Thai Private Eye

Thai Private Eye Pdf

Thai Private Eye

Author: ,

Publisher: Monsoon Books

ISBN: 981435807X

Genre: Travel

Page: 272

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Book Summary: This volume - the follow-up to Olson’s bestselling "Confessions of a Bangkok Private Eye" - serves up more juicy portions of what goes on under the veneer in Thailand and includes stories deemed too hot to include in the first book for fear of repercussions. It also includes recent cases, where state-of-the-art surveillance devices and other advances in the dark arts of private investigation have made it easier to uncover dirt deep below the surface. This is a book that reads like exciting fiction, with one big difference: every story is true. Only the names and related identifying details have been changed to protect the innocent along with the guilty. These chronicles of a decade lived dangerously in the Land of Crooked Smiles will, by turns, entertain, shock, inflame and inform you.


Confessions of a Bangkok PI

Confessions of a Bangkok PI Pdf

Confessions of a Bangkok PI

Author: Warren Olson

Publisher: Monsoon Books

ISBN: 9814358002

Genre: True Crime

Page: 272

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Book Summary: Two-timing bargirls, suspicious spouses and lesbian lovers - it was all in a day's work for Bangkok Private Eye Warren Olson. For more than a decade, Olson walked the mean streets of the Big Mango. Fluent in Thai and Khmer, he was able to go where other private eyes feared to tread. His clients included Westerners who had lost their hearts and life savings to moneyhungry bargirls. But he had more than his fair share of Thai clients, too, including a sweet old lady who was ripped off by a Christian conman and a Thai girl blackmailed by a former lover. The stories are based on Olson's case files, disguised to protect the innocent and the guilty by bestselling author Stephen Leather. Olson has now relocated to his native New Zealand with his Thai wife and daughter, but the agency that he founded is still open for business at www.thaiprivateeye.com.


Bangkok 8

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Bangkok 8

Author: John Burdett

Publisher: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard

ISBN: 1400040914

Genre: Fiction

Page: 336

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Book Summary: A thriller with attitude to spare, Bangkok 8 is a sexy, razor-edged, often darkly hilarious novel set in one of the world’s most exotic cities. Witnessed by a throng of gaping spectators, a charismatic Marine sergeant is murdered under a Bangkok bridge inside a bolted-shut Mercedes Benz. Among the witnesses are the only two cops in the city not on the take, but within moments one is murdered and his partner, Sonchai Jitpleecheep—a devout Buddhist and the son of a Thai bar girl and a long-gone Vietnam War G.I.—is hell-bent on wreaking revenge. On a vigilante mission to capture his partner’s murderer, Sonchai is begrudgingly paired with a beautiful FBI agent named Jones and captures her heart in the process. In a city fueled by illicit drugs and infinite corruption, prostitution and priceless art, Sonchai’s quest for vengeance takes him into a world much more sinister than he could have ever imagined.


Thailand Confidential

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Thailand Confidential

Author: Jerry Hopkins

Publisher: Tuttle Publishing

ISBN: 1462900240

Genre: Travel

Page: 256

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Book Summary: "Wanna stand in the face of a charging elephant, get hit by a motorcycle, eat giant water bugs, blowtorch your mouth on some of the hottest chili peppers on earth, then go watch a sex change operation? Of course you don't, but, happily, Jerry Hopkins has done all that and more—lots more—in this darkly humorous, deeply affectionate, clear-eyed but never patronizing portrait of Thailand, his adopted home. Highly recommended." —Tim Cahill, author of Lost in My Own Backyard, Hold the Enlightenment and Jaguars Ripped My Flesh "After over a decade in the country, Hopkins knows and loves his subject dearly—that much is obvious—and his vivid portrait projects that love from every page." —Jann Wenner, editor and founder of Rolling Stone Magazine "A loving expose of everything that's wonderful about Thailand, and much that isn't. Should be required reading for all newcomers." —Joe Cummings, author of the Lonely Planet Thailand Guide Writer Jerry Hopkins came to Thailand for a visit in the 1980s, and ended up a permanent resident with a temporary visa—a big, white farang haunting the bars and back alleys of Bangkok. His essays explore the mystery and mayhem of "The Land of Smiles" to hilarious—and sometimes disturbing—effect. Travel with him to a place where whisky is rum, water buffaloes are gay, insects are dinner, dildos are lucky charms, and your wildest adolescent fantasies can come true (for a nominal fee).


Bangkok Tattoo

Bangkok Tattoo Pdf

Bangkok Tattoo

Author: John Burdett

Publisher: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard

ISBN: 1400044901

Genre: Fiction

Page: 320

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Book Summary: Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep of the Royal Thai Police returns in his riveting and smokily atmospheric new thriller.A farang–a foreigner–has been murdered, his body horribly mutilated, at the Bangkok brothel co-owned by Sonchai’s mother and his boss. The dead man was a CIA agent. To make matters worse, the apparent culprit is sweet-natured Chanya, the brothel’s top earner and a woman whom the devoutly Buddhist sleuth has loved for several lifetimes. How can Sonchai solve this crime without sending Chanya to prison? How can he engage in a cover-up without endangering his karma? And how will he ever get to the bottom of a case whose interested parties include American spooks, Muslim fundamentalists, and gangsters from three countries? As addictive as opium, as hot as Sriracha chili sauce, and bursting with surprises, Bangkok Tattoo will leave its mark on you.


Red-Light Nights, Bangkok Daze

Red-Light Nights, Bangkok Daze Pdf

Red-Light Nights, Bangkok Daze

Author: William Sparrow

Publisher: Monsoon Books

ISBN: 9814358010

Genre: Travel

Page: 272

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Book Summary: Sexy, entertaining, and thoroughly informative, this collection of reports offers a glimpse into what is enticing, insightful, and unknown about sex in Asia. It looks at the sex scenes and unseens in the ‘usual suspects’ of Thailand, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Japan as well as in less obvious countries such as Pakistan, China, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Covering the gamut of love, lust, passion, and pleasure across Asia, these articles offer unique insights into the sometimes shadowy world of the carnal pleasures on offer and the hypocrisies surrounding them. Gathered from the views of unrepentant ‘sexpats’, wayward tourists, and the locals themselves, in Red-light Nights, Bangkok Daze, you’ll find revelations about the varied experiences this huge cast of characters participates in. Succumb to the lights, and weather the daze; you’ll find yourself exhilarated and waking to a newfound awareness of the complex, interesting and yet confusing world of sex in Asia.


Her Nightly Embrace

Her Nightly Embrace Pdf

Her Nightly Embrace

Author: Adi Tantimedh

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1501130595

Genre: Fiction

Page: 320

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Book Summary: The first in a trilogy of whip-smart novels—currently in development as a TV series set to star Sendhil Ramamurthy (NBC’s Heroes and Heroes Reborn)—about a destructive private investigator and his eccentric coworkers, who handle cases so high-profile that they never make the headlines. Ravi Chandra Singh is the last guy you’d expect to become a private detective. A failed religious scholar, he now works for Golden Sentinels, an upmarket London private investigations agency. His colleagues are a band of gleefully amoral and brilliant screw-ups: Ken and Clive, a pair of brutal ex-cops who are also a gay couple; Mark Chapman, a burned-out stoner hiding a great mind; Marcie Holder, a cheerful former publicist; Benjamin Lee, a techie prankster from South London; David Okri, an ambitious lawyer from a well-connected Nigerian immigrant family; and Olivia Wong, an upper-class Hong Kong financial analyst hiding her true skills as one of the most dangerous hackers in the world—all under the watchful eye of Roger Golden, wheeler-dealer extraordinaire, and his mysterious office manager, Cheryl Hughes. Thrust into a world where the rich, famous, and powerful hire him to solve their problems and wash their dirty laundry, Ravi finds himself in over his head with increasingly gonzo and complex cases – and the recent visions that he’s been having of Hindu gods aren’t helping. As Ravi struggles to stay ahead of danger, he wonders if the things he’s seeing are a delusion – or if he might, in fact, be an unrecognized shaman of the modern world...


The Bangkok Asset

The Bangkok Asset Pdf

The Bangkok Asset

Author: John Burdett

Publisher: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard

ISBN: 0385353200

Genre: Fiction

Page: 320

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Book Summary: Sonchai Jitpleecheep—the brash and beguiling Royal Thai Police Force detective who has been our guide through John Burdett’s five previous acclaimed Bangkok novels—is back. The former monk and devout Buddhist, forever battling to protect his karma from the assaults of morally compromising cases, is now faced with the most horrifying technological innovation to make its way to the streets of Bangkok, and a conspiracy of almost unfathomable reach. With Sonchai on this case is the young female inspector Krom. Like Sonchai, she’s an outsider on the police force, but unlike him, she is socially savvy and a technological prodigy. When they’re called to a demonstration—in the midst of a typhoon—of the deadly, superhuman strength of an American man who is seemingly controlled by a CIA operative, they have no idea what they’re actually witnessing or why. Their reliably obtuse and unequivocally crooked boss, Colonel Vikorn, explains some of it, but the most telling questions remain unanswered: Could the Americans have figured out a way to create a physically and psychologically enhanced supersoldier? Are they testing him—or it—on Thai soil? And why is everyone, from the Bangkok police to the international community, so eager to turn a blind eye? Searching for the answers to these questions, Sonchai and Krom find themselves in a remote Cambodian jungle compound for aging American ex-soldiers, where they will discover just how far a government will go to protect its worst secrets—both past and present. But the case will also have much more personal repercussions for Sonchai, shaking his world to its very foundation and perhaps finally forcing him to confront his long-lost American father.


Asia Hand

Asia Hand Pdf

Asia Hand

Author: Christopher G. Moore

Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic

ISBN: 0802196861

Genre: Fiction

Page: 288

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Book Summary: Christopher G. Moore’s prize-winning series of Bangkok thrillers featuring Vincent Calvino, a disbarred American lawyer turned PI, have been praised for their captivating plots, engaging characters, and insight into the steamy Thai capital. In Asia Hand, the second novel in the series, Bangkok is celebrating Chinese New Year when Calvino’s revels are cut short. The body of an American, an acquaintance of Calvino’s, has been fished out of the lake in Lumpini Park. Around his neck are a string of wooden amulets, the kind upcountry Thais wear to protect themselves from evil spirits. Only rather than saving Hutton, these have killed him. A freelance cameraman scraping by on the margins, Hutton had photographed something shortly before his death that he thought would make his career. Now the footage—a shocking execution on the Thai/Burmese border—is running repeatedly on CNN, and the rights to Hutton’s life story have been sold to a Hollywood producer. But who killed Hutton and why? When Calvino investigates, he collides with a powerful filmmaker and an experienced old Asia hand who knows the terrain as well as our man in Bangkok. It’s all Calvino can do to stay alive, and find out who killed his fellow American.


Catherine Lim Collection

Catherine Lim Collection Pdf

Catherine Lim Collection

Author: Jim Algie

Publisher: Marshall Cavendish International Asia Pte Ltd

ISBN: 9814351865

Genre: Travel

Page: 335

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Book Summary: Bizarre Thailand takes readers off the well-rutted road of tourist hotspots into the darkest and sexiest hinterlands. Welcome to a twilight zone where travellers become soldiers and cowboys, a black magician courts politicians and film stars, sacred tortoises mate on the streets of a small town, and Fertility Goddesses are wooed with massive phalluses.In this strange land, nothing is what it seems: a prison becomes a tourist attraction, a 20-storey robot is a building, a man becomes a beauty queen, a Buddhist temple turns into hell on earth, a loving wife is immortalized as the most famous and ferocious of all phantoms, and a serial killer’s corpse is reincarnated as a museum exhibit.Bizarre Thailand takes an irreverent look at how the profound, profane and frankly quite odd intertwine with the rhythms and flows of everyday Thai life, paying homage to the quintessential culture of one of Southeast Asia's most captivating destinations.


My Thai Girl and I

My Thai Girl and I Pdf

My Thai Girl and I

Author: Andrew Hicks

Publisher: Monsoon Books

ISBN: 9814358657

Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 296

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Book Summary: This is about how Andrew Hicks met Cat, a ‘Thai girl’ half his age and how they set up home together in her village out in the rice fields of North Eastern Thailand. He'll tell you of toads in the toilet, of ants' eggs for breakfast, how they took up frog farming and how he got married without really meaning to. It's also a book about the countryside, of the old Thailand where the rhythm of the seasons and belief in the spirits and Buddhism remain strong. Though how could Andrew, a greying English lawyer, ever fit into the lives of a Thai rice farming family? Can Cat and Andrew with their many differences really be compatible?


Vulture Peak

Vulture Peak Pdf

Vulture Peak

Author: John Burdett

Publisher: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard

ISBN: 0307596583

Genre: Fiction

Page: 304

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Book Summary: Nobody knows Bangkok like Royal Thai Police Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep, and there is no one quite like Sonchai: a police officer who has kept his Buddhist soul intact—more or less—despite the fact that his job shoves him face-to-face with some of the most vile and outrageous crimes and criminals in Bangkok. But for his newest assignment, everything he knows about his city—and himself—will be a mere starting point. He’s put in charge of the highest-profile criminal case in Thailand—an attempt to bring an end to trafficking in human organs. He sets in motion a massive sting operation and stays at its center, traveling to Phuket, Hong Kong, Dubai, Shanghai, and Monte Carlo. He draws in a host of unwitting players that includes an aging rock star wearing out his second liver and the mysterious, diabolical, albeit gorgeous co-queenpins of the international body-parts trade: the Chinese twins known as the Vultures. And yet, it’s closer to home that Sonchai will discover things getting really dicey: rumors will reach him suggesting that his ex-prostitute wife, Chanya, is having an affair. Will Sonchai be enlightened enough—forget Buddha, think jealous husband—to cope with his very own compromised and compromising world? All will be revealed here, in John Burdett’s most mordantly funny, propulsive, fiendishly entertaining novel yet.


Chaiyo!

Chaiyo! Pdf

Chaiyo!

Author: Walter F. Vella

Publisher: University of Hawaii Press

ISBN: 0824880307

Genre: History

Page: 364

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Book Summary: Throughout his fifteen-year reign (1910-1925), King Vajiravudh, absolute monarch of Siam, attempted to foster a spirit of nationalism among the Thai, to unite the Thai people and make them proud of their land and their heritage. He hoped to save his country from expanding Western imperialism by infusing his people with the Western ideology of loyalty to the state. This book documents all the many forms the King's nationalistic efforts assumed, ranging from the establishment of a para-military patriotic organization called the Wild Tiger Corps to the encouragement of the team sports and the coining of a new cheer, Chaiyo! ("Victory!"). Vajiravudh was a prolific writer, and his hortatory articles, plays, poems, and speeches are analyzed in terms of the King's message to his people to be Thai, to act Thai, and to think Thai. Chaiyo! adds greatly to an understanding of the emergence of modern Thailand. It is also an important addition to studies of the impact of the West and the emergence of nationalism in Asia as a whole during the period of World War I. The findings will be of value not only to historians but also to political scientists and, indeed, to all those interested in the development of Asia or in the growth of nationalism anywhere in the world.


The Half-Child

The Half-Child Pdf

The Half-Child

Author: Angela Savage

Publisher: Text Publishing

ISBN: 1921799668

Genre: Fiction

Page: 336

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Book Summary: Jayne Keeney is a fiesty thirty-something private investigator who has been living in Bangkok for many years. She has been hired to investigate the alleged suicide of a young Australian woman in a seedy Thai coastal town. Maryanne Delbeck was happy and harmless, her father refuses to believe she took her own life. Jayne immerses herself in the case, navigating the backstreet world of Thai ladyboys, monks, strippers, expats and corrupt officials. Maryanne's death is not the only mystery awaiting Jayne among Pattaya's neon signs and go-go bars. While working undercover at the orphanage where Maryanne volunteered, Jayne discovers something far more sinister. Now her life is in danger, her case is still unsolved and she barely has time for dinner with her handsome new love interest, Rajiv. With love and death both circling, Jayne now has two cases to crack and very little time to do it. Angela Savage is a Melbourne-based crime writer, who has lived and travelled extensively in Asia. Her first novel, Behind the Night Bazaar won the 2004 Victorian Premier's Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript. She is a winner of the Scarlett Stiletto Award and has twice been shortlisted for Ned Kelly awards. textpublishing.com.au 'Clever and funny, The Half-Child is full of clashing cultures and a rich sense of place.' Kerry Greenwood 'This page-turner hooks you in from the start. 4 stars' Cosmopolitan Funny, heart-wrenching and informative, Savage's heroine is someone readers will want to share a beer with. 4 Stars.' Big Issue 'Angela Savage must have to be one of the most talented authors I have come across, and her novel The Half-Child does not disappoint...It is not only a crime novel, but a mixture of genres rolled into one. There is romance, heartache and a cultural synopsis of Thailand - the good and bad. Savage has written a well-researched piece...' Launceston Examiner 'One of the most satisfying aspects of this series is its sense of place...Stylish and witty...with rich characterisation and the portrait of a complex culture under threat from both within and without. Savage has an important point to make.' Sydney Morning Herald 'Savage not only skillfully entertains her readers but also makes us think poignantly and enlighteningly about the big questions of equality and exploitation, sacrifice and the true nature of courage. 5 stars.' Adelaide Advertiser 'This is a gripping novel; an unromanticised travel guide to today's Thailand; a critique of Western missionary endeavours; and a warning to naive young people who stumble into volunteer work without the necessary skills.' Australian Bookseller and Publisher


The Last Detective

The Last Detective Pdf

The Last Detective

Author: Robert Crais

Publisher: Ballantine Books

ISBN: 0385504276

Genre: Fiction

Page: 400

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Book Summary: With his acclaimed bestsellers, Hostage and Demolition Angel, Robert Crais drew raves for his unstoppable pacing, edgy characterizations, and cinematic prose. Now, Crais returns to his signature character, Los Angeles private investigator Elvis Cole, in a masterful page-turner that probes the meaning of family and the burdens of the past. Elvis Cole is back... Elvis Cole's relationship with attorney Lucy Chenier is strained. When she moved from Louisiana to join Elvis in Los Angeles, she never dreamed that violence would so easily touch her life—but then the unthinkable happens. While Lucy is away on business and her ten-year-old son, Ben, is staying with Elvis, Ben disappears without a trace. Desperate to believe that the boy has run away, evidence soon mounts to suggest a much darker scenario. Joining forces with his enigmatic partner, Joe Pike, Elvis frantically searches for Ben with the help of LAPD Detective Carol Starkey, as Lucy's wealthy, oil-industry ex-husband attempts to wrest control of the investigation. Amid the maelstrom of personal conflicts, Elvis and Joe are forced to consider a more troubling lead—one indicating that Ben's disappearance is connected to a terrible, long-held secret from Elvis Cole's past. Venturing deep inside a complex psyche, Crais explores Elvis's need for family—the military that embraced him during a troubled adolescence, his rock-solid partnership with Pike, and his floundering relationship with Lucy—as they race the clock in their search for Ben. The Last Detective is Robert Crais' richest, most intense tale of suspense yet.


Child Custody a to Z

Child Custody a to Z Pdf

Child Custody a to Z

Author: Guy White

Publisher: iUniverse

ISBN: 0595784585

Genre: Family & Relationships

Page: 232

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Book Summary: Help! is the first word a parent yells when dealing with a child custody battle. Author Guy White cuts through and captures the essence of how child custody cases are won and lost. Child Custody A to Z navigates you through the flawed system of justice. Evidence is the most overlooked aspect of a child custody case. This book explains and addresses: How to choose an attorney How to impeach court experts How to gather evidence How to expose a personality disorder How to investigate your case Child Custody A to Z is replete with case studies that tell the real story of the controversial game of child custody. There is no substitute for preparation. White reveals judges, attorneys and court experts for their bias and incompetence. The author takes you through the step-by-step formula for winning with evidence.


Hunters in the Dark

Hunters in the Dark Pdf

Hunters in the Dark

Author: Lawrence Osborne

Publisher: Hogarth

ISBN: 0553447351

Genre: Fiction

Page: 320

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Book Summary: From the novelist the New York Times compares to Paul Bowles, Evelyn Waugh and Ian McEwan, an evocative new work of literary suspense Adrift in Cambodia and eager to side-step a life of quiet desperation as a small-town teacher, 28-year-old Englishman Robert Grieve decides to go missing. As he crosses the border from Thailand, he tests the threshold of a new future. And on that first night, a small windfall precipitates a chain of events-- involving a bag of “jinxed” money, a suave American, a trunk full of heroin, a hustler taxi driver, and a rich doctor’s daughter-- that changes Robert’s life forever. Hunters in the Dark is a sophisticated game of cat and mouse redolent of the nightmares of Patricia Highsmith, where identities are blurred, greed trumps kindness, and karma is ruthless. Filled with Hitchcockian twists and turns, suffused with the steamy heat and pervasive superstition of the Cambodian jungle, and unafraid to confront difficult questions about the machinations of fate, this is a masterful novel that confirms Lawrence Osborne’s reputation as one of our finest contemporary writers.


Thailand: Deadly Destination

Thailand: Deadly Destination Pdf

Thailand: Deadly Destination

Author: John Stapleton

Publisher: A Sense Of Place Publishing

ISBN: 099254873X

Genre: Travel

Page: 208

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Book Summary: The daily robbing, bashing, drugging, extortion and murder of foreign tourists on Thai soil, along with numerous scandals involving unsafe facilities and well established scams, has led to frequent predictions that Thailand's multi-billion dollar tourist industry will self-destruct. Instead tourist numbers more than doubled in the decade to 2014. The world might not have come to the hometowns of the many visitors fascinated by Thailand, but it certainly came to the Land of Smiles. While the Thai media is heavily censored, and bad news stories about tourists suppressed, nonetheless there is more than enough evidence to demonstrate that something has gone seriously awry with the nation's tourist industry. In 2014, just as in the years preceding it, there were train, bus, ferry, speedboat, motorbike and car accidents, murders, knifings, unexplained deaths, numerous suicides, diving accidents, robberies gone wrong, anonymous bodies washing up on the shores and a string of alcohol and drug related incidents. Thailand had a dying king and serious succession problems, weak democratic institutions, an economy slipping into recession, faced issues of corruption across many of its key services and was host to international crime syndicates, awash with despised foreigners and drifting perilously towards civil war. Tourists choose one destination over another for a number of reasons, most of which Thailand scores highly on. But on the core issue of tourist safety, Thailand scores very badly indeed.


Thailand Crackers

Thailand Crackers Pdf

Thailand Crackers

Author: Peter Jaggs

Publisher: Booksmango

ISBN: 1633232921

Genre: Travel

Page: 171

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Book Summary: Peter Jaggs has probably written and sold more books about the raunchier side of life in Thailand than any other author alive or dead. The brutal accuracy of his writing in a genre that is unavoidably always going to be controversial has inevitably provoked reaction from offended internet trolls accusing him of being a faker, a reprobate or even worse. Much more credible reviews in the Thai and ex-pat media on TV and in leading newspapers have described Jaggs as being (quote) ‘a highly-skilled writer, supremely confident in his craft’ and appraised his books as being ‘Modern Classics of Pattaya’ and ‘the best books on Pattaya written’. Whether you love his tales or hate them, it is undeniable that they are never boring. Jaggs has written himself into the history of the night-streets of Thailand and his work will surely continue to be read and discussed for as long as people visit the country. The stories in Thailand Crackers are vintage Jaggs and concentrate on the off-beat lives of eighteen resourceful entrepreneurs who live by their wits on the streets of a country where life can be hard. They include the accounts of an alcoholic septuagenarian mamasan, a teenage drug dealer, a hill-tribe grandfather, a bar-girl without a heart, an evil confidence trickster and a love-struck street dog; all told with the author’s usual colorful candidness that will disappoint neither his supporters nor his detractors and give them plenty of food for thought to get their teeth into.


The Eye of God

The Eye of God Pdf

The Eye of God

Author: James Rollins

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0062194917

Genre: Fiction

Page: 576

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Book Summary: In The Eye of God, a Sigma Force novel, New York Times bestselling author James Rollins delivers an apocalyptic vision of a future predicted by the distant past. In the wilds of Mongolia, a research satellite has crashed, triggering an explosive search for its valuable cargo: a code-black physics project connected to the study of dark energy—and a shocking image of the eastern seaboard of the United States in utter ruin. At the Vatican, a package arrives containing two strange artifacts: a skull scrawled with ancient Aramaic and a tome bound in human skin. DNA evidence reveals that both came from the same body: the long dead Mongol king Genghis Khan. Commander Gray Pierce and Sigma Force set out to discover a truth tied to the fall of the Roman Empire, to a mystery going back to the birth of Christianity, and to a weapon hidden for centuries that holds the fate of humanity.