Available at many HawaiʻI retailers, online and at most hawaiʻi public libraries

Paradise to Paradise: The Rap Reiplinger Story is filled with many never-before-heard anecdotes that will make you laugh out loud while revealing the complexity of the man known as Hawaiʻi’s comic genius. More than a biography, this book traces Rap’s trajectory from his Island entertainment roots to his lasting influence as one of the dominant figures of the revolutionary cultural and artistic movement known as the Hawaiian Renaissance.    


 Rap’s Biography Also

Available on Amazon

Booga Booga reunion Skit


This rare footage is from a two-week reunion of Booga Booga original members Rap Reiplinger, James Grant Benton and Ed Kaʻahea in 1982.  To learn more about the ground-breaking comedy ensemble Booga Booga and read an excerpt from the Booga Booga chapter of “Paradise to Paradise: The Rap Reiplinger Story,” scroll down to the latest blog post below, dated July 16th. Happy Birthday Rap! (the links at the end of the video are for folks to find their way here when the video is shared other places) Mahalo to David Soon for digitizing this video from VHS!



Rap created brilliant characters and perfect lines that became part of our shared culture in Hawaiʻi.
My grandchildren use expressions that he created decades before they were born! Now Leesa’s book is available for them to learn where it all started, and for us to have a great time laughing and remembering how we were affected by that genius of a man. It’s well-written and much appreciated!
— MICHAEL W. PERRY, Perry & the Posse, KSSK Hawaii, iHeart Radio
It’s a great read! It is a compelling and funny story – a real look at the life and times of a comic genius. This book also perfectly captures the essence of that revolutionary time in our cultural history known as the Hawaiian Renaissance in a way that no book that I am aware of, has ever done before.
— ED KAʻAHEA, Founding member, comedy ensemble Booga Booga
It’s a fascinating read. Fun, many moments of keen reporting, tons of warmth,
and a tsunami of riotous memories.
— WAYNE HARADA, Honolulu Star-Advertiser
I had the honor of being on a panel reminiscing and reflecting on
an amazing person in our lives at an amazing period of time. The person?
The late Rap Reiplinger, Hawaiʻi’s numbah one comedian. The time? The Hawaiian Renaissance.
The occasion was the release of “Paradise to Paradise” the bio of Rap, lovingly and painstakingly written by his wife, Leesa Clark Stone, 35 years after his passing into paradise. Mahalo nui, Leesa for not only sharing Rap’s profound talents and gifts to make us laugh (until our sides hurt), but his off-stage human side – the struggles, the victories – his life-long friendships and his renewed faith in God, but most of all, his Aloha.
I encourage everyone to read this book,
”Paradise to Paradise: The Rap Reiplinger Story.”
— LEON SIU, Hawaiian Activist – Minister of Foreign Affairs - Hawaiian Kingdom, Entertainer
As someone who moved to Hawaiʻi in the mid 70s and soon after joined the entire state in loving Rap Reiplinger and Booga Booga, I could not put Leesa’s book down. She brilliantly captures all the details and nuances of that magical time when young, talented entertainers and future legends were rocking Honolulu. Leesa’s skills as a journalist and a former news reporter, as well as her willingness to delve deeply and write openly about her husband’s life and death, delivers a truly compelling story. She shares the man we all knew through his comedic genius, as well as the man most of us never knew with all his complexities and challenges. But, there is bigger reason why she wrote this book and it’s a stunner.
Decades in the making, this new biography of Rap Reiplinger explores what shaped the man behind the side-splitting Hawai‘i humor. Author Leesa Clark Stone manages the sometimes-difficult balancing act of veteran journalist piecing together the behind-the-scenes story alongside her more personal role of persistent widow pressing for answers.
— ROBBIE DINGEMAN, Honolulu Magazine
…what Rap is saying is: ‘If you’re dealing with Hawaiians — anything can happen! The most unexpected things can happen. We’re not here just to play your game. We have our own lives to live.’ I think that’s why we love him and that’s what makes his humor relevant today.
— DR. JONATHAN KAY KAMAKAWIWOʻOLE OSORIO Dean of Hawaiʻinuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge University of Hawai‘i
You know what they say about burning the
candle — if you burn it from 12 ends, it gives
you a big rush of light. It’s like a supernova.
That’s what Rap was in his short span of
years. He really exploded. Made a lot of
people happy.
— DUNBAR WAKAYAMA, Recording Engineer

Retailers offering

Paradise to Paradise:

The Rap Reiplinger story


BookEnds –

600 Kailua Road, Kailua

Da Shop – (closed Mondays)

3565 Harding Ave, Kaīmukī

Homegrown –

Pearlridge Center, 98-1005 Moanalua Rd, Aiea

Iolani Palace Gift Shop –

364 S King St, Honolulu

Na Mea Hawaiʻi –

Ward Village, 1200 Ala Moana Blvd.#270

Queen Emma Summer Palace Gift Shop –

2913 Pali Hwy, Honolulu

Salvage Public –

1170 Auahi St, Honolulu

Sugar Cane –

1137 11th ave #101

University of hawaiʻi at Mānoa Bookstore

2465 Campus Road


Basically Books –

1672 Kamehameha Ave, Hilo

Elements, Jewelry & Fine Crafts –

55-3413 Akoni Pule Hwy, Hāwī

Kona Stories Bookstore –

Keauhou Shopping Center, 78-6831 Alii Dr,

#142, Kailua-Kona

Lyman Museum –

276 Haili St, Hilo


Barnes & noble –

Maui marketplace, 270 dairy road, kahului


Besides Amazon, you can visit Bess Press:


classic albums

Book Photo.png

The photo on the left by photographer Jerry Chong is the basis for the portraiture on the right featured on the cover of Paradise to Paradise.

Do I Dare Disturb the Universe-cover 1.jpg

“Do I Dare Disturb the Universe”

Strange Bird - cover 2.jpg

“Strange Bird”

Towed Away - cover 3.jpg

“Towed Away”

Rap’s Albums are also on iTunes/Apple… just click on the buttons below.

Rap’s Albums are also on iTunes/Apple… just click on the buttons below.




Leesa Clark Stone is a journalist who started her broadcasting career at KKON radio in Kealakekua, Hawaiʻi. She worked at KP01/98- Rock, KMAI and KHVH Newsradio 99 in Honolulu before becoming a morning anchor and reporter at ABC affiliate KITV. Leesa anchored at CNN Headline News after leaving Hawaiʻi. She moved to Nashville to work at CBS affiliate WTVF before launching her own company with her husband, photojournalist Rich Stone. Rich and Leesa have two sons, Nick and Jake Stone. Leesa has won an Emmy Award and multiple Telly Awards for her work with Stone Productions, LLC. She has a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Missouri — Columbia. Paradise to Paradise: The Rap Reiplinger Story chronicles the life of Leesa’s late husband, James Kawika Piʻimauna "Rap" Reiplinger and is her first book.