Book Review: The Fiction Thai by Tran Pham Ngan
Fiction Thai is a unique blend of fiction and non-fiction that will challenge you more than any other books in its genre. The author, Trinidhwan Rattanakorn, has managed to weave together some amazing events, both historic and mythical. He takes us back in time to ancient Thailand, brings us into the realm of the Royal family, and takes us into the world of the Bangkok underworld. All of these are combined into a comprehensive story that not only entertains but also enlightens and educates. It is not just an exciting story, but one that provide insight into the Thai culture and society as well.
This is the second book in the Legend of Hero Thao. In the first book, The Pirate’s Apprentice, we were introduced to Thao. While this story was great, it left a lot to be desired. In this book, the story is told from the point of view of a young woman who becomes a pirate herself and a true adventurer.
Fiction Thai has brought me back to the days when I was still a kid. In fact, even as an adult, I find the stories very enjoyable. That is not to say that I don’t enjoy reading fictional works, such as A Wrinkle in Time or The DaVinci Code. But, when it comes to fiction in the Thai language, I am always blown away by the quality of the writing. Reading Thai fiction is almost like having an adventure in a foreign language. The language is so simple to understand, it takes you by complete surprise.
So what makes this series so special? The main character is a Thai princess named Sukothai. It is she who is the main protagonist and a major character in the Legend of Hero Thao. What I really like about Sukothai is how much she is unlike any of the other women in Thai literature. Her beauty, intelligence, and strength are never described in the same way nor do her relationships with her friends and enemies stand out like they should.
In one scene, she is so upset because her tutor has been killed. She has to run away from home to get help from a fisherman who rescues her. The fisherman, however, wants to help her but she refuses him. He then decides to leave town, telling her that he can’t stay with her because her father will be angry with them for leaving. I cannot tell you the look on Sukothai’s face as she decides to leave. It is classic, unique, and very sad.
Another great aspect of the book is the descriptions of Sukothai’s homeland. It is described as an ancient place with a warm tropical climate. The scenery is very appealing as well. There are many buildings and architecture that stand out to anyone who has read books about Thailand. They blend into the background so that there is little confusion about where the different regions of Thailand are located. It is a very easy read, and that is why it is so popular with tourists.
When you have finished reading the novel, you will be wondering what more of Sukothai to do. You can explore her father’s island and surrounding area. You might even want to take a scuba diving trip. There are over a dozen wrecks there, and hundreds of islands to explore. It is perfect for families, because you can spend time together.
If you enjoy books about travel, then you will enjoy The Fiction Thai. It is very informative and interesting, while at the same time full of adventure and fun. You don’t have to worry about it being unrealistic because of the author’s own experience