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Extended Audio Sample Bangkok 8: A Novel Audiobook, by John Burdett Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.81 out of 53.81 out of 53.81 out of 53.81 out of 53.81 out of 5 3.81 (37 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Burdett Narrator: B. D. Wong Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Sonchai Jitpleecheep Mysteries Release Date: June 2003 ISBN: 9780739303887
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Electrifying, darkly comic, razor-edged—a thriller unlike any other.

Under a Bangkok bridge, inside a bolted-shut Mercedes: a murder by snake—a charismatic African American Marine sergeant killed by a methamphetamine-stoked python and a swarm of stoned cobras.

Two cops—the only two in the city not on the take—arrive too late. Minutes later, only one is alive: Sonchai Jitpleecheep—a devout Buddhist, equally versed in the sacred and the profane—son of a long-gone Vietnam War G.I. and a Thai bar girl whose subsequent international clientele contributed richly to Sonchai’s sophistication.

Now, his partner dead, Sonchai is doubly compelled to find the murderer, to maneuver through the world he knows all to well—illicit drugs, prostitution, infinite corruption—and into a realm he has never before encountered: the moneyed underbelly of the city, where desire rules and the human body is no less custom-designable than a raw hunk of jade. And where Sonchai tracks the killer—and a predator of an even more sinister variety.

Thick with the authentic—and hallucinogenic—atmosphere of Bangkok, crowded with astonishing characters, uniquely smart and skeptical, literary and wildly readable, Bangkok 8 is one of a kind.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • A stunning thriller! Bangkok 8 is suspense at its best: a masterfully written tale set in a world that's perfectly evoked and populated with compelling, flesh-and-blood characters. Jeffery Deaver, author of The Vanished Man and The Stone Monkey

    "Bangkok 8 is one of the most startling and provocative mysteries that I've read in years. The characters are marvelously unique, the setting is intoxicating and the plot unwinds in dark illusory strands, reminiscent of Gorky Park. Once I started, I didn't want to put it down.
  • The wildest ride in modern crime novel exoticum. A novel so steeped in milieu that it feels as if you’ve blasted to mars in the grip of a demon who won’t let you go. Read this book, savor the language–it’s the last–and the most compelling word in thrillers. James Ellroy

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robert | 2/19/2014

    " Oddly tame really considering what the subject matter is, there are some disturbing parts but mostly, just an interesting crime book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Will Lee | 2/18/2014

    " This book was a mix of Carl Hiaason and Dan Brown. Very entertaining though does not not paint a good picture of Thailand. It was interesting to see a Westerner try to write from a native's point of view. A couple of slip ups but a decent read. I didn't get a "happy ending" vibe...haha. my puns are stupid "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Anne | 2/3/2014

    " I liked it for location and was a fun read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Anne | 1/29/2014

    " For a beach read this was too confusing! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Megbarstow | 1/29/2014

    " I loved this book. Great view of west vs east and Thai society. And really hilarious lines and characters. Great read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Martha | 1/27/2014

    " Besides being a great murder mystery, this book opened my eyes to the culture of Thailand and gave a lot of insight into Buddhism. I ended this story with the decision to include a visit to Thailand before I die. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shawn | 1/18/2014

    " Great read when you need to turn the brain off and get lost for a bit. Similar to a fast food movie on a hung over sunday morning. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katherine | 1/17/2014

    " i'm not sure how i ended up on a thriller kick but here i am and i like it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sjoreel | 1/16/2014

    " A good mystery, and an interesting take on Thai culture. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Roseann | 1/15/2014

    " Gritty and fabulous....if you don't mind a lot of talk about corruption & prostitution & sex... Hmmm Sounds almost like America these days! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott Jaszlics | 1/3/2014

    " A good thriller though the eyes of a bangkok detective that I found hard to put down. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lynn Hankin | 12/26/2013

    " Must read for anyone who plans to visit Thailand and wants to know how the Thais think and act culturally. Main character is a detective who's mother is a former prostitute,now a madam. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mandy Peoples | 12/21/2013

    " The first in the series. Great fun mystery reads - this series is like tasty food you can't stop eating. And I love learning a little bit about the culture with each book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wren | 12/19/2013

    " Oh dear this is a lurid one. Set in the Thai sex trade, but the narrater is above it all so the reader gets to be, too. Better written than I had any right to expect, but still a guilty pleasure. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Neill Hancock | 12/7/2013

    " this is a super read and you learn a lot about Buddism "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy Jo | 11/13/2013

    " Hmm, I don't know that i would recommend this book to anyone. It was strangely interesting...and a bit bizarre. There was some interesting comments on Buddism, the Thai prostution lifestyle, and Thai drug culture. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michael | 11/11/2013

    " Satisfying ending, but tried a bit too hard to be titillating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eric_W | 10/27/2013

    " Hard to classify this one, part mystery, part police procedural, part underground travelogue. Good wild ride. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 David Green | 6/12/2013

    " Fantastic read, fast, fun and enlightening about the seedy side of Thailand "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julie Gay | 4/18/2013

    " Merder Mystery set in Thailand. The book gives interesting insight into the Thai mindset as compared to western thought. Challenges the norm. A quick read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Beata Bowen | 4/12/2013

    " Culture shock therapy! Top notch plot, superb writing technique, complex, unforgettable characters, dazzling setting. I'm running out of praise adjectives here.... Plus, this book just might have the best ending in modern literature. Seriously. Read it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gabi Coatsworth | 7/3/2012

    " Loved this mystery novel with a Buddhist detective and a slightly spiritual tone. Bangkok beautifully drawn and the plot was good, too. Looking forward to reading more. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mike | 5/9/2012

    " I suddenly remembered this book. I only read it a few years ago, but I can only just barely remember the plot. It kept me turning the pages until the end, but that's about it, I guess, so it gets 2 stars. Can't say anything anything good or bad about it, especially. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rajit | 2/18/2012

    " Made more sense out of Buddhism and Thailand than anything else I've read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marty Ross | 2/12/2012

    " This book was a lot of fun, a lot of twists and turns. I read it a few years ago, and now I'm reading the sequel to it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dan Bentley-Baker | 1/29/2012

    " An entertainment for friends of all things Thai. An OK police mystery. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katie | 12/26/2011

    " 3.5 stars. I don't really care for books in this genre, but this one was well-written and interesting. Even after all of the icky sex trade in this book it still made me want to visit Thailand. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sandra | 12/25/2011

    " comfortable to hold even in a newer smaller aeroplane seat near the bathroom. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robert | 5/15/2011

    " Fun mystery with an interesting twist "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nikhil | 5/12/2011

    " Interesting story of a Buddhist detective trying to solve a murder mystery equipped with his fuzzy Asian morality. Nothing deep, but not too frivolous either. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 1030noseride | 4/7/2011

    " You're either a fan of Thai prostitutes and that whole scene, or you're not. But if you're a Raymond Chandler fan, well, you'll just put this down and reread one of his. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wez Hind | 3/28/2011

    " This is a great book. If you like thrillers/mysteries with a bit of depth then this is for you. The central character is also written so beautifully, that you will find yourself accompanying them not only through the city, but also immersing yourself in the culture. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rick | 3/19/2011

    " This was an enjoyable read with some interesting characters. Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep is not your average cop amongst his peers where coruption runs rampant. This was an awakening as to some of the Thai culture that seems to clash with us westerners. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kariss | 3/13/2011

    " Thank you Wenona ... another great series "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill | 2/22/2011

    " This was a fun romp into a new and very different world. Lots of intrigue and plot twists. It was a very enjoyable experience, one I was sorry to see end. Thank you, John! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sandra aka Sleo | 1/31/2011

    " 3.75 stars. Hilarious in spots. The ending a little weak. Very entertaining and exotic. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cindy | 1/30/2011

    " This noir detective story set in Bangkok took me to a far away place and messed with my head with its touches of magical realism. It was fun and surprising - even though the ending was weird and goofy. The narrator was fine, though a bit strained on the female parts. "

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About the Author
Author John BurdettJohn Burdett is the author of A Personal History of Thirst, The Last Six Million Seconds, Bangkok 8, and Bangkok Tattoo.
About the Narrator

B.D. Wong was born and raised in San Francisco, California. He made his Broadway debut in M. Butterfly. He is the only actor to be honored with the Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Clarence Derwent Award, and Theater World Award for the same performance. He starred in the television series All-American Girl, and has made guest appearances on Sesame Street and The X-Files.