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The result is a novel with the broad social canvas (and love of coincidence) of Charles Dickens and Jane Austen's intense attention to the nuances of erotic maneuvering. Readers experience the entire life of a geisha, from her origins as an orphaned fishing-village girl in 1929 to her triumphant auction of her mizuage (virginity) for a record price as a teenager to her reminiscent old age as the distinguished mistress of the powerful patron of her dreams. We discover that a geisha is more analogous to a Western "trophy wife" than to a prostitute--and, as in Austen, flat-out prostitution and early death is a woman's alternative to the repressive, arcane system of courtship. In simple, elegant prose, Golden puts us right in the tearoom with the geisha; we are there as she gracefully fights for her life in a social situation where careers are made or destroyed by a witticism, a too-revealing (or not revealing enough) glimpse of flesh under the kimono, or a vicious rumor spread by a rival "as cruel as a spider."
Golden's web is finely woven, but his book has a serious flaw: the geisha's true romance rings hollow--the love of her life is a symbol, not a character. Her villainous geisha nemesis is sharply drawn, but she would be more so if we got a deeper peek into the cause of her motiveless malignity--the plight all geisha share. Still, Golden has won the triple crown of fiction: he has created a plausible female protagonist in a vivid, now-vanished world, and he gloriously captures Japanese culture by expressing his thoughts in authentic Eastern metaphors.
This novel transports you to Japan, in a time when the Geisha were equally revered and desired. It follows the journey of a little girl named Chiyo as she evolves from the little... Read morePublished 2 months ago by zakia
Phenomenal novel! A must read. the movie doesn't do the book justice.Published 4 months ago by Avid Reader
i love the book but i can only read it on my computer i attached it with my kindle but it won't appare on my kindle please solve this problem....Published 6 months ago by Shuang Ji
Young Chiyo lives in a poor fishing village. Her mother is dying, and her father unable to care for Chiyo and her sister, Satsu. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Lisa Adams
In a man's world, one with a narrow and tall ladder to the top, a young woman learns to climb to her own survival - and to for forge a place of power. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Eleanor Cowan
Beautifully written, you feel as if you may actually experience a little of what Gion was. The joy and heartbreak of a child and women, in a world that few would consider possiblePublished 14 months ago by Adele Anderson
it is an amazing book...so much thought and it allows u to go back to as if u were therePublished on Oct. 1 2011 by J & A Smith
I honestly can't count the number of times I've read this novel, and I think it's the sign of an excellent book when one can read it time and time again without once growing bored... Read morePublished on Oct. 4 2010 by Bibliotropic .net