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Memoirs of a Geisha | [Arthur Golden]

Memoirs of a Geisha

In a voice both haunting and startlingly immediate, Nitta Sayuri describes her life as a geisha. Taken from her home at the age of nine, she is sold into slavery to a renowned geisha house. Witness her transformation as you enter a world where appearances are paramount, virginity is auctioned to the highest bidder, women beguile powerful men, and love is scorned as illusion.
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Audible Editor Reviews

After the death of her mother, a young girl from a rural fishing village is sold to a Geisha House in the Gion District of Kyoto. Her fate continually twists, along with Japan's, before, during and after World War II.

This listen captures with great detail the lush glamour of a geisha's world, as well as the brutal realities of indentured servitude. The experience is superior to that of the movie, because each moment is mined for maximum insight. Protocols and relationships, even food and finances, are also meticulously described. The result is total immersion in this fascinating culture.

The narration may seem reserved, but that is appropriate given the book's setting. The sexual content is also very discreet and appropriate. Watching the movie is only getting your feet wet; get the full experience through this listen, a bewitching strong step into not just another time, but another world.

Publisher's Summary

Nitta Sayuri tells us in a voice at once haunting and startlingly immediate of her life as a geisha. Her story begins in a poor fishing village in 1929, when, as a nine-year-old girl with unusual blue-gray eyes, she is taken from her home and sold into slavery to a renowned geisha house. We witness her transformation as 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 triumphant work of fiction - at once romantic, erotic, suspenseful - and completely unforgettable.

©1997 Arthur Golden; Copyright ©1998 by Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Astonishing...Breathtaking...You are seduced completely." (Washington Post Book World)
"...a bravura performance, a first novel that provides a vivid view into a largely lost and secret world." (The Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Theodore Decastri Jr. Nashville, TN 11-14-05
    Theodore Decastri Jr. Nashville, TN 11-14-05 Member Since 2011

    Ted

    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    333
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
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    Overall
    "Great Story, Vivid Detail"

    Did not think I would love this book, but indeed I did. It will make you want to visit Kyoto...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheldon Woodbridge , VA, USA 11-08-05
    Sheldon Woodbridge , VA, USA 11-08-05 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    207
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Moving, touching, lasting memories"

    The poetically written memoirs provided almost 18 hours of sheer listening enjoyment. I am looking forward to listening to it again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrea Cambridge, MA, USA 11-07-05
    Andrea Cambridge, MA, USA 11-07-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    72
    3
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    Overall
    "The unabridged version is fabulous"

    This was a wonderful "read"! It is a telling statement that is relevant for today regarding the effect of poverty on women's lives. It is a fascinating story of the times which echoes into this day of children being sold into sexual slavery. The geisha of this story lived as a geisha in pre and post World War II Japan. In some way she seems to romanticize her life; however, this is understandable given that she was sold to be a geisha at an early age due to the imminent death of her mother and stepfather. I was drawn along into the story and recommend it highly. I learned a lot about the Japanese culture of the past and as mentioned above, it?s lessons are valuable today.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah Parker, CO USA 09-22-05
    Deborah Parker, CO USA 09-22-05 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    101
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    83
    28
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    FOLLOWING
    2
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    Overall
    "Absolutely Fascinating!"

    I EXPECTED this book to be good but I was blown away by its beauty and scope. I love reading, love books, but this was way over the top in the enjoyment department!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terry Charlottetown, PE, Canada 07-28-05
    Terry Charlottetown, PE, Canada 07-28-05
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    1
    Overall
    "Memoirs of a Geisha (Unabridged"

    Fantastic Listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard SPRING HILL, FLORIDA, United States 07-22-05
    Richard SPRING HILL, FLORIDA, United States 07-22-05 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    52
    10
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Memoirs of a Geisha"

    I see everone That has downloaded this book gave it a 5 STAR review. I wish I could give it a 10 STAR WOW! it is one of the best I have ever heard. I wish she got to see her sister. A must to read.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessica Peapack, NJ, USA 07-17-05
    Jessica Peapack, NJ, USA 07-17-05
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "Very Gripping"

    I couldn't turn this one off...I was walking around the house with my headphones on!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. SylverFoust 07-16-05 Listener Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    41
    7
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "One of the Best"

    This book captured my attention from the onset and I could not stop until the book was completed. LOVED IT!!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    konnichwakid Lehi, Utah 07-12-05
    konnichwakid Lehi, Utah 07-12-05 Listener Since 2005

    Lowerbackblog

    HELPFUL VOTES
    36
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    54
    19
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    "Who else would teach you what mizuage means"

    This book gets a head of steam and seems like it will lose it's pace, but it just keeps going stronger and stronger. Better than the DaVinci Code when it comes to cultural back ground. Even somewhat suspenseful for a simple memoir. My only issue, and this actually really bugs, is that the reader can not pronounce Japanese words that good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura Bothell, WA, USA 07-02-05
    Laura Bothell, WA, USA 07-02-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
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    84
    12
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    0
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    Overall
    "A little slow going at first..."

    I have to admit I got rather tired of the first third of this book. I wanted to get this part over with and start delving into the "secret world of the geisha". There's really not too much of that in this book. But it does get more interesting once the heroine begins her geisha studies, and it does have a satisfactory ending, in my opinion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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