12:30 PM to 1:20 PM
The Inspiration of Ancestors
Lisa See will speak about how her family history has shaped her writing career. She was inspired by early research into her grandfather’s history and compelled to use that history to create very human stories of love, loyalty and family connections that resonate with readers, no matter what their personal heritage may be. With her newest book, she also explores the topic of Chinese-American adoption, the connection between mothers and daughters, and how we are all shaped both by family and by the country where we make our home.
About Lisa See
Lisa See grew up in Los Angeles, where she spent time with her father’s family in Chinatown. Her first book, the national bestseller and New York Times Notable Book, On Gold Mountain: The One Hundred Year Odyssey of My Chinese-American Family, traces the journey of her great-grandfather, Fong See, who overcame endless obstacles to become the 100-year-old godfather of Los Angeles’s Chinatown and the patriarch of a sprawling family. That project inspired her to write her first novel, Flower Net, which became her first national bestseller. Flower Net was nominated for an Edgar Award for best first novel.
In her beloved New York Times bestsellers, including Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Peony in Love, and China Dolls, Lisa See brilliantly illuminates the strong bonds between women, romantic love, and love of country.
With her newest novel, The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane, See returns us to those timeless themes. A powerful story about a family separated by circumstances, culture, and distance, The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane paints an unforgettable portrait of a little-known region and its people. See has always been intrigued by stories that have been lost, forgotten, or deliberately covered up. For Snow Flower, she traveled to a remote area of China—where she was told she was only the second foreigner ever to visit—to research the secret writing invented and used privately by women for over a thousand years.
See was the Publishers Weekly West Coast Correspondent for thirteen years, and her writing has appeared in Vogue, Self, and More, among other national publications. She was named the National Woman of the Year by the Organization of Chinese American Women in 2001 She is also the recipient of the Chinese American Museum’s History Makers Award and the Golden Spike Award from the Chinese Historical Society of Southern California.