Good afternoon all, as some of you may know, my book review series has been going on for some months now and I couldn't wait any longer to do this particular review. Those who know me will tell you that I love this book! I have more than one favourite, but this particular novel is well established in my favourites list. The time has come, Memoirs of a Geisha, it's your turn!
The first thing that attracted me to this book, besides the film, was the Japanese setting. I love the Japanese culture and as it's so different from my own, I find it fascinating. I had no expectations whatsoever when I started reading this book but I can honestly say I was blown away by it. Never before have I been so moved by a book.
The story follows little Chiyo, a nine year old girl who is sold to an Okiya in Gion to become a geisha. As with many young women of the time, she finds life to be cruel and this novel follows her journey to becoming, as she would later be known, Sayuri the geisha. This story has some romance, humour and even an underdog rising to the top. I resonated with Sayuri's struggle with a character called Hatsumomo, who is as beautiful as she is cruel. Her story is truly engaging and it doesn't take long for the reader to transported and immersed into her world.
I have to say, of all the books I've read, Arthur Golden has a really poetic style of writing. His comparisons are particularly beautiful in some cases. For example, he likens grief to an open window and says that you can't shut it, you can only shiver from the cold. As time goes by it closes more and more until one day you wonder what became of it. The whole story is written with clever similes and metaphors such as this one. The result makes reading a beautiful way to pass the time.
I honestly cannot rave about this book enough, I even find that I'm looking at things in real life and seeing beauty in them whereas I didn't before. Seriously, it has that much of an effect! This book wont be for everyone but if you love Japanese culture or you've previously enjoyed the film, I implore you to pick up a copy of this book! Have you read it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!