Edgar Award winner Naomi Hirahara has released her second Leilani Santiago mystery, “An Eternal Lei” (Prospect Park Books), a follow-up to “Iced in Paradise” (2019).
It’s the middle of the pandemic and Hawaii has been virtually closed to tourists.
So when Leilani Santiago and her young sisters save a mysterious woman wearing an unusual lei from drowning in Waimea Bay in Kaua‘i, questions abound. Who is she and where did she come from?
Leilani suddenly finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation when the lei is traced back to her best friend, the very pregnant Courtney Kahuakai, and her family’s flower business.
While the woman is in a medically induced coma at a local hospital, Leilani sets out to discover her identity and her connections to the island. She is drawn deeper into the mystery, only to stumble into secrets that prove deadly.
When Leilani’s investigation puts her family in danger, her survival and the safety of those dearest to her will depend on her sense of ingenuity and the strength of her island community.
Hirahara is the author of the Mas Arai mystery series: “Summer of the Big Bachi” (2004), “Gasa-Gasa Girl” (2005), “Snakeskin Shamisen” (2006), “Blood Hina” (2010), “Strawberry Yellow” (2013), “Sayonara Slam” (2016) and “Hiroshima Boy” (2018). She also wrote two mysteries featuring Officer Ellie Rush, “Murder on Bamboo Lane” (2014) and “Grave on Grand Avenue” (2015).
She has written a young adult novel, “1001 Cranes” (2008), and several nonfiction books about Japanese American history.
“Clark and Division” (2021), a historical fiction novel by Hirahara, is set in Chicago when Japanese Americans were resettling there after being released from the wartime internment camps.
Hirahara’s upcoming appearances include the following:
• Thursday, March 24, at 7 p.m. at Vroman’s Bookstore, 695 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. At this “An Eternal Lei” launch, Hirahara will be joined by Gigi Pandian, author of “Under Lock and Skeleton Key.” Ticketed event. For more information, call (626) 449-5320 or visit www.vromansbookstore.com
• Saturday, March 26, at 2 p.m. at Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave., Little Tokyo. At this “An Eternal Lei” launch, Hirahara will be joined by Sarah Kuhn, author of “Hollywood Heroine,” “From Little Tokyo with Love” and “I Love You So Mochi.” A hybrid in-person/virtual event with RSVP required. Info: (213) 625-0414, www.janm.org
For the author’s full schedule of events, visit www.naomihirahara.com.