Join BookBrowse today and get access to free books, our twice monthly digital magazine, and more.

Alan Brennert biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Read-Alikes

Alan Brennert

Alan Brennert

Alan Brennert Biography

Alan Brennert is a novelist, screenwriter, and playwright. He was born in 1954 in Englewood, New Jersey, to Herbert E. Brennert, an aviation writer, and Almyra E. Brennert, an apartment rentals manager. He has lived since 1973 in Southern California, where he received a B.A. in English from California State University at Long Beach and did graduate work at the UCLA film school.

His novel Moloka'i was a national bestseller and a One Book, One San Diego selection for 2012. It also received the Bookies Award, sponsored by the Contra Costa Library, for the 2006 Book Club Book of the Year. His next novel, Honolulu, won first prize in Elle magazine's Literary Grand Prix for Fiction and was named one of the best books of 2009 by The Washington Post. Of his novel Palisades Park, People magazine said, "Brennert writes his valentine to the New Jersey playground of his youth in Ragtime style, mixing fact and fiction. It's a memorable ride."

His work as a writer-producer for the television series L.A. Law earned him an Emmy Award and a People's Choice Award in 1991. He has been nominated for an Emmy on two other occasions, once for a Golden Globe Award, and three times for the Writers Guild Award for Outstanding Teleplay of the Year. His short story "Ma Qui" was honored with a Nebula Award in 1992, and that same year he co-wrote the libretto for the Alan Menken/David Spencer musical Weird Romance, produced by the WPA Theatre in New York and since performed in dozens of regional, high school, and college productions throughout the country. Columbia Records released a soundtrack album in 1993, which is currently available on iTunes.

In February 2019, he published Daughter of Moloka'i, a long-awaited follow-up to Moloka'i.

Alan Brennert's website

This bio was last updated on 10/09/2019. In a perfect world, we would like to keep all of BookBrowse's biographies up to date, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's simply impossible to do. So, if the date of this bio is not recent, you may wish to do an internet search for a more current source, such as the author's website or social media presence. If you are the author or publisher and would like us to update this biography, send the complete text and we will replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Interview

In three separate interviews Alan Brennert talks about Moloka'i, set in a leper colony in early 20th century Hawai'i; Honolulu, which follows the life of a young "picture bride" who arrives in Hawai'i in 1914; and Daughter of Moloka'i, the 2019 sequel to his debut.



A Conversation with Alan Brennert about Daughter of Moloka'i

What inspired you to write a sequel to Moloka'i?

Not long after Moloka'i was published, I was speaking to a book club when one of its members asked me, "Have you ever considered telling Ruth's story?" I had not, and though I found the idea intriguing, so soon after Moloka'i I was ready to move on to other subjects. Two books and a decade later, I was talking to my brilliant agent, Molly Friedrich, about an idea I had for another novel when she said, "You know what you should write? You should tell Ruth's story," and argued that there was potentially a powerful story there to be told. Well, I don't need to be hit on the head with an idea a third time! After some initial thought I began to see a perfect three-act structure to Ruth's life: her childhood in Honolulu and California; her internment during World War II; and the final third of the novel, Ruth's meeting with Rachel and her 22-year relationship with her birth mother, which had only been alluded to in Moloka'i. Two and a half years later, with substantial help in shaping the story from Molly and my editors, Hope Dellon and Elisabeth Dyssegaard, the structure I first envisioned remains.

Was it difficult ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by Alan Brennert at BookBrowse
Daughter of Moloka'i jacket Palisades Park jacket Honolulu jacket Moloka'i jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Read-Alikes

All the books below are recommended as read-alikes for Alan Brennert but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose read-alikes

We recommend 22 similar authors


Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Join our inner reading circle, go ad-free and get way more!

Find out more


Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: Long After We Are Gone
    Long After We Are Gone
    by Terah Shelton Harris
    Terah Shelton Harris's marvelous family drama Long After We Are Gone begins with the death of the ...
  • Book Jacket: Exhibit
    Exhibit
    by R O. Kwon
    Exhibit, R.O. Kwon's sophomore novel (after The Incendiaries, 2018), introduces readers to Jin Han, ...
  • Book Jacket: Somehow
    Somehow
    by Anne Lamott
    Anne Lamott knows a thing or two about love. In fact, there is so much of it exuding from her essay ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Wings Upon Her Back
    by Samantha Mills
    Faith is a delicate thing. At its best, it can offer peace in times of crisis. At its worst, it can ...

BookBrowse Book Club

Book Jacket
Long After We Are Gone
by Terah Shelton Harris
After their father's death, four siblings rally to save their family home in this gripping and hopeful tale.
Book Jacket
The Pecan Children
by Quinn Connor
Two sisters deeply tied to their small Southern town fight to break free of the darkness swallowing the land whole.
Win This Book
Win Bright and Tender Dark

Bright and Tender Dark by Joanna Pearson

A beautifully written, wire-taut debut novel about a murder on a college campus and its aftermath twenty years later.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

A W in S C

and be entered to win..

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.