Palash Mitra, the protagonist of “Lost in Pattaya” by Kishore Modak, gives a first person narrative of his life after he lost his daughter. When holidaying with his wife, Fang Wei in Pattaya, he loses his pre-teen daughter, Li Ya, in the crowded streets.
Loss turns to grief turns to fear of her being caught in the brothels of Pattaya.
An alcoholic with a weakness for drugs, he is easily blamed for the loss which causes an already receding relationship with his wife to terminate.
At his nadir, he decides to quit his auditor job in the corporate world and go in search of Li Ya.
Move to Part 2, where Palash goes to the Pattaya brothels, pretending to be a client, encountering Thuy Binh, the pimp queen and her muse, Miho in the process.
Does he find Li Ya there?
Where does his search take him?
What are the deadly secrets that he finds during his search?
The rest of the story happens in the web of mafia that runs the sex trade of Thailand.
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- Parts 2,3 and 4 are racy and gripping. One can imagine the events almost as if they are taken straight out of an underworld movie.
- Interesting characterization of Thuy Binh and Miho. The story of their bonding is very well-founded.
- A very cinematic climax with all elements of an action thriller.
– – –
- Part 1, which is long and dull and slow-paced and bearing down with gloom.
- I seem to be reading a series of books with typos. This one too has a few irritants. In this modern world of digital writing and spell checkers, is it too difficult to keep typos off a book?
- There seems to be something wrong about the time frame. After losing Li Ya, who is described as pre-teen, and about two years after Palash moves to Pattaya, he meets her at Bangkok. At this point, she is described to be about 18 years.
- The language. There were instances when I read and re-read certain paragraphs multiple times, but could not understand what the author was trying to say.
. . .
- A very disturbing story. The first part, which is very slow-paced compensates for its pace by the gravity of the incident. Which parent would not feel a lump in the throat reading through the grief of a father’s loss of his daughter and the endless possibilities in a town where the prime trade is sex?
- It would make a good action movie.