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Release: Feb. 23, 2001

Best-selling author Amy Tan will read at the UI March 9

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Amy Tan, author of "The Joy Luck Club" and other best-selling books, will read from her new novel, "The Bonesetter’s Daughter," at 8 p.m. Friday, March 9 in Buchanan Auditorium of the University of Iowa Pappajohn Business Administration Building. The reading -- part of the "Live from Prairie Lights" series originating on the UI radio station WSUI, 910 AM -- will be free and open to the public.

Tan wrote the novels "The Kitchen God’s Wife" and "The Hundred Secret Senses," and two children’s books, "The Moon Lady" and "The Chinese Siamese Cat." "The Joy Luck Club" was nominated for the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Award, and was adapted for the screen. It won the Commonwealth Gold Award and the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award.

In "The Bonesetter’s Daughter" Tan tells the story of a Chinese-American writer from San Francisco whose mother is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. The novel, which is set in contemporary San Francisco and a Chinese village before World War II, chronicles the writer’s attempts to learn about her mother’s past before the disease erases her memories.

Tan’s own mother, Daisy, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s just before Tan began writing the novel. At the same time her longtime editor, Faith Sale, was in the midst of a fatal bout with cancer.

"I was going back and forth, taking care of and being with my editor and with my mother, and thinking a lot about what endures and how you find people and lose them at the same time," Tan told the Philadelphia Inquirer in a recent interview.

Poet Nancy Willard, who reviewed "The Bonesetter’s Daughter" for the New York Times, says the "splendid new novel abounds not only with tellers and listeners but with people who truly understand stories and people who preserve them."

Tan’s short stories and essays have appeared in the Atlantic, Grand Street, Harper’s, The New Yorker and the Threepenny Review. She co-wrote the screenplay for the film version of "The Joy Luck Club," which was released in 1994.

For more information about this event, call Prairie Lights at 319-337-2681. For UI arts information, visit this new address -- -- on the World Wide Web. To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <>.