Thailand 1996. The Year of The Rat. Pete, a young travel writer, wanders into a Bangkok go-go bar and meets the love of his life. Joy is the girl of his dreams, young, stunningly pretty, and one of the Zombie Bar's top-earning pole dancers.
What follows is a roller-coaster ride of sex, drugs, and deception, as Pete discovers that his very own private dancer is not all she claims to be. And that far from being the girl of his dreams, Joy is his own personal nightmare.
©2005 Stephen Leather (P)2015 Isis Publishing Ltd
An unforgettable story which rings so true it's spooky. Also brilliantly performed by Thorpe and Bond. Highly recommended.
"Excellent! Couldn't put it down."
I read lots of reviews on this (on Goodreads etc) before purchasing it. Some hated it, those wanting lots of detailed sex, and those for whom the sleazy context and incidents were too much. I was struck by the reviews of many readers who have lived in Bangkok and recognised this as an accurate account. Although the characters were not richly drawn insofar as we learned little about them other than what was happening day-to-day and their views on it. However, this did not detract from the story at all. This was all about exploring the psychosocial relationships in and around the sex industry in Bangkok. I don't Like spoilers and I won't give them here. Suffice to say that Pete was a somewhat sympathetic character early on, but for me, later, not so much. Joy, on the other hand seemed entirely predatory at first, but later I had learned enough to see that her motivation was not malicious. This book is entertaining, gripping, often uncomfortable listening/reading, but more thought provoking and illuminating than anything I have read or listened to before. The ending is not predictable and the narration is perfect.
"Loved it, a real eye opener!"
Having only visited Thailand once before I have to say I must have had my eyes closed I saw nothing of the content of this book however, after discussing with a friend who travels there twice a year it seems this is a realistic overview of all that unfolds in this well narrated story. ✳️✳️✳️✳️✳️
I have read most of Stephen Leathers books and enjoyed them all. This was poor, very very poor. A boring diatribe about a weak pharang (foreigner), a love sick puppy with no self esteem, who continues to whine and complain about his inability to accept the cultural differences of a Thai society that does not share his western values. Rubbish!
"So very true history"
Having voyaged in Thailand as a backpacker I came across this story in real life five times in three months ,sadly it's so true
Beware weak men at any age traveling to beautiful Thailand ,this book is a must to read Before you go
I was completely absorbed, frustrated, angry and annoyed by a gripping and fascinating story - an enjoyable few hours crossing the globe into another world.
I read this book about 8 many years ago when I was working in Hong Kong.
it gives a great insight into the culture of Thailand, of which I have visited many times and have friends there.
My copy of the book has done a few rounds around my office where I have handed it to anyone I hear travelling to Thailand.
Well worth a read or listen if you are thinking of travelling to Thailand.
There is one error in the reading in chapter 36 at 13:18. it was joy not Joe.
After having read many books Steven leather, I can't believe he could write and publish this.
It was boring repetitive rubbish, much to long for this poor excuse for a real Leather book.
The narration by David Thorpe was the only thing ,good about this rubbish.
I going to ask for a refund
"Not what I expected"
I've listened to a few of Stephen Leathers books and have always enjoyed them. This was totally different not at all what I expected, interesting idea, well read & performed.
I found myself taking sides of the 2 main characters and then changing my mind again & again
Power listened to this, I couldn't stop myself
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