I've read a number of her books. The Bonesetter's Daughter was my personal favorite although The Joy Luck Club is good too. I often wonder how much of a person's life story ends up in their writings. In this case, quite a lot. Ms Tan was born in the US to immigrant parents from China. On this evening, she shared the story of growing up with a mother who suffered from severe angst and perhaps depression.
Generally, I thought the lecture was too personal, a downer but some life stories are just that. I would have liked her to link her unusual upbringing to her life as a writer. Or, the journey she traveled to becoming a published writer. That didn't happen and I missed that aspect.
She graduated from Linfield College here in Oregon. It is where she met her husband of many years. Her next novel, Valley of Amazement, will be published later this year. I look forward to reading it.
If you live in Oregon, you should consider attending the Voices lecture series. There are four a year in October, November, February and April, featuring women speakers from all walks of life.
Next years lineup features Eve Ensler of Vagina Monolog fame, speaking on "In the Body of the World";
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love, speaking on "Big Magic: Thoughts on Creative Living";
Marin Alsop, first woman to head a major American orchestra, speaks on "A Life in Music";
and Asenath Andrews, founded the Catherine Ferguson Academy for Young Women, educating teens with children and helping them break the cycle of poverty. She will speak on "Take Away Shoes and Give Girls Wings".
I hope to see you there!