This book and author were recommended to me by a "reader", so I got it with high hopes. It has an interesting setting, with exotic charac..Show More »ters but alas, it's just another detective-gets-bad-people-with-the-help-of a-hot-smart-chick, (not that's there's anything wrong with that).
But there are SO many writers saturating the "Scooby doo" genre (including vampires, aliens and the like/unlike) that a story, THE STORY needs to be even more engaging and compelling. This one isn't.
I recommend: "I Am Pilgrim", the Matthew Corbitt series and without a doubt, Stephen King's Bill Hodges.
This book introduces Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep and the extraordinary milieu in which he operates. I had previously read Bangkok Haunts which is..Show More » one of the sequels, so I knew what to expect. The book is at once sleazy, refreshing, intrigueing and edgy, and is a major departure from the conventional cop thriller. It is definitely a good listen, and the narration by Glen McCready is first class. It would have garnered 4 stars, but lost a star when the author lapsed into explanation mode for much of its second half.
Bangkok Tattoo is probably the most compelling book I've encountered in the nearly three years I've been an Audible listener. It is a great many cont..Show More »radictory things: violent, compassionate, graphic, delicate, sexual, sensual, spiritual, surreal, earthy, funny at times, horrible at others, extremely well written and well read. The character development is superb, and the portrait of Bangkok is fascinating. It's an incredible read. Audible offers Burdett's Bangkok 8 (the first of this series) only in an abridged version, so I bought a hardcopy so that I could experience every word. I was not disappointed.
I'm not sure where the other reviewers are coming from. Perhaps it's a matter of morality. Burdett makes no judgments. Bangkok is presented "as is," as are the characters. Prostitutes, corrupt police officials, transexuals, madams, American tourists, most of whom are men who come to Bangkok specifically for sexual purposes--all of these are presented, not sympathetically, but as human beings rather than as caricatures.
I cannot recommend this book too highly, and I urge Audible to find an unabridged version of Bangkok 8 for us, as well. BTW, although Bangkok 8 is a precursor to this book, it is not necessary to have read it first. There are a few things you will not know, but each book stands on its own--a moving experience that will haunt you long after you've finished it.
This writer was a wonderful discovery for me. In terms of both the story and the characters, "original" hardly says enough. Warning: ther..Show More »e's a mountain of graphic sex, and plenty of truly obscene violence. It's all part of the picture, but it might be too much for some. I found parts of it hard to read, though worth the discomfort. The humor is maybe the best part -- weird but hilarious. I'm torn whether this is a 4 or a 5 only because the writer is still a bit amateurish. He makes grammatical errors and non-compute phrases (like tears coming out of the retina), has some mild plot holes (why would having sex be blackmailable?) and falls in love with some words and overuses them ("frisson," for example). But in tribute to a fabulous story, I'll leave it a 5.
The reader is a good actor but is wrong for the part. He's the ultimate occidental/Anglo-Saxon. Also, he sounds smug and pompous rather than practical and self-effacing as the protagonist is written. All his statements are lobbed at you like pronouncements. And though he seems to have studied how to pronounce words like Supatra and Chanya, he didn't bother with others, like Nippon, or sake (sacky! ugh! yuck!).
The story in this book is just as different from any other mystery as the other of the series. Very good plot, the characters are well worked out. So..Show More »nchai Jitpleecheep, the Thai Buddhist policeman is so interesting when combining his beliefs, work, and private life. This is no gentle book and delves in dark plots and humor. I have all the John Burdett previous books in the series and enjoyed the readers very much. The accents were perfect. I cannot say the same for Stephen Hogan. His accent is British, not Thai sounding at all. Also, it was difficult at times to tell which character was speaking. They should go back to the original reader, much more entertaining.
Stunning, terrifying, must read in case this is our future
A truly frightening possible future, given the direction of technology and the desperately unenlightened behavior of the human race.
Though..Show More » performed with admirably dramatic reading, the sound engineering is flawed for listening in any but the quietest environment. I listen while driving and the huge difference in volume between emphatic and whispered words--often in the same sentence--made it nearly impossible to find a usable volume setting. I had to frequently backspace, turn up the volume, relisten, then turn it down again.
But it was worth the effort. Get this book now. The best of the Bangkok series.