Hawaii by James Michener
"Hawaii" is about Hawaii. From the volcanic birth through the mid 1950's. It's written in sections with each section covering a different period in history.
The first is the story of the Bora Borans and the forces that drove then to leave their homes and take off across the ocean not knowing where they were going. The next section covers the missionaries arrival. While some try to convert the primitive people, others decide to begin buisinesses. As time passess and success reigns, more workers are needed. So other sections tell of the arrival of the Chinese and the Japanese.
Hawaii is an ambitious book. It covers an entire history in just 900+ pages. But it's a fascination history. I have to admit the names got confusing after awhile. For generations the names of the original missionary famillies were wsed over and over. You've got Bromley Hale, Hoxworth Hale, Bromley Hoxworth, Whipple Hoxworth, Whipple Janders, Janders Hoxworth, etc. Thank goodness there's a geneology chart in the back of the book. It's invaluable in keeping all the characters straight over the generations.