It’s been twenty years since Hurricane Iniki visited the Island of Kauaʻi. The residents here have had time to heal their wounds, rebuild their homes, businesses and their lives. But the children of Kauai who experienced the storm will never forget. These children are now adults, many with children of their own. The hurricane taught them valuable lessons about preparing for a storm, relying on family, and coming together as a community to rebuild.
Kauai author, Mark Jeffers, believes that it is now time to release his powerful story in a new book entitled, The Eye of The Lion, The Story of My First Hurricane. The book was inspired by the children who experienced Hurricane ʻIniki twenty years ago. Jeffers believes that his book could benefit the children of Kauai as well as other children that are faced with a similar natural disaster. In his book, Master Storyteller, Mark Jeffers recounts the story of Hurricane ‘Iniki as it passes over the island of Kauai leaving a wake of destruction in its path, and shows how one Hawaiian family prepares for the hurricane and supports each other while the storm passes over their home.
The Inspiration for ‘The Eye of the Lion’ is a story itself. After Hurricane ʻIniki passed over Kauai, Jeffers wanted to know how the storm affected the children of Kauai. So, he applied for funds available from the Hawaii Hurricane Relief Fund to hold a contest that would allow the children of Kauai to share their hurricane stories. He believed that allowing the children to write their stories would be therapeutic and that their stories could potentially benefit other children that found themselves facing a hurricane or similar natural disaster. The winners also received a monetary prize, which would benefit their families at a time when most people were without work. The stories and images he received from the children of Kauai became the inspiration for The Story of my First Hurricane. Jeffers then enlisted Stacey Kaopuiki of Maui to illustrate the story based on the images sent in by the children. The Eye of the Lion has since remained in the Storybook Theatre Vault until now.
Jeffers will be signing copies of The Eye of the Lion during this anniversary week of Hurricane Iniki, at locations across the island (see schedule below).
Saturday September 8th, 12:00pm to 2:00 p.m. at Storybook Theatre of Hawaii in Hanapepe
Sunday September 9th, 12:00 to 3:00 Sweet Marie’s Restaurant & Bakery in Lihue
Tuesday September 11th, 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 pm. At Small Town Coffee in Kapa’a
Thursday September 13th, 3 – 6 p.m. at Kauai Mini Golf in Kilauea
Friday September 14th, 4 – 6 p.m. at Kukui Grove Center Stage
Saturday September 29th, 2:30 pm at the Kokee Natural History Museum Front Porch
Jeffers and the rest of the Kauai Children’s Authors Guild will also be signing books at the Princess Kaiulani Keiki Fest in Hanapepe Town on October 20th.