Local: A Memoir

Brilliance Audio. Jan. 2023. 6:54 hrs. ISBN 9781978694644. $35.99. MEMOIR
Machado’s debut memoir begins as a coming-of-age story that focuses on her sexual awakening and feeling “other” during her childhood in Hawai‘i. Her cultural identity crisis comes from being the daughter of a father with Indigenous heritage and a white mother from Louisiana. Her parents eventually split; the fallout fueled her angst and later alcohol-use disorder. Machado’s journey to the mainland and the death of her mother at an early age move the story into her adult life where she yearns for her homeland and the unsettling life she left behind. Interspersed with her personal story are a history of the Hawaiian islands and the influences of colonial forces and an examination of the ways in which culture is shaped. Narrator Mapuana Makia skillfully reads the historical sections of this memoir, enlivening them with her lyrical pronunciation of Hawaiian words. She brings out the passion in Machado’s telling of myth and legend and conveys Machado’s forthright approach as she shares her personal stories and history.
VERDICT A moving portrait of a woman navigating culture and identity, elevated by the use of beautiful Hawaiian language. A good addition to round out any audio memoir collection.
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