This book was on my list ever since Oprah gave it her stamp a few years ago. When I began to see the trailers and posters for the movie, I decided to finally read it. The books I read are usually written by Black female authors. I've wanted to diversify my reading for a while and after reading The Secret Life of Bees and now Memoirs of a Geisha, I'm more convinced I'd like to branch out. Both books are narrated by young girls, white and Japanese respectively. A number of the thoughts and feelings expressed by both girls, I recalled thinking and feeling as a young girl myself. Both authors did an amazing job giving a voice to the universal young girl, no matter what race. I was most impressed with Author Golden's work because he's male, white, and American, yet the way he treated the voice of this Japanese peasant girl-turned geisha is so...authentic.
Confession: I usually skip the foreword and acknowledgments in novels I read, but I'm SO glad I read them in this one. They're very necessary and make reading the book such a complete delight. I actually exhaled when it was done.
Every moment I was reading this book, I was drawn into the world of this blue-grey eyed Japanese girl. I remember trying to explain to a friend how this book drew me in: When I was reading the book, I was IN it. When I wasn't reading the book, I was thinking about it. The imagery is SO vivid. The scenery and objects and people are described so well that I almost feel like I've been to Yoroido and Kyoto, Japan, and have smelled the smells and seen everything Sayuri, the geisha, has seen, and like I know so much about the training and work of geisha...is that weird? I guess not. That's the whole point of fiction right? To give you an "elsewhere" experience?
The storytelling is poetic. It was a wonderful reading experience. It was beautiful. I can only imagine what the movie experience will be like. I can't wait to see what they've done with this novel. As beautifully as the pictures were painted in the pages of the novel, they definitely had a challenge before them. I'm looking forward to seeing this story in motion.
I'm having my stitches removed on opening day, so I hope I'm in good enough shape to see the movie at some point during opening weekend.