Lehua Parker's new book "One Boy, No Water" is fully based on the islands of Hawaii.
It is entirely about finding a place in life, developing talents and conquering fears. The main character, Zader, is an artist — and he's allergic to water. His brother, Jay, is an avid surfer who has won many competitions. Zader mostly drinks pop to avoid water. He also bathes with coconut oil and raw sugar. Some people say he smells like cookies, but others just call him a freak.
Jay and Zader are very close. They both try to inspire each other to become better and further develop their talents. When they get a new teacher in school who claims many of her students get into a private school they want to go to, the brothers get very excited. They apply, and wait for the letters of acceptance to come.
Meanwhile, Zader wished he could be closer to where his brother and friends were in the ocean, but he wouldn't go near puddles or rain. One day his uncle covered him head to toe in gear — a welding mask, waders and dish-washing gloves — just so his uncle could take him to look at small pools near the ocean. Zader, being the artist he is, sketched many animals and creatures he had never seen before.
Zader's allergy is anything but normal as he discovers that in water without protection, he's a shark, and as his life takes an unexpected turn, he has to figure out to manage it and accept who he is.
"One Boy, No Water," has a good plot, but was a bit harder to read because of unfamiliarity with all the words in the story. This book would be interesting to those who want to learn parts of the Pidgin language.
The language in this book is not explicit, but it does use many Hawaiian Pidgin English phrases. Hawaiian Pidgin includes partial words from other languages such as Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Filipino, Hawaiian, Portuguese and English.
The Pidgin dialect would be more easily understood if the reader had some sort of background living in Hawaii, even if for just a short amount of time. The best thing about this book is the glossary in the back — and it would be beneficial to read the entire glossary before starting the book.
"One Boy No Water" truly shows exactly what it sounds like to live in Hawaii. This book contains no objectionable content and is appropriate for all ages. It may be better for kids with higher reading comprehension levels.
Ashlynn Green is a wife, a daughter, a sister, a pug-lover and a huge believer of the family. She also lived in a Hawaii for a year.