Maui and the Big Fish

Maui and the Big Fish

by Barbara Ker Wilson

Great Britain: Frances Lincoln Ltd

ISBN: 0711220662/9780711220669

This book tells the  myth of how Maui-tikitiki (Maui topknot) came to fish up the Hawaiian islands of Maui, Molokai, Kuaii, Hawaii, Oahu and Lanai, and become known as the great Maui-tinihanga (Maui of the Thousand Tricks) throughout all of Polynesia. Presumed dead and cast into the sea as a baby, Maui is taken to the underworld by the great god Tama, who teaches him all there is to know about magic. When Maui returns to his mother, his brothers become jealous and refuse to take him out fishing with them. Maui sneaks onto the boat and uses his magic fish hook to catch six gigantic fish, which become the aforementioned islands as they are known today.

This book was nominated for the collection because it is attractive and well made in hardback, and it tells a well-known Pacific myth.

A New Zealand Curriculum-linked activity for this book can be found here.