This new Slate Ridge Press edition of the classic Hawaiian mystery concludes with “The Making of MURDER ON MOLOKA’I”—fifty-five pages of previously unpublished excerpts and explanatory notes by the author. These bonus materials give us a glimpse into the creative process behind the book and expand our conception of the Surfing Detective and his Hawai‘i. A must for fans of the wave-riding gumshoe!
When Boston heiress Adrienne Ridgely strides into his Honolulu office, Surfing Detective Kai Cooke likes what he sees, but doubts what he hears. Adrienne’s sister, environmental activist Sara Ridgely-Parke, plunged to her death from a mule on Moloka‘i – the first fatal incident on the soaring cliffs above Kalaupapa’s fabled leper colony. Murder, cries Adrienne, perpetrated by Sara’s ex-husband, developer J. Gregory Parke. Cooke flies to Moloka‘i, tracking tantalizing leads to an unlikely murder that, despite himself, he starts to believe in.
Was the mule prodded or spooked or drugged? Did Parke do it for vengeance, or Adrienne for an inheritance, as Parke alleges? Soon Kai uncovers a motive more noxious than either of these – entangling him in the shady dealings of big-time developers, corrupt politicians, and underworld thugs. As he hops from island to island seeking a pivotal clue, the clock ticks down on more than the P.I.’s case or even his own life. The future of Moloka‘i itself is at stake.
Chip Hughes earned a Ph.D. in English at Indiana University and taught American literature, film, writing, and popular fiction at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. His non-fiction publications include BEYOND THE RED PONY: A READER'S COMPANION TO STEINBECK'S SHORT STORIES—also translated into Japanese; JOHN STEINBECK: A STUDY OF THE SHORT FICTION; and numerous essays and reviews. An active member of the Private Eye Writers of America, Chip launched the Surfing Detective mystery series in 2004 with MURDER ON MOLOKA'I. The second book, WIPEOUT!, followed in 2007. The third, KULA, in 2011. Other titles, in various stages of development, include MURDER AT VOLCANO HOUSE, BARKING SANDS, and THE MAUI MASSEUSE. The series has been optioned for television. More at http://surfingdetective.com. Chip lives in Windward O‘ahu with his wife and two retrievers. He surfs when time allows.