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Extended Audio Sample Memoirs of A Geisha Audiobook, by Arthur Golden Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.99999743341311 out of 53.99999743341311 out of 53.99999743341311 out of 53.99999743341311 out of 53.99999743341311 out of 5 4.00 (779,245 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Arthur Golden Narrator: Elaina Erika Davis Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2000 ISBN: 9780739300558
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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. Sayuri’s story begins in a poor fishing village in 1929, when, as a nine-year-old with unusual blue-gray eyes, she is taken from her home and sold into slavery to a renowned geisha house. Through her eyes, we see the decadent heart of Gion—the geisha district of Kyoto—with its marvelous teahouses and theaters, narrow back alleys, ornate temples, and artists’ streets. And we witness her transformation as she learns the rigorous arts of the geisha: dance and music; wearing kimono, elaborate makeup and hair; competing with a jealous rival for men’s solicitude and the money that goes with it.

But as World War II erupts and the geisha houses are forced to close, Sayuri, with little money and even less food, must reinvent herself all over again to find a rare kind of freedom on her own terms. Memoirs of a Geisha is a book of nuance and vivid metaphor, of memorable characters rendered with humor and pathos. And though the story is rich with detail and a vast knowledge of history, it is the transparent, seductive voice of Sayuri that the reader remembers.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Barnes & Noble Discover Award

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Foxwolf22 | 2/16/2014

    " Beautifully written. As you followed her story from girlhood to adulthood, you could connect well with her life. It teaches you much about the geisha lifestyle, and how much harder it is than what you imagine. With equal parts sadness, joy, and humor, this is a great read for anyone. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Samantha | 2/4/2014

    " Completely entertaining. Listened to it on audiobook and my house got so clean because I had to keep listening. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mariefe Flores | 2/2/2014

    " nice one.. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Windy | 1/19/2014

    " I read it when I was in Senior High School..,, and that was amusing..,, I like it...,, though, I read the translated one.. :P "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Melpomene | 1/17/2014

    " Like watching a Japanese painting dry. Really beautiful, but really boring after a while. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Desiree De wit | 1/16/2014

    " Loved this book - and understood even better once I had lived in Japan. Great insight into the Geisha world... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Magdalin | 1/12/2014

    " Thought it was a really good read. A fiction book based on facts. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laura | 1/11/2014

    " Fascinating take on Japan and the Geisha trade. Really enjoyed this book. Wonder how the movie is/was? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kerry | 1/7/2014

    " A wonderful story that gives an insight into the life of a girl in Japan whose only choice in life was to become a Geisha. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Joanne | 1/6/2014

    " An enchanting, interesting read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jade Williams | 1/4/2014

    " This book starts off slow but all in all was a really good read. If you are worried about reading it because you have seen the movie just go ahead and read it its much better than the film. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shaina A | 12/26/2013

    " Read this in college! Should go back and read t again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Softwhitelightbulbs | 12/15/2013

    " It was hard for me to keep going into this book, the first part didn't really pull me in like some books do. I continued reading, and became interested as the story unfolded. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Anna B. | 12/11/2013

    " Wonderfully written. Took my imagination to a place i've never been to in reality but was able to picture just from the words. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brittany Rea | 12/8/2013

    " kinda slow in some parts but you could see what was happening in your mind like you were there "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maureen Mclelland | 12/8/2013

    " A must read! So much better than the movie. Felt like I was there. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Carlos Sogorb | 11/10/2013

    " La historia es bastante simple y se centra demasiado en intentar detallar los decorados. Intenta que te hagas una imagen clara tanto de los personajes como de los lugares y situaciones que suceden pero todo ello sin una historia original y muy simple. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shayla Melson | 8/15/2013

    " Interesting cultural read "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jon | 6/2/2013

    " It is such an emotionally moving novel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jasmine Quash | 2/22/2013

    " I've read this at least three times and it never gets old. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sally | 2/10/2013

    " I really like this book despite the howling errors. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Heather McNabb | 12/21/2012

    " I remember reading this by my window that had a cherry tree in full blossom at the time and fell completely into this book, such good writing... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lauren Wagstaff | 9/28/2012

    " I was hooked from page one. The prose is beautiful and I could not put it down. Beautiful film as well. A story of love, growing up, struggle, choice, war at large and at home. You won't regret this "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pearly Leong | 6/14/2012

    " I watch the movie before reading the book and on the whole I felt that the book is so much better. The plot is more clearly explain plus the character development is so much more in depth. I guess there is so much a movie can do... Overall I love this book a lot and I really enjoyed it :D "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 David | 5/20/2012

    " It was ok, just ok. Overall the story line good but it was too drawn out. Seemed like so much repeat of similar scenes just to get a new development. I guess it was kind of like a soap opera type story. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christiana Guinle | 5/19/2012

    " AMAZING ! YOU CAN'T LEAVE THE BOOK ! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anne Liu | 4/26/2012

    " putting aside the fact that this is an american viewpoint of historical, fictional japan, this book has always appealed to me because of the lush storytelling and the cinderella aspect of the main character. the notion of unrequited love turns bittersweet in the ending. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Darian Dveris | 10/16/2011

    " Ghost Review "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Colette | 6/30/2011

    " This one has stuck with me. Great story with an exotic setting. I felt immersed in another culture. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hazel | 6/29/2011

    " I loved this book. The voice of Surayi is so amazing - accepting, matter-of-fact but full of poignancy. How could one girl endure so much heartache? I knew pretty much nothing about geisha so found the detail fascinating. Worthy of a blog on my website - coming soon! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hana | 6/28/2011

    " I read this book over a dozen times. I loved it so much. It took me to an exotic ride down an oriental rabbit hole where love and lust collide. This is a must read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Fatcheeks | 6/27/2011

    " I don't really remember the movie(mainly because I had the stomach flu and couldn't grasp what was going on around me) but I think the book is a lot better than the movie.
    He had waaayyy to many metaphors. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura | 6/27/2011

    " Loved the book and the images throughout the story. Great insight into the life of a geisha. Got deleted from my list and had to add back! One of my favorites! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melissa | 6/27/2011

    " This will always be one of my all-time favorite books. I have to re-read it every few years. Each time, there is a new aspect of the journey that catches hold of my heart. A brilliant book with writing that is both poignant and lyrical. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mimy | 6/27/2011

    " The whole plot of this book is pretty creepy. Geishas aren't prostitutes but they still auction off their virginities to the highest bidders? Downright disturbing... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Yulya | 6/25/2011

    " Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden is a book that full of emotions. It makes you fell excitement, grieve, sympathy, very emotional and full of ups and downs. Truly fascinating book, it makes you wondering whether true love exists or if it is just a beautiful illusion.
    -Yulya Roesdy- "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 NoLabels | 6/23/2011

    " perchè continuo ad essere così scettica verso i contemporanei? :/
    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kerry | 6/21/2011

    " A breath taking experience, into the life of Geishas "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Swaleha | 6/21/2011

    " Amazing novel amazing movie. Love it! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heather | 6/20/2011

    " This book pulled me in right away. I really enjoyed learning about the Japanese culture, but especially about the Geisha lifestyle. Even though I didn't agree with the main character's choice at the end, I still found it to be a great read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Beth | 6/19/2011

    " Probably too advanced for me - all I remember is that I had to will myself to read it. "

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About the Author
Author Arthur GoldenArthur Golden was educated at Harvard College, where he received a degree in art history, specializing in Japanese art.
About the Narrator

Elaina Erika Davis has appeared in several Off-Broadway productions, including Red, Secret History of the Lower Eastside, and Troilus & Cressida, as well as on numerous television series, including The Guiding Light, All My Children, and Law & Order. She has narrated such notable audio books as Memoirs of a Geisha and Kira-Kira