Top positive review
A satirical look at an under-reported insurgency in Thailand
on 23 March 2014
A tale of a Bangkok ladyboy coerced into going undercover in the pondoks of southern Thailand to gather intelligence on the insurgency there. The story has moments of great satire, and some witty word play, and some fine stylistic nuances (especially the different narrations of Snooky, the ladyboy in question, and his Oxbridge don handler, Victor).
The novel doesn't quite hang together seamlessly, and could have been edited down a little, but overall this is an entertaining and intelligent satire on an under-reported war. At a time when Thailand is becoming increasingly divided between the middle class urban elite of Bangkok and the rural poor of the north- east, this book is a timely reminder that there is a third, forgotten Thailand - the three southernmost states, that are predominantly Muslim, ethnically Malay, and largely ignored by mainstream Thai society.