One Man's Crusade to Crush the Hawaiian Mob


Book Description

World-class beaches, fragrant frangipani, swaying palms, and hula girls. Most folks think of Hawaii as a vacation destination. Mob-style executions, drug smuggling, and vicious gang warfare are seldom part of the postcard image. Yet, Hawaii was once home to not only Aloha spirit, but also a ruthless, homegrown mafia underworld. From 1960 to 1980, Hawaiian gangsters grew rich off a robust trade in drugs, gambling, and prostitution that followed in the wake of Hawaii’s tourist boom.
     Thus, by 1980—the year Charles Marsland was elected Honolulu's top prosecutor—the honeymoon island paradise was also plagued by violence, corruption and organized crime. The zeal that Marsland brought to his crusade against the Hawaiian underworld was relentless, self-destructive, and very personal. Five years earlier, Marsland’s son had been gunned down. His efforts to bring his son’s killers to justice—and indeed, eradicate the entire organized criminal element in Hawaii—make for an extraordinary tale that culminates with intense courtroom drama.
     Hawaii Five-O meets Wiseguy in author Jason Ryan’s vigorously reported chronicle of brazen gangsters, brutal murders, and a father’s quest for vengeance—all set against an unlikely backdrop of seductive tropical beauty.

About Ryan, Jason

Jason Ryan is a journalist living in Charleston, South Carolina, and is the author of Jackpot: High Times, High Seas, and the Sting That Launched the War on Drugs, a nonfiction account of the daring exploits of the South’s “gentlemen” smugglers and the innovative, Reagan-era federal investigation that brought them to justice. Publishers Weekly praised it as a “thoroughly researched account … Ryan recreates the era with a vivid, sun-drenched intensity.” Kirkus hailed it as a “A well-told tale of true crime,” while GQ called it  “meticulously documented and lucidly spun… part New Yorker feature-part Jimmy Buffett song… the result is adventuresome, lavish, informative fun. Try it. You’ll like it.” Ryan was previously a staff reporter for The State newspaper in South Carolina’s capital, Columbia. He lives in Charleston, South Carolina.