Yakuza Moon: Memoirs Of A Gangster's Daughter

Yakuza Moon: Memoirs Of A Gangster's Daughter

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by Shoko Tendo, Louise Heal
     
 

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Born to a wealthy and powerful yakuza boss, Shoko Tendo lived the early years of her life in luxury. However, when she was six, everything changed: her father was jailed, and the family fell into debt. Bullied by her classmates because of her father's activities, and terrorized at home by her father, who became a drunken, violent monster after his release from

Overview


Born to a wealthy and powerful yakuza boss, Shoko Tendo lived the early years of her life in luxury. However, when she was six, everything changed: her father was jailed, and the family fell into debt. Bullied by her classmates because of her father's activities, and terrorized at home by her father, who became a drunken, violent monster after his release from prison, Tendo rebelled. As a teenager she became a drug addict and a member of a girl gang. At the age of 15 she spent eight months in a juvenile detention center after getting into a fight with another gang.

During Japan's bubble economy of the eighties, Tendo worked as a bar hostess, attracting many rich and loyal customers, and earning money to help her family out of debt. But there were also abusive clients, one of whom beat her so badly that her face was left permanently scarred. Her mother died, plunging Tendo into a depression so deep that she tried to commit suicide.

Somehow, Tendo overcame these tough times. A turning point was getting a full-body tattoo with a design centered on a geisha with a dagger in her mouth, an act that empowered her to change her life. She quit her job as a hostess. On her last day at work, she looked up at the full moon, which became a symbol of her struggle to become whole, and the title of the book she wrote as an epitaph for herself and her family.

The paperback edition of Yakuza Moon features 16-pages of never-before-seen photos of Tendos youth, family, and tattoos, as well as a new foreword by the author, describing her life since the book was first published four years ago.

"Emotionally complex and thoroughly heart-rending, this book is recommended for anyone searching for a more thorough and personal understanding of Japanese society. Publishers Weekly

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Emotionally complex and thoroughly heart-rending, this book is recommended for anyone searching for a more thorough and personal understanding of Japanese society." - Publishers Weekly

"The first female ever to break the code of silence and speak about life for women in the underworld...her best-selling memoir shocked [Japan]... with its graphic accounts of her addictions to sex, drugs and violent lovers." -Marie Claire

"[Tendo's] story...shines a light into a dark and little understood corner of modern Japan." -The Guardian

"The book offers a rare woman's view of Japan's criminal underbelly." -The Independent

"Much has been written about Japan's gangsterstheir full-body tattoos, boozing, womanizing, strict honor codes and occasional explosions of violence. Very little has been heard from their lovers, daughters or wives. Tendo has been all three." -Bloomberg

"A chilling and tawdry tale about family life and romance among the yakuza." -The Wall Street Journal

"A raw, heartbreaking account of damaged youth." -Bust

"A thrilling memoir...an exclusive glimpse into a life rarely experienced firsthand." -Time Out Chicago

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781568364384
Publisher:
Kodansha USA Publishing
Publication date:
09/07/2012
Pages:
216
Sales rank:
393,312
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author

Yakuza Moon is SHOKO TENDO's first book and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. Tendo lives in Tokyo with her baby daughter and works as a freelance writer.

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Yakuza Moon: Memoirs of a Gangster's Daughter 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 38 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yakuza Moon was a solid read from beginning to end. What I did not expect, was the feeling of inspiration I felt at the end. This book visits very dark and personal topics for the author, and I actually felt very grateful to her when I finished the book. It is short, and as it was the author's first book, it was lacking a bit in literary quality. However, I strongly recommend giving this one a try.
MRodriguez More than 1 year ago
It's been awhile since I got into a book because I am so busy with life and this one was definitely one to get me back into my groove.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A beautiful quick read. Wish it was a little longer, but very interesting and insightful
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You really go through this story fairly quickly, but despite that, it was a really interesting read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would NOT suggest anyone under the age of 17-18 to read this book (it does get fairly graphic with regard to certain situations). Beautifully written and a real eye-opener to life in Japan, especially with regard to the Yakuza lifestyle. One of my all-time favorite reads!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Yuccacat More than 1 year ago
I am always on the lookout for an amazing non-fiction saga! and YAKUZA MOON fits this to a T !!! A must read..on so many levels!
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EmkayB More than 1 year ago
This certainly hooked me in and kept me reading until I had read every last page. While I do not liked how so many woman in life let themselves be abused the way Tendo was, it was uplifting to read how she eventually got past that and moved herself up in the world. One word of warning - Tendo is very human and as such makes mistakes, but she keeps going on. This shows the bad side of Yakuza world for the family members rather than showing how cool or heroic the Yakuza are. This edition has a reaction/review by Manabu Miyazaki which is also a good read.
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ofeliaDCramirez More than 1 year ago
This memoir of Shoko-Tendo is a deep, heart wrenching and influential story. Growing up and being known as the daughter of a Yakuza gang leader was not easy on Shoko. Throughout Shoko's life she encounters moments of doing drugs, having sex and being violently beaten. Reading her lifelong struggles really impacted me, learning about the Yakuza gang and the nightlife of being a Yanki in Japan is really one that will shock and impact readers. What this woman had to go trough in her life were things that some people can relate to; may it be someone who has done drugs and the feeling of not being able to stop and it taking over your life. Or being in abusive relationship and feeling like there is no way out because for some reason you are still in love with them and you feel the need to stay with that person. She also struggles with money and that is something that many people can relate to. Shoko goes through all these struggles and still manages to become a successful woman, therefore is sending readers a powerful message. Reading this story really made me feel like I developed a connection with the author because of the way this book is written. It really shows how Shoko didn't hesitate when writing this book. She wanted people to know the struggles she went through and to send people a message that even though there will be moments in life that can make you feel like there is no more purpose, to pick yourself up and continue to strive for what you want. This book is so relatable because Shoko learns many lessons that we as readers end up learning, and the fact that she had to learn it the hard way really makes the book that much better. I would highly recommend this powerful book to readers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yakuza Moon is one of the best books I have ever read. The story kept me intact the whole time I was reading it. The trouble that Shoko went through was so surreal and nothing that I have ever heard of. She went though so much in her life and she still kept on going. Her troubles inspired me to keep going on in life. Shoko constantly left me in suspense and wanting to know what happens next in the book. Yakuza Moon is such an easy thing to read you never have to look up any words in a dictionary or online. One thing that I didn't like about the book is that I felt that it kind of got confusing at certain points. It seemed that it sort of left out an area or forgot to mention it in the book. I think that this is one of those books that does not get enough attention from readers. Once you open the book the story will grasp you and wont let go.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I never knew a person like Shoko that can bare with so much in her life and still live till this day and smile. The moment I opened Yakuza moon to its first page, there was no way I could put it down. It is amazing to see that, a person with such a great respectful history can turn a total 180 and shatter a person's morals. Shoko did not intend to live the life she did, but had to in order to, well-live. The book is intensely brutal when it came about her last moments of breath. But still, she was strong enough to overcome these physically and mentally abuses from herself and others in order to say she is the person she is today. In almost every chapter, drug & sex was a big factor, so you can really can an idea of what kind of life she lead. To put your life in a book that can somewhat be shameful, for others to read is truly what Shoko had to overcome.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago