- Title: 21 Years of Wisdom: One Man’s Extraordinary Odyssey in Japan
- Author: Darrell Gartrell
- Genre: Business, Biography & History, Japan
- Length: 352 pages
- Publication Date: December 1, 2016
From the deadly streets of Los Angeles to celebrity success in the Far East, “21 Years of Wisdom: One Man’s Extraordinary Odyssey in Japan” chronicles Darrell Gartrell’s enthralling true-life adventure in the Far East. Narrowly escaping a police assault near the federal building where he worked, he left the country seeking better opportunities—backpacking across a dozen European countries in two years, emboldened by the diversity of the international landscape. In 1991, he arrived in Japan as the first African American most Japanese had ever seen. For many young people, he was the embodiment of a superstar. Soon, a local college hired him as their first black English instructor. It was the talk of the town. Gartrell’s star rose quickly. From his tiny, shoe-box apartment blossom a county-wide network of language boutiques he named Wisdom21, yet he was ill-prepared for its phenomenal growth. At its zenith, the company boasted six branches, dozens of employees, and thousands of clients nationwide. The success of his activities exposed him to a strata of society rarely experienced by a “gaijin”, or foreigner, in Japan. The companies demise—after two sensational decades—pitted him against an array of improbable characters including mob figures, government agents, and a woman scorned. 21 Years of Wisdom is the chilling, factual saga of Darrell Gartrell and his remarkable experience in Japan. His stunning race for survival documents his greatest achievements and as well as his biggest blunders. It is the kind of riveting, eye-opening story that every traveler on life’s highway needs to know, particularly those in search of their own path to wisdom in the 21st century.
About The Author
Dear Reader — Thank you for taking an interest in my first book publication, a true-life memoir. I was born and raised in the inner city of Los Angeles. When I was 11, I lost my father to Cancer. My mom did her best to raise me and my four sisters without a dad — and without a job. After a tumultuous upbringing, I finally completed a B.S.degree in finance in 1989 while working the night shift at the Federal Reserve Bank. I spent the next couple of years backpacking across a dozen countries in Europe, a journey that ultimately changed my life for good. A return to LA preceded a teaching stint at Compton high. With a desire to explore Asia, I landed in Osaka, Japan in 1991, and was so impressed with the city, I decided to stay. All these experiences and more I share in my tell-all book. Besides writing, my interests include international travel and culture, foreign language acquisition, listening to most genres of music, watching documentaries and biopics, reading non-fiction books (especially history and psychology), bar-hopping, and of course, entrepreneurship. Feel free to drop me a line at email@example.com or follow me on Twitter, Facebook or my personal blog.