Monday, 19 July 2010

MEMOIR REVIEW: 90 Day Geisha - Chelsea Haywood


Step into the surreal world of a Tokyo hostess club and gain an exclusive underground pass courtesy of Chelsea Haywood as she sets out to explore a vocation where GBP400 dinners, Harajuku shopping sprees and first-class trips to Kyoto are just part of the job. This is the true story of one girl's immersion in the world of hostessing, a late-night entertainment for wealthy Japanese men drawn from the traditional institution of the geisha. In an attempt to make the foreign familiar, Chelsea's initial fascination takes an unexpected turn as she struggles to maintain sanity in an illusory world full of empty flattery, unrelenting temptation and material excess.


Coming across a new publisher is always something special, as you get to find a whole host of new talent that you didn’t know about before. For our first offering from Mainstream Publishing we selected 90 Day Geisha which from the blurb looked like it was going to be something special.

However what we discovered was something else entirely. First of all the author came across as a self centred, greedy ex model who had set her eyes on writing this book before even applying for the position of a hostess. She then headed off to Japan during the time of a Hostess Murder trial and then just happened to work in the same club (although renamed) as another hostess victim. During this novel she alluded to acting as the hostess for the murder suspect, grabbed as much as she could do and appears to have wanted to add a bit of spice to the second part of this offering by claiming that she fell in love with one of her clients. Add to the mix that she snorted drugs in a hotel and proceeded to glamorising the whole lifestyle and it left you feeling that she was damn lucky not to have become a victim herself.

Finally the author also claimed that as a hostess sex wasn’t on the menu and yet she’d spend nights in a hotel with clients and then proceeded to contradict known events about the Geisha and you really have to wonder who she was trying to convince. As a title it wasn’t that successful as I’d have preferred to have read this offering more as a Belle De Jour Memoir rather than what was presented here.

1 comment:

Pat Hollett said...

Nicely detailed comments and a direct opinion. Enjoyed the honesty in the review.