Arthur Golden biography, plus links to book reviews and book excerpts from books by Arthur Golden.

Author Biography  |  Interview  |  Books by this Author  |  Readalikes

Arthur Golden

Arthur Golden

Arthur Golden Biography

Arthur Golden was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and was educated at Harvard College, where he received a degree in art history, specializing in Japanese art. In 1980 he earned an M.A. in Japanese history from Columbia University, where he also learned Mandarin Chinese. Following a summer at Beijing University, he worked in Tokyo, and, after returning to the United States, earned an M.A. in English from Boston University. He is the author of Memoirs of a Geisha, which was adapted into a film in 2005. He resides in Brookline, Massachusetts, with his wife and two children.

This biography was last updated on 07/21/2011.

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Interview

A Conversation with Arthur Golden, about Memoirs of A Geisha

Q: What sparked your interest in the subject of geisha?

A: I studied Japanese language and culture in college and graduate school, and afterward went to work in Tokyo, where I met a young man whose father was a famous businessman and whose mother was a geisha. He and I never discussed his parentage, which was an open secret, but it fascinated me. After returning to the U.S., I began work on a novel in which I tried to imagine this young man's childhood. Gradually I found myself more interested in the life of the mother than the son and made up my mind to write a novel about a geisha.

I read everything I could find on the subject, in English and in Japanese, and ended up writing an 800 page first draft focusing on five years in the life of a Kyoto geisha shortly after World War II. Then as I prepared to revise the manuscript, a longtime Japanese friend of my grandmother's offered to introduce me to a Kyoto geisha named Mineko--retired already at the age of 42 and evidently willing to talk to me. I flew to Japan to meet with her, not at all certain what to expect. I worried she might spend an afternoon chatting with me about the sights and then ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Arthur Golden at BookBrowse

Recommended in Detail at BookBrowse

Memoirs of a Geisha
Memoirs of a Geisha

by Arthur Golden

An alluring tour de force: a brilliant debut novel told with seamless authenticity and exquisite lyricism as the true confessions of one of Japan's most celebrated geisha.
Read More

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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Arthur Golden but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Katherine Govier

    Katherine Govier

    Katherine Govier is the author of nine novels and three short story collections. Her most recent novel The Printmaker's Daughter (originally published as The Ghost Brush in Canada) is about the daughter of the famous ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Memoirs of a Geisha

    Try:
    The Printmaker's Daughter
    by Katherine Govier

  • Kathryn Harrison

    Kathryn Harrison

    Kathryn Harrison is the author of the novels The Seal Wife, The Binding Chair, Poison, Exposure, and Thicker Than Water. She has also written the memoirs The Kiss and The Mother Knot; a travel memoir, The Road to ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Memoirs of a Geisha

    Try:
    The Binding Chair
    by Kathryn Harrison

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