Lesley Downer

downer_lesley_apr15Lesley Downer is a novelist, writer and journalist whose passion is Japan.  She has lived there off and on for more than fifteen years out of the last thirty.

Her non-fiction works include Madame Sadayakko: The Geisha who Seduced the West, the biography of the woman who was Puccini’s model for Madame Butterfly; and The Brothers: The Hidden World of Japan’s Richest Family, the epic saga of the loves, lives and rivalries of a Japanese business dynasty (founders of the Muji shops, among much else).  She is the author of Geisha: The Secret History of a Vanishing World, the definitive work on geishas past and present.

She is now concentrating on fiction.  She has written three novels:  The Last Concubine, a love story set in civil war Japan, shortlisted for Romantic Novel of the Year 2009; The Courtesan and the Samurai; and Across a Bridge of Dreams (published in paperback as The Samurai’s Daughter).  She recently completed the fourth, provisionally entitled Woman Behind the Screens.

She lives in London with her husband, physicist and author Arthur I. Miller, with frequent trips to Tokyo and New York.

Agent:  Bill Hamilton, AM Heath & Co.

Website:  www.lesleydowner.com

e mail:  lesley@lesleydowner.com