Lokahi's Triangle and Kanaloa's Betrayal, J.M. Calverley
LOKAHI'S TRIANGLE and KANALOA'S BETRAYAL are book 4 and 5 in the Detective Reef Kahili series respectively. Set in Hawaii these books are about as close to a travelogue love letter to a location, it's people and it's culture that crime fiction can get without forgetting to be crime fiction.
Littered with references to food, places, good looks and people this is most definitely not a series for fans of noir, but if you're looking for something on the lighter, airier, edging towards romance side, then Detective Reef Kahili and his sidekick Kalani Rogers could be just the thing. Especially if you're stuck in darkest winter somewhere - the location of these is sunny, bright and very very Hawaii.
There are mysteries at the heart of these two novels as well though - with LOKAHI'S TRIANGLE finding Reef and Kalani investigating the death of a young trauma doctor after a Hawaiian lomilomi (traditional massage) session. In KANALOA'S BETRAYAL a missing man might mean a love affair gone wrong, or something even more sinister.
Picking up this series at this late point did mean some concentration was required to get a handle on who was who and how everything and everybody fitted together, but it never felt like it was necessary to have read the earlier books to get the full story. The concentration is a little more on the ancillary than the mystery to this reader's eye though, so these are definitely the sort of novels that would work best for fans of that sort of balance.
You may, however, find yourself hungry. The mentions of food all the way through are hefty and it felt like Reef and Kalani devote a lot of their lives to the pursuit of food (possibly explained by the number of meals that they seem to have interrupted by urgent call outs).
A good combination of the lighter side, with some mystery thrown in, if you love travelogue's and you're craving warm, sunny and light, then the Detective Reef Kahili series is one you could take a look at. The full series is:
A trauma doctor takes her own life after having a traditional Hawaiian lomilomi session. It’s a baffling suicide murder that has Detectives Reef Kahili and Kalani Rogers running around in circles. Did Hawaiian and western medicine clash?
Or is it just another thing that's out of balance on the island? Passions are running high. Pele, the fire goddess and mother of Hawai’i is venting her rage, pouring forth rivers of molten lava and flattening everything in her fury. Everyone has their hands full.
She's not the only one arousing smoldering passions. Traditional lomi person, Liliuokalani White catches Kalani's eye. She’s about to turn him inside out and spark a series of events for him.
While Pele's making new ground, Kalani’s dealing with old ground and the ghost of his father who disappeared when he was ten. Where did he go and is Kalani ready to deal with the truth about him? Can he trust Lily with his past and what he's hiding under his easygoing nature?
Then Reef’s hanai son Akuna’s mother, Pili arrives back on-island. But what’s she up to this time and how does it involve Akuna? And Patrick Henry? She’s living up to her name—trouble…
‘Ohana, they’re all intertwined, but who’s a killer and who’s a healer? Or both?
Detectives Reef Kahili and Kalani Rogers get called out to a missing person’s case. Is this a misadventure, misper or murder inquiry?
Three friends from childhood are caught in a deadly, emotional battle. Has a love triangle gone wrong? Just how far would it take to push someone who’s been rejected by a lover? Or has Mark McGraw simply had enough and jumped ship?
Nothing seems to add up in the “he said, she said” situation. Who’s telling the truth? And what’s the real motive behind Mark’s disappearance?
Why does a man who seems to have everything going for him, a lovely girlfriend, loving family, good business, and a happy, uneventful life suddenly go missing?
While Reef’s worrying about this case, he’s also got ‘ohana things on his mind. And Kalani might just have met his match in Lily—finally. Reef’s anxious about another match with Hibby, and he’s also concerned for hanai son Akuna who’s on the Hokule’a with sea trials. The Big Island’s about to get hammered again. Hurricane Walaka’s building in the Pacific, about to cut his dangerous swathe across the Hawaiian Islands. Will Akuna come home safely, and will they find Mark dead or alive?