Danny is the son of missionary parents living on a Hawaiian island. Poi is a native food and a small black dog (Blackie) is being fattened on a diet of poi. Once he is large enough, Blackie will then be eaten. To prevent this, Danny steals and eats Blackie's food so that he will remain thin and not be made into a meal. Danny is also given the task of tutoring the son of the king, a job that turns out to be a great deal of fun. After a short lesson in the alphabet, the student takes Danny out on canoe rides, swimming, surfing and other exciting activities. Danny is concerned that his student is not learning the alphabet, but all his fears are unwarranted. At a great party, the king makes eating dogs taboo and the student uses his body to make all the letters of the alphabet. This is an excellent multicultural story for young children. They would have great fun trying to make the letters, although some of them may require significant contortionist skill.