Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

Memoirs of a Geisha

A literary sensation and runaway bestseller, this brilliant debut novel presents with seamless authenticity and exquisite lyricism the true confessions of one of Japan's most celebrated geisha.In Memoirs of a Geisha, we enter a world where appearances are paramount; where a girl's virginity is auctioned to the highest bidder; where women are trained to beguile the most powerful men; and where love is scorned as illusion. It is a unique and triump...


Details Memoirs of a Geisha

TitleMemoirs of a Geisha
ISBN9781400096893
Author
Release DateNov 22nd, 2005
PublisherVintage Books USA
LanguageEnglish
Number of pages512 pages
GenreFiction, Historical Fiction, Romance, Historical, Cultural, Japan, Classics
Rating

Reviews Memoirs of a Geisha

  • Juushika
    2008-03-26
    Memoirs of a Geisha is an American novel, and as such the attempt at West does East, especially on the complex and delicate subject of the geisha, is compelling, interesting, but also heavy-handed and ultimately ineffective (even more so in the case of the film). It is a wonderful introduction to geisha, Japanese culture, and the East for the uninitiated Western reader, and I can see why the book is popular, but I found it disappointing. For the ...
  • Liz Lynch
    2007-09-09
    Like eating fancy dessert at a gourmet restaurant, Memoirs of a Geisha is beautiful, melts lightly off the tongue and will be forgotten shortly after it's done. The language is strikingly lovely, and Golden paints a remarkable picture of a time and place. If you're looking to learn something deep about the psychology of Japanese culture, or meet nuanced characters, then I'd steer you elsewhere. The story only skims the top of the more complicated...
  • Jeffrey Keeten
    2013-11-28
    ”Whatever our struggles and triumphs, however we may suffer them, all too soon they bleed into a wash, just like watery ink on paper. “ Geisha Mineko Iwasaki basis for Chiyo/Sayori.Chiyo, with her sister Satsu, and her mother and father live in a shack by the sea on the coast of Japan. The shack leans, and has to be propped up to keep from total collapse. Her mother is sick and on the verge of death. Her father is a fisherman, uneducated, and...
  • Sophia.
    2011-11-22
    So.. Memoirs of a Geisha. I'd been wanting to read that one for a very long time. I had heard so many good things about it. It's supposed to be awesome, and deep, and beautiful, right? Wrong. It's not. The writing was what bothered me the most. It's pretentious and superficial, and sloooooww and it goes on and on and on and on and on and still, very little happens. In some sort of weird combination, the writing is both superficial and cliché. It...
  • Argona
    2013-08-16
    I became fascinated with Japanese culture when I was a teenage girl and since then I have read many Japanese-related books and articles and have watched many movies and animes that depict parts of Japanese culture but the fact remains that I am not Japanese, I have never been to Japan and I am a foreigner, captivated by this exotic and very different culture.As a foreigner, I see many beautiful and unique aspects to Japanese culture but I also kn...
  • T.J.
    2008-05-13
    Damn if you aren't one of the most problematic things I've ever read, Memoirs of a Geisha.Like much of non-Asian America, I was swept up in the delight of reading this book in 2000. I was fifteen and precocious, and the narrative was arresting. I couldn't put the book down. I wrote this in 2000:"Golden has hit pay dirt with this masterpiece. An insightful, curious, and caring look into the mysterious world of geisha, Arthur Golden peels away the ...
  • Elyse
    2012-07-20
    I read this a long time ago ---(a favorite) --- Its amazing a 'male' wrote this book. (sure 'felt' like a female speaking).
  • Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
    2013-12-09
    I read this book back when it first came out. I never wrote a review of it because when I first joined GR I didn't really know what it was all about. It took a bit before it sunk in for me.Now GR members get spammed at times. The newest form of spam is review bumping. I didn't even know that existed because..well I'm a slow learner. I kept noticing the same person's reviews on my thread. Several times a day. All day. For weeks. Someone finally po...
  • Fabian
    2014-12-02
    Well, I finally got around to this one. And I think I understand its fan base and subsequent literary worth; it was the "Gone Girl" of the 90's. This time, the fairy tale (with "Girl" it seems as if we're more comfortable with the cautionary tale in the '10s) has a Cinderella and many suitors after her. It is absolutely immersive... a page turner that has as many colors as a used-up coloring book. I see the geisha in that light: like La Marilyn, ...
  • Henry Avila
    2016-06-01
    In a small Japanese fishing village of Yoroido, on the coast of the Sea of Japan, a child Chiyo Sakamoto, 9, lives with an ancient father, dying mother, and older sister Satsu, in a dilapidated home, leaning over a cliff, the year 1929, things are tough and will get harder, as the Great Depression is about to commence...the impoverished family needs help and the two sisters are sold. Pretty Chiyo, with beautiful eyes, to become a geisha after a l...
  • Ana
    2017-02-23
    I can finally cross Memoirs of a Geisha off my list. I had my doubts about this book, but I'm happy to say I was wrong.
  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    2010-10-04
    93. Memoirs of A Geisha, Arthur Goldenخاطرات یک گیشا - آرتور گلدن (سخن) ادبیاتعنوان: خاطرات یک گیشا؛ نوشته: آرتور گلدن؛ مترجم: مریم بیات؛ تهران، سخن، 1380، در 640 ص؛ شابک: 9646961703؛ موضوع: داستان -- ژاپن -- تاریخ -- قرن 20 منمیدانم یادم نمانده کدامیک از سالهای بگذشته بود، که برای...
  • Khadidja
    2015-11-20
    Very interesting,entertaining, and quick to read! Chiyo/Sayuri and her sister Satsu were sold into slavery at the age of 9 by their father, Sayuri tells of her traumatic arrival at the Nitta okiya (a geisha house), where she endures harsh treatment from everyone, In spite of the problems she had to face, Sayuri became the beautiful geisha accomplished in the art of entertaining men.“He was like a song I'd heard once in fragments but had been si...
  • Megan B.
    2008-02-13
    The world of Geisha is a secret and forbidden world. The shell is beautiful and seems to be a life of luxury, but the core is pure suffering. Geisha do not love, they do not choose their fate, and their life is owned by the men they entertain. They are not meant to feel. The very word geisha means moving art. That’s all they’re meant to be. Not humans but paintings. Like a sculpture, beautiful but cold as the stone their made of. Memoirs of a...
  • Michi
    2007-06-11
    Very entertaining, but kind of made me gag. Everything was written in this faux-asian "My heart ached like cherry blossom petals floating on the river..." bullshit.
  • Khalid
    2007-04-15
    Memoirs of a Geisha is an amazing novel that discusses the life of a Geisha, a Japanese artist-entertainer. Both its very exotic setting, with its extremely different value system, and its fascinating plot, which grabs your interest early on and keeps you waiting for more all along, contribute to making this novel a special book worthy of reading.The best quality in this novel, in my opinion, is the way the narrator (Chiyo), tells the story. Her ...
  • Jason Koivu
    2008-11-29
    A Cinderella romance that unexpectedly swept me away! Memoirs of a Geisha is a very picturesque and dramatic tale of a young village girl taken from her family and raised in Kyoto as a geisha. Usually I don't go in for romance. Don't get me wrong, I love love. But I prefer my love stories to be true. There is something immensely powerful about real love. As far as I've been able to discover, much of this story is based on the actual events of the...
  • Katie
    2008-08-20
    I've read this book 3 times now and each time I pick it up, I forget how much I disliked reading it the last time. On the surface, the book presents an interesting subject. The life of a geisha is fascinating, especially to a westerner who has little knowledge of Japanese culture. Golden does do a fine job describing the day to day rituals, life and culture of a Kyoto geisha in the 1930's. However, once you get past the exotic subject matter, the...
  • Arah-Lynda
    2011-07-23
    A beautiful, poingnant story that is so incredibly, lyrically captivating you are seduced from the very first word. An absolute work of art, each page overflows with beautiful, sensual, evocative images. Such is the skill and authority of Golden's writing, I feel as though I have spent hours, being entertained by the most gifted of all Geisha. Utterly Satisfying. I want to read it again for the very first time!
  • Zara Aimaq
    2007-04-02
    I first read this book in high school, and although I remember liking it, I don't think I was paying very much attention because I seriously thought the book was just about a bunch of Japanese hookers. But I reread it a few weeks ago, and I loved the story. Memoirs is about the life of this peasanth girl, Sayuri, in pre and post-WW2 Japan who is sold into life as an apprentive Geisha, and then ultimately, an actual Geisha. The novel is full of th...
  • Jillian
    2008-06-19
    The book in itself presents an interesting story, and makes for an entertaining read, but what bothers me about this book is that the vast majority of Western readers interpret it as a historically accurate memoir, when in fact it was written by an American author for an American audience, and therefore has achieved its success through appealing to and reinforcing the stereotypes about Japanese culture in America. Another reviewer on this website...
  • Saffron
    2015-06-16
    Jesus! This is one long-a$$ book. It took me two weeks to finish but I did it. And in the end, it made me cry. Now I am sad that its over. I wish this book was never-ending on paper as much as this is everlasting in my mind. Perfect. Sad. Beautiful. A great love story.
  • Richard Derus
    2010-06-24
    The Book Report: The politics of the okiya, or geisha house, closely examined through the rise of Chiyo, an unpromising girl sold into slavery by her peasant family, to become Sayuri, a sought-after and renowned geisha in pre-WWII Kyoto.Chiyo's arrival in the okiya is inauspicious, and her introduction into the horrible world of all-female hatreds and politics comes at a heavy price. She attempts to run away back to the family that sold her into ...
  • Ashley
    2016-10-09
    I don't really know why I waited so long to read this book, and I most certainly never thought I would enjoy it as much as I did. Of course I realize this story is historical fiction and may not correctly depict the life of a geisha during the 1930s and 1940s in Japan in its entirety. I do feel, however, that I know quite a bit more about the geisha than I did before reading this book - both because of the book itself and of it inspiring me to re...
  • Hannah
    2016-12-15
    3.5 Stars - Great book. It took me a few chapters to get into the story and the characters – just about everything. The opening is fine but that’s it, just fine. I wasn’t pulled into the story in any way. Mediocre may be too strong of a word for the first three to four chapters but it definitely teeters on mediocre.There are many different ways to draw me into a book but mostly I have to feel some sort of connection to the characters. I did...
  • Maiquel Costa
    2016-09-21
    Incluso 4.5. Ha sido una maravilla seguir el camino de la protagonista desde niña y conocer el mundo velado de las geishas (o al menos tan tergiversado en occidente), y tantos términos, usos y palabras desconocidas para mí. Mundo todo él que me ha resultado muy interesante; libro didáctico y de lectura entretenida. Letras con vida. Para mi su protagonista es un ser que siente, padece (y mucho) y respira. Así como todos los personajes que de...
  • mai ahmd
    2011-12-21
    حين كنتُ أدرس التاريخ الجاهلي في شبة الجزيرة العربية كانت هناك فقرة تتكرر دائما عن وضع المرأة في المجتمع عبارة كنت أشعر أنهم يكررونها بشكل متعمد لإهانة جنس النساء كان المؤلف يصف معاملة الرجل المرأة على أساس إنها متاع أو ما شابه حين كنت أقرأ الجيشا ...
  • Alena
    2008-01-31
    Golden earns points for creativity, but loses them for inaccuracy.The "memoir" of the elegant Sayuri, whose life as a high-class geisha is disrupted by the outbreak of war, is written in an intriguing and alluring monologue -- purportedly narrated by Sayuri herself to the author -- that pulls the reader in from the very beginning. Unfortunately, the real narrator, Arthur Golden, took some dramatic liberties with history and cultural practices, an...
  • Loederkoningin
    2011-01-26
    I got tricked into thinking this actually was Chiyo's biography. I read the preface by the imaginary professor matter of factly, not giving much thought to it. Of course the idea of reading an autobiography sparked my excitement. I liked the prose, the part of the book in which Chiyo was not yet abducted stood out and "felt" Japanese. What quickly brought me back on the right track again, was the formulaic style. Chiyo's life consisted of a littl...
  • Beatrice Masaluñga
    2016-01-21
    I remember watching the film when I was in my 2nd or 3rd year high school for a movie review. I barely remember what happened and decided to finally pick the book as it sits on my shelf for more than 3 years. I didn't expect to like it because historical fiction isn't my usual kind of read and I find it refreshing. The premise of this book is compelling and beautiful. I was hooked from the very beginning and I can't seem to stop. The story tells ...