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Publisher's Summary

In Arthur Golden's poised and beautifully written debut novel, Sayuri tells the extraordinary tale of her life, evoking a quarter of a century of Japan's dramatic history, 1929 through to the post-war years.

Her story encompasses her childhood in a poor fishing village, before taking us, as she was taken at the tender age of nine, into the formal but intimate world of the geisha, a world supposedly of eroticism and enchantment, but also one of exploitation and degradation. Later, when the war has forced the closure of the geisha houses, Sayuri tells of her redemptive struggle, penniless and hungry, finally to forge her own freedom, on her own terms.

©1997 Arthur Golden; (P)1998 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.

Critic Reviews

"Golden tells a mesmerizing story." (The Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review)
"Astonishing...breathtaking....You are seduced completely." (Washington Post Book World)
"Many...details serve to enrich Memoirs of a Geisha, giving Sayuri's story a sharper focus and providing the distinctive qualities the heroine herself lacks." (The New York Times Book Review)

What members say

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  • Overall
  • Claire Bower
  • 02-26-06

Memoirs of a Geisha

A tear-jerking, funny account of an innocent young girl whose life is turned upside-down when her poor fisherman father is unable to cope with having two young girls and a dying wife and sells her to be a Geisha Girl. This story is fascinating and shows what a hard life these poor girls had after the betrayal of their father. One sold as a prostitute and the other a Geisha. Well worth the read/listen. I have now also bought the book to read!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Cathy
  • 04-06-06

Brilliant

This was my first audio book so I have little to compare it to however I enjoyed it so much that I have upgraded my shuffle to a Nano so that I can listen to lots more!

The narrator's accent added to the realism of the story that moved along at a slow pace, allowing you to take in each stage of the main characters life. The attention to detail transports you into another world from which you view the life of a little girl as she is torn away from her family and taken to a city far from home. Here she slowly developes into one of the most important Geisha of her time. You are given an insight into her sense of duty, her hardship, her anguish, her survival and ultimately her feeling of self-worth that finally leads her to love and happiness.

This is far from a love story but is a factual dialogue about Japanese life in former times.

Try it - you won't be disappointed.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Anne
  • 10-11-17

Disappointed with cuts!

This story is a favourite of mine so I decided to have it as an audio book. It has been spoiled by being abridged losing many key points in the story. I enjoyed the performance though. I guess I will have to check more carefully to avoid abridged books in the future!

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  • Evey
  • 05-23-15

Love Love Love

I can't get enough of this book. So gripping and heartbreaking and at the same time lovely story. I love the narrators voice her calm and gentle voice makes the book even better.

  • Overall
  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-08-13

Memoirs of a Geisha

Honestly speaking I am very critical when it gets to audio books as the narration isn't appropriate most of the times.

This is not the case for this book thou. The Narrator they have chosen and her accent matches perfectly the main character "Sayuri". Its a breath taking story of a young girl and her trials. I would highly recommend the book/audio book to anyone. From a personal stand point the book/audio book is definitely worth the readers/listeners time.

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  • Sian
  • 01-29-17

SCAM THE AUDIO DOES NOT REFLECT WHAT THE BOOK SAY

What would have made Memoirs of a Geisha better?

I was really looking forward to hearing the audio version of the book so I bought the audio on this page and there are only 3 chapters between cuts that do not allow to follow the reading of the book with the audio is to skip the lines and one is lost Every certain paragraph, it is a misfortune to remove this audio, it is a waste of money

What could Arthur Golden have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

I was really looking forward to hearing the audio version of the book so I bought the audio on this page and there are only 3 chapters between cuts that do not allow to follow the reading of the book with the audio is to skip the lines and one is lost Every certain paragraph, it is a misfortune to remove this audio, it is a waste of money

How did the narrator detract from the book?

I was really looking forward to hearing the audio version of the book so I bought the audio on this page and there are only 3 chapters between cuts that do not allow to follow the reading of the book with the audio is to skip the lines and one is lost Every certain paragraph, it is a misfortune to remove this audio, it is a waste of money

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM

Any additional comments?

SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM

0 of 1 people found this review helpful