, book designer, and photographer. He grew up in Hilo, on the island of Hawai'i, and graduated from Hilo High School. He studied anthropology, evolutionary biology, and creative writing at Stanford and earned a PhD in anthropology from Harvard. He lived among the Nagovisi people of Bougainville for several years in the 1960s and 1970s, and returned in 2001 after Bougainville's war of secession. For many years he was a professor of anthropology at Buffalo State, a unit of the State University of New York. In his non-academic life, he was a dedicated marathon and ultra-marathon runner and a professional road race timer (operating for 25 years as Runtime Services). He continues to tackle long distances on foot, though much more slowly. He lived in Buffalo and later in Colden, New York, before moving back to his childhood home in Hilo, where he lived with the poet Ruth Thompson. In 2020 they moved to Ithaca, New York. He published an academic book and articles about Nagovisi, but in the early 1990s returned to writing fiction and poetry. His stories have won praise from many quarters, including a Pushcart nomination and awards from the Society for Humanistic Anthropology, New Millennium Writings and other journals. His photographs have won competitions and have hung in several Hawai'i galleries. He designs books for several small publishers. He has been an Artist in Residence for the City of Portales, NM, and in 2019 shared (with Ruth Thompson) the Jack Williamson Visiting Professor of English Chair at Eastern New Mexico University. In Hawai'i, he was actively involved in matters concerning Mauna Kea, Hawai'i's tallest and most contested mountain.

Table of Contents



At the Police Station


Being Sweated

You Decide to Write in Second Person


You Feel the Need of Some Danger

How Not to Save Yourself


Letting A Body Rot

Field Notes

Running or Running Away?

Out There On the Net

Becky Cooper

Positives and Negatives



What You Don't Talk About


The Young You

Drum Noise Is Just Drum Noise

Causing Pain

On the Road

Mauna Kea


The Hawai'i Police Department

The Interview Room

Tell Me Every Bad Thing

Killed by Lightning on a Mayan Pyramid

Acting Out

Falsely Accused

Almost Indicted?

After the Interview

The Murder Weapon

Knocking Around on Mauna Kea

Going Home



This Is Not A Drill

Lights Out

A Crime of Passion


He Felt Heavy So I Knew He Was Dead

This Call Never Happened

Boyd Calls

A New Novel, and Boyd Calls Again

Planting the 'Ohi'a

The 'Ohi'a Redux

The Reveal

Leaving It All Behind


Approaching the Finish Line




About the Author

From the B&N Reads Blog

Customer Reviews