Now A Geisha: Book Review
"You are now officially a geiko. Work even harder and be a geiko loved by everyone."
On an off chance I happened upon a book that caught my attention, 'Now A Geisha' by John Paul Foster. While the title certainly sparked my interest, I had my own reservations on the book and it's topic due to how often misinformation has been presented about the Geisha as a whole. However, the cover of the book gave me some hope that the contents within would prove to be educational and worth while. I was not disappointed. My book arrived today, and I immediately began to read it. Much to my delight, this book is bilingual in Japanese and English as well. Even if the book had only been written in Japanese, I would would have still enjoyed this book and consider it a gem among my growing library of Japanese books on the topic of Japanese kimono, geisha, oiran, and general Japanese history. This book is overwhelming a photo book, full of high quality full color photos. Most importantly the photos presented are actually of Maiko and Geisha, not people from the dress up studios in Japan being mistaken as such. The book itself follows Mameharu, Manaha, and Momifuku's transformation from a Maiko to a Geiko through a ceremony known as the erikae. Geiko is the name by which Geisha in Kyoto go by. The narrative opens on a powerful note. Not only does the book follow the journey of these new geiko, but it also touches on the people who they work alongside with such as their kimono dresser. Overall, I give this book a side 5 stars, and is a must have in your collection if you are hungry to learn more about real Geiko / Geisha.
Cost: 3400 Y