Books Like Letters from Thailand
Thailand has rich history and culture, from stunning beaches and beautiful temples to quiet rural getaways and bustling cities. Some people visit for the wildlife while others are drawn to the parties and nightlife, but no matter their reasons for going to Thailand, the country leaves an impression on everyone. For these reasons, many authors also choose Thailand as an exotic and interesting location for their stories. For example, in Letters from Thailand by Botan, a young man leaves China to make his fortune in Thailand at the close of World War II and describes daily life in the bustling city of Bangkok. For more books that feature Thailand as a prominent setting check out the following books like Letters from Thailand.
by S.P. Somtow
Jasmine Nights is a coming-of-age story set in Thailand by S.P. Somtow. The protagonist, Justin, is known as “Little Frog” to his family and lives with his maiden aunts on the family estate in Bangkok in the early 1960s. Justin is reluctant to embrace his Thai heritage and instead insists on only speaking English and eating English food. While initially, his only friend is his pet chameleon, Justin’s world opens up when he befriends a black American boy named Virgil and embarks on all kinds of satirical and surreal adventures.
by John Burdett
Bangkok Eight by John Burdett is a gritty thriller set in Bangkok where a US marine sergeant is killed inside a locked Mercedes by snakes. Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep of the Royal Thail Police Force and his partner, Pichai arrive at the scene, but Pichai is killed by the same snakes that bit the marine sergeant. As one of the only policemen in the city not on the take, Sonchai is determined to solve the murder and avenge the death of his partner. The case is personal for Sonchai as he is a devout Buddhist and Pichai was his soul brother.
by Tony Parsons
Catching the Sun by Tony Parsons is set on the island of Phuket in Thailand. After a traumatic burglary at his home in London, Tom Finn jumps at the opportunity to accept a job offer in Thailand and move his family to Phuket. However, while Thailand initially looks like the tropical paradise that Tom always dreamed about things quickly go wrong when the actions of his new employer cause some legal issues for him. As Tom and his family continue to have to deal with the fallout of this event it is their Thai neighbors that help them to find their feet on the island.
by Colin Cotterill
Killed at the Whim of a Hat by Colin Cotterill is the first novel in the Jimm Juree Mysteries series that is set in present-day rural Thailand. Jimm Jurree is a crime reported for the Chiang Mai Daily Mail in northern Thailand but is forced to follow her eccentric family when they move to a rural village on the coast of Southern Thailand. Jimm is convinced that it is the end of her career, but finds herself drawn into local murder mysteries when a van containing the skeletal remains of two hippies is unearthed in a field followed by the murder of an abbot at the local Buddhist temple. However, for Jimm to make a name for herself and unravel the mysteries of these events she’s going to need the help of her entire family.
by Angela Savage
The protagonist of Behind the Night Bazaar by Angela Savage is Jayne Keeney, a thirsty-something Australian working as a private investigator in Bangkok. After sustaining an injury during an investigation Jayne decides to take a break and visit her close friend Didier in Chiang Mai. However, the trip turns tragic due to the deaths of Didier and his friend. The police claim that Didier was the murderer and was killed while resisting arrest, but Jayne knows that there is more to the story and is determined to clear his name. The only way to do so is to investigate and find out who the real killer was.
by Christopher G. Moore
Spirit House is the first book in the Vincent Calvino Crime novel series by Christopher G. Moore. When a foreigner named Ben Hoadly is murdered in Bangkok the police suspect a young paint-thinner addict. While the young addict claims that he killed the expat-Brit, American PI Vincent Calvino believes otherwise after seeing the heavy bruises on the kid’s face. Calvino ends up working on the case for Hoadly’s wealthy father and sets out to find the killer. However, it is a case that will plunge him into a dangerous world of addicts, dealers, hitmen, and other perils.
by Timothy Hallinan
A Nail Through the Heart by Timothy Hallinan features a travel writer named Poke Rafferty who is making a life for himself in Bangkok after the city stole his heart. Things are going pretty well for him as he is in a relationship with a former go-go dancer named Rose who he wants to marry and a street child named Miaow who he wants to adopt. However, his good intentions get him into trouble when he takes in a friend of Miaow, agrees to find a distraught Australian woman’s missing uncle, and agrees to help an old woman find a blackmailing thief. While these three events appear to be completely unrelated Poke soon finds that they actually overlap and he is drawn deeper into dark, unfamiliar terrain.