Taking Hawaii

  • by Stephen Dando-Collins
  • Narrated by David Franklin
  • 14 hrs and 1 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

On a January afternoon in 1893, men hunkered down behind sandbagged emplacements in the streets of Honolulu, with rifles, machine guns, and cannon ready to open fire. Troops and police loyal to the queen of the sovereign nation of Hawaii faced off against a small number of rebel Honolulu businessmen - American, British, German, and Australian. In between them stood hundreds of heavily armed United States sailors and marines. Just after 2:00 p.m., the first shot was fired, and a military coup began. This is the true, tragic, and at times amazing story of the 1893 overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani of Hawaii and her government. It's also the story of a five-year police state regime in Hawaii following the overthrow, an attempted counter-coup by Hawaiians in 1895, and of how Hawaii became a United States possession.
In Taking Hawaii, award-winning author Stephen Dando-Collins (Standing Bear Is a Person, Legions of Rome, Tycoon's War) reveals previously little-known facts uncovered during years of research on several continents, in the most dramatic and comprehensive chronicle of the end of Hawaii's monarchy ever published. Using scores of firsthand accounts, this often minute-by-minute narrative also shows for the first time how the queen's overthrow teetered on a knife's edge, only to come about purely through bluff.
Taking Hawaii plays out like an exciting novel, yet this tale of a grab for power, of misjudgment and injustice, truly took place. Judge for yourself whether you think the queen of Hawaii was wronged, or was wrong.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

An Excellent Piece of Writing Ruined by Narration

This exhaustively researched history should be mandatory reading for all Americans, especially those who travel to or live temporarily in Hawaii.

Whomever is responsible for the selection of the narrator should be fired. Apparently the only requirement for the job was to be an Australian, presumably to make the narration more "authentic" since the author is an Aussie. I would have added other qualifications, such as a demonstrated familiarity with the English language, a work ethic that included rehearsals, and the lack of a speech impediment. Audible owes anyone who purchased this version an apology and a free replacement.
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- Karen Hubbard

Great information but terrible narrator

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I just moved to Hawaii and noticed the museums have a very biased view of the taking of Hawaii. I bought this book to hear the Hawaiian side of the story. It's a well written and engaging book full of well-researched facts. I highly recommend except for the narrator. Not only does he mispronounce common Hawaiian names and words, like Kamehameha and haole but he mispronounces them differently and inconsistently. He's really awful and it takes away from the story. He's so poor I would recommend reading this book rather than listening to it. It's sad this wasn't caught.


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- Amazon Customer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-07-2015
  • Publisher: Audible Studios