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Book Tour Exclusive // Paperback Pub Day Debut of “Lady Tan’s Circle of Women”

June 11 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Join us to celebrate the pub date of Lady Tan’s Circle of Women in paperback, the latest historical novel from New York Times bestselling author Lisa See, inspired by the true story of a woman physician from 15th-century China—perfect for fans of See’s classic Snow Flower and the Secret Fan and The Island of Sea Women.

“See envelops her story in the accepted practices of the time: arranged marriages, the buying and selling of concubines, the pressure to provide male heirs, and the crippling and sometimes deadly practice of female foot binding. Despite the inordinate limits placed on women, See allows their strengths to dominate their stories, even though not all women were graced with lives of fulfillment.”
—The Washington Post

The Library Society and Buxton Books are honored to welcome Lisa See to dive into her newest historical novel.

Tickets*: Purchase HERE

$30 – Members or $35 – General Admission // 1 Ticket and 1 signed copy of Lady Tan’s Circle of Women

$40 – Limited Option  // 2 Tickets and 1 signed copy of Lady Tan’s Circle of Women*

*There will be a limited number of first come two-for-one tickets available to CLS Members, these tickets include two attendees and one signed copy of Lady Tan’s Circle of Women. 

NOTE: If you are unable to attend the program, and wish to secure a signed copy (or copies!), please pre-order through the following link: Lady Tan’s Circle of Women or call Buxton Books at (843) 723-1670

This is a collaborative event with Buxton Books, guest information such as email and name will be shared between both parties for promotional purposes only.


According to Confucius, “an educated woman is a worthless woman,” but Tan Yunxian—born into an elite family, yet haunted by death, separations, and loneliness—is being raised by her grandparents to be of use. Her grandmother is one of only a handful of female doctors in China, and she teaches Yunxian the pillars of Chinese medicine, the Four Examinations—looking, listening, touching, and asking—something a man can never do with a female patient.

From a young age, Yunxian learns about women’s illnesses, many of which relate to childbearing, alongside a young midwife-in-training, Meiling. The two girls find fast friendship and a mutual purpose—despite the prohibition that a doctor should never touch blood while a midwife comes in frequent contact with it—and they vow to be forever friends, sharing in each other’s joys and struggles. No mud, no lotus, they tell themselves: from adversity beauty can bloom.

But when Yunxian is sent into an arranged marriage, her mother-in-law forbids her from seeing Meiling and from helping the women and girls in the household. Yunxian is to act like a proper wife—embroider bound-foot slippers, recite poetry, give birth to sons, and stay forever within the walls of the family compound, the Garden of Fragrant Delights.

How might a woman like Yunxian break free of these traditions and lead a life of such importance that many of her remedies are still used five centuries later? How might the power of friendship support or complicate these efforts? A captivating story of women helping each other, Lady Tan’s Circle of Women is a triumphant reimagining of the life of one person who was remarkable in the Ming dynasty and would be considered remarkable today.


Lisa See is the New York Times bestselling author of The Island of Sea WomenThe Tea Girl of Hummingbird LaneSnow Flower and the Secret FanPeony in LoveShanghai GirlsChina Dolls, and Dreams of Joy, which debuted at #1. She is also the author of On Gold Mountain, which tells the story of her Chinese American family’s settlement in Los Angeles. See was the recipient of the Golden Spike Award from the Chinese Historical Association of Southern California and the Historymaker’s Award from the Chinese American Museum. She was also named National Woman of the Year by the Organization of Chinese American Women.