Lily Lo and The Wonton Maker by Frances Lee Hall

Around this time last year, the world lost a remarkable author, Frances Lee Hall, to a brain aneurysm. We, her writing group–Sharry Phelan Wright, Christine Dowd, Helen Pyne, Ann Jacobus, Frances, Linden McNeilly, and me–Annemarie O’Brien), were stunned and vowed that we would help Frances bring her middle grade novel, LILY LO AND THE WONTON MAKER to young readers.

(A ten-year-old) Mia Hamm meets The Joy Luck Club
Ten-year-old Lily Lo is on a quest to deal with her Gung Gung and his old-fashioned Chinese ways, all while trying to find her place alongside her soccer teammates and friends.

Frances was determined to bring diverse stories to young readers. She said she had rarely encountered a book in her childhood about a character or family like hers. She was thrilled when her agent, Marietta Zacker, sold her middle-grade novel, LILY LO AND THE WONTON MAKER, to Egmont USA in late 2013. Here is Frances post the sale of LILY LO AND THE WONTON MAKER to Egmont.

Sadly, the international publisher closed US operations a little over a year later and LILY LO, along with many other stories, never made it into print. Frances was in the process of resubmitting LILY LO when she passed away, and then her writing group took the reigns.

We found Inkshares, a hybrid publisher located in Oakland, that publishes books that attract 750 pre-orders to cover design, editing, production, and distribution costs. All proceeds from book sales beyond the initial funding amount (750 copies) will support the education fund of Frances’ and Lance’s daughter Emmie, who is now a sophomore in high school.

But we need your help to share this story and pre-order link to reach those who knew Frances. Please help us help Frances realize her dream of getting LILY LO AND THE WONTON MAKER into the hands of kids who need diverse books.


Leave a Reply

All materials © 2017 Annemarie O'Brien. Web site by Websy Daisy. Illustration © 2013 by Tim Jessell