In her latest novel, The Island of Sea Women, Lisa See tackles the notion of women’s fiction head-on. She begins in a familiar way: a not-so-chance encounter on a beach on the remote Jeju Island off the tip of South Korea sets an old woman’s mind on the past; a family of Americans asks Young-sook, who lives on the island, if she recognizes a woman in a black-and-white photograph, and of course she does. See wants us to know this, though Young-sook refuses to acknowledge it. This frame sets up a mystery: Who is the woman Young-sook denied, and why did she lie? What happened between them?