Star Advertiser Review
As a writer, Loebel-Fried tends to be overshadowed by her extraordinary
block-print illustrations. That's not really fair, as Loebel-Fried's
storytelling abilities are first rate, and she has the uncanny
ability to suggest much in just a few words. She is also helped
along by Kaliko Beamer-Trapp's Hawaiian translations. Loebel-Fried
has won the American Folklore Society's Aesop prize for Children's
Folklore and a Ka Palapala Po'okela from the Hawai'i Book Publishers
might put more trophies on her mantle. The district of Kau, on
the Big Island's Kamaoa Plain, is reputed to house the "Children
of the Gourd," so named after a legend of two lovelorn alii and
a tragedy that passes between them. The story is told through
the gourd itself, a symbol of the Hawaiian people's connection
to the land.
story has resonance in Christian mythology as well. It's gorgeously
illustrated and handsomely designed. Not just for kids.