My Thai Girl and I
“How I found a new life in Thailand.”
My new book, “My Thai Girl” and I”, which is distributed by Asia Books is now in all good book shops in Thailand
This is the story of how I met my wife, Cat and how we set up home together out in the rice fields in the North East of Thailand. I’d been working on the book for three years and am delighted that it’s now published.
The ‘New’ Novel
“The Exotic Adventures of a Literary Sexagenarian”
First published in 2004, ‘Thai Girl’ has appeared on Asia Books’ best seller list for books on Thailand (fiction and non-fiction), and has become ‘one of the biggest selling English language novels ever published in Thailand’.
It has been reprinted seven times, including a new edition published by Monsoon Books in Singapore for world wide distribution. (See the pastel cover design above.) A total of 18,000 copies of ‘Thai Girl’ are now in print.
Shortly after publication by Monsoon Books, ‘Thai Girl’ was listed second only to Dan Brown’s ‘Da Vinci Code’ on Singapore’s ‘Times Newslink’ bestseller list, outselling ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’, Wilbur Smith and other such slow selling stuff. At the end of May 2006, ‘Thai Girl’ was launched in the USA and on Amazon.
Big Blog Blag!
Please visit my blog, ‘The Exotic Adventures of a Literary Sexagenarian’. It has received over 70,000 hits and is all about my life in Isaan with Cat, including zany commentary on rural life, lady boys, the rough and tumble of politics and all things Thai.
If you have read MY THAI GIRL AND I and want to read more news of Andrew and Cat, you’ll find it on the blog.
Critical Acclaim for “Thai Girl”
“Thai Girl” is a story which has great passion for Thailand and its idiosyncrasies.
• METRO MAGAZINE.
Credited with opening a window on Thai culture and interactions between Thais and farang… “Thai Girl” has become one of the biggest-selling English language novels ever published in Thailand.
• Daniel Cooper, FARANG UNTAMED TRAVEL.
“Thai Girl” is in essence a travel novel that explores Thailand’s complex society through the eyes of young backpackers as they discover the delights of Bangkok, Koh Samet and Koh Chang, and it attempts to explain the cultural gap between East and West through the experiences of a young foreigner and his Thai girlfriend. The author’s powers of observation are remarkable. He writes so well and informatively about Thailand, its culture and the myriad aspects of society here, and for that reason alone, “Thai Girl” is well worth reading.
• THE BIG CHILLI.
Thai Girl is the definitive novel about relationships between Thais and foreigners.
• Harry Nicolaides, author of the novel, ‘Verisimilitude’.
When Fon, the ‘Thai girl’ appears, she takes over the novel and makes it fly. Pretty, sassy, coquettish, ambitious and iron-willed, Fon fairly leaps off the page, a living breathing character. Always there is the delightful Fon, lighting up Ben’s life and the novel itself. The highlight of the book is Ben’s trip with Fon to her ancestral village. The physical setting and the rhythms of life here are beautifully observed.
• James Eckardt, THE NATION.
“Thai Girl” opens doors on a world of cross-cultural complexity where misunderstandings abound. Its author is one of few writers who understand that in the Land of Smiles, nothing and no one is what they seem. I couldn’t put the book down.
• Stephen Leather, author of ‘Private Dancer’ and other best selling novels.
Hicks has done very well in his pen sketch of the Thai psyche of the Isaan girl, who can be open and closed, off-hand and standoffish all at the same time.
• Lang Reid, PATTAYA MAIL.
Congratulations on an excellent novel that captures the real essence of Thailand and the traditional Isaan woman. I found myself not far from tears for both Fon and Ben at their parting and the dilemma they both faced in not being able to be together.
• Andrew F., READERS FORUM on www.thaigirl2004.com.
Whenever I looked up from the pages of “Thai Girl”, I had to think for a few seconds to remember that I was not still in Thailand! I could not put the book down because it so well portrays and then offers explanations for, or perspectives on, the many customs and behaviours I have witnessed but not always understood whilst in Thailand.
• Allan, Switzerland, READERS FORUM on www.thaigirl2004.com.
“Thai Girl” explores Thailand, its culture and its people through the eyes of a western visitor, Ben, as he observes the Bangkok scene and confronts the issues affecting a nation in flux, rapidly industrializing and as it does so, leaving many of its traditional values behind. It also explores the nature of today’s young Thai women, many with their roots in rural poverty but with their eyes on the glitter of a sparkling consumer society. Pick up a copy and take a journey of your own through the heartlands of Thailand.
• FCCT BULLETIN. (The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand.)
This book seems to me to be really about educating the sex tourist. I think they should make you buy this book at Bangkok arrivals. It might make a few Westerners think twice before getting involved with the commercial sex scene.
• Jim, 5 June 2005, www.abajo.co.uk
I found you book highly readable and days after finishing it I’m still thinking about it. Please say you’re writing a sequel – I’d love to know what happens next. I thought your Thai characters were very well drawn and Fon certainly dispels many of the stereotypes.
• Caron Eastgate James, author of ‘The Occidentals’
Hicks addresses the age old question that crosses the mind of every single visitor to Thailand; in a white-guy-meets-Thai-girl relationship, who’s really holding the chips? When a tourist splits with his girlfriend on a holiday in Thailand, he finds himself enraptured by a charming-yet-mysterious local woman. The novel’s Thai heroine is a multilayered character, at times passive and helpless, at times wry and controlling.
What comes across as a couple wrapped up in mind games will get you thinking about power dynamics in general, and how gender, age, ethnic and economic differences all factor together. The endlessly complex characters will leave you guessing until the very end. Feminists may find this relationship hard to handle, men who date Thai women may find it instantly relatable. Regardless of your opinions on the falang/Thai romance phenomenon, Hicks’ honest dialogues and relatable themes makes this book an absorbing read.
• Anne Merrit, www.khaosanroad.com
A British backpacker falls for a reticent young masseuse on Koh Samet but struggles with age-old cross-cultural confusion in this sensitive attempt at a different kind of expat novel.
• ROUGH GUIDE TO THAILAND, October 2006
On the surface, this is a simple love story but it contains many interesting insights into Thai culture, foreigners traveling in Thailand and the points where they collide. As the romance plays out, issues such as poverty, migrant workers and the sex industry are explored. This is an excellent book for promoting discussion about some of these issues. It helps give a deeper insight into the real Thailand that many tourists never really see or understand.
Andrew Hicks really manages to give the reader a great insight into the mentality of the traditional Thai girl and how she tries to explain the differences in culture and attitudes to the naïve Ben. Perhaps my favourite part of the book is when Fon takes Ben to her home in Buriram province. This is when the author, with his experience of Isaan, manages to afford the reader a delightfully giddy adventure into the realities of every-day north eastern life. Written well, you can almost hear the quack quack of the village ducks.
• ‘Steve Suphan’ on www.thai-blogs.com
Your book has already entered the pantheon of ‘must read’ books for expats moving here and for backpackers staying on longer than they’d planned. Also for expats going on home leave who want to give folks back home a fictional taste of life here. Well done!
• Lyle Walter, the ‘Bangkok expat mama’ on www.lylesinrodwalter.blogs.com
“Thai Girl” by Andrew Hicks describes the encounter of a British guy with Thai culture and a Thai girl he inevitably falls in love with, as well as the cultural differences he faces.
• www.wcnvienna.org, Women’s Career Network, Vienna, Network News, April 2007, a report about visiting Thailand which recommends “Thai Girl” as the one book that visitors should read.
Brings back a lot of memories of when I was in Thaland. Great love story. I couldn’t put it down and finished the book in two days.
• Comment by Martial Arts Maniac on www.amazon.com