Penguin Workshop Lei and the Fire Goddess
Penguin Workshop Lei and the Fire Goddess

Lei and the Fire Goddess

By Malia Maunakea


Publication Date: June 6, 2023

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Ages 8 to 12, Grades 3 to 7

From debut author Malia Maunakea comes a sweeping fantasy about a part-Hawaiian girl who must save her best friend and her island from an angry fire goddess.

Curses aren't real.

At least, that's what twelve-year-old, part-Hawaiian Anna Leilani Kamaʻehu thinks when she listens to her grandmother's folktales about sacred flowers and family guardians. Anna's friends back home in Colorado don't believe in legends, either. They're more interested in science and sports—real, tangible things that stand in total contrast to Anna’s family’s embarrassing stories.

So when Anna goes back to Hawaiʻi to visit her Tūtū, she has no interest in becoming the heir to her family’s history; she’s set on having a touristy, fun vacation. But when Anna accidentally insults Pele the fire goddess by destroying her lehua blossom, a giant hawk swoops in and kidnaps her best friend, and she quickly learns just how real these moʻolelo are. In order to save her friends and family, Anna must now battle mythical creatures, team up with demigods and talking bats, and evade the traps Pele hurls her way.

For if Anna hopes to undo the curse, she will have to dig deep into her Hawaiian roots and learn to embrace all of who she is.

Story Locale:Oahu, Hawai'i

Series Overview: For fans of Moana and the Aru Shah series comes a rollicking fantasy duology about a part-Hawaiian girl trying to save her island.

About the Author

Malia Maunakea (she/her/hers) is a part-Hawaiian writer who grew up in the rainforest on the Big Island before moving to a valley on Oʻahu in seventh grade. She relocated to the continent for college, and when she isn’t writing can be found roaming the Colorado Rocky Mountains with her husband, their two children, and a rescue mutt named Peggy. You can find Malia online at and @MaliaMaunakea on Twitter.

Author Residence: Lafayette, Colorado

Author Hometown: The Big Island of Hawai'i; O'ahu, Hawai'i

Format: Hardcover

Length: 304 pages

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Publication Date: June 6, 2023

ISBN: 9780593522035

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