written by Lee Cataluna
illustrated by Cheyne Gallarde
8" x 8", 66pp
hard cover, color
About the title:
This is a little book about a big family making the point that family is who you choose and there's always room for more at Sunday dinner, even if it's on Saturday night, or Wednesday night, or whenever. In a time when families don't fit traditional definitions, Ordinary ʻOhana assures readers that a diverse family is a normal family.
The book has a distinctive design and was packaged to imitate a family scrapbook feel. The book shares images of a contemporary Hawaiʻi family both familiar and unique. The story unfolds through the experiences collected by a young boy named Kainoa. He has a pretty ordinary family life, according to him. But when he starts to introduce the various members of his ʻohana, he reveals a complicated but very sturdy and loving family structure that has been built, rebuilt, and reinforced over time.
Kainoa describes generations-old Hawaiʻi family traditions blended with a modern, open sensibility. He talks about people he loves in a matter-of-fact voice with witty observations that every reader will enjoy. Family is who you choose?
About the Author:
Lee Cataluna is currently the Metro Columnist at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. She is a two-time recipient of the Ka Palapala Poʻokela Award of Excellence in Literature awarded by the Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association. She formerly taught Creative Writing at ʻIolani School.
About the Illustrator:
Cheyne (pronounced "shayne") Gallarde is an artist/illustrator. He was raised in the plantation village of Waipahu, but now he's a townie. Currently his art studio is located in the historic Old Blaisdell Hotel. Cheyne has been drawing ever since he could pick up a pencil.