Thailand Footprint: The People, Things, Literature, and Music of Thailand and the Region

Kicking DogsLarge

This comic crime fiction novel, set in Bangkok, has a hilarious beginning, which includes an unexpected swim in the Chao Phraya river, an ending that had me guessing wrong on a major “who done it” plot point and a middle chock-full of Thai cultural nuances that any expat living in Thailand will find useful today. KICKING DOGS is unlike any Bangkok based book which I have read and I have read a lot. Colorful characters, insightful prose and laugh out loud moments. My only critique is that the protagonist is a journalist, which is never my favorite choice and the book reads at times like a journal – heavy on narrative and light on dialogue. I prefer a balance – you may not care. Set in the boom times of the pre-economic crisis Thailand of the 1990’s, the story-line holds up well today.

It’s a bit of an odd couple story, with Jack the journalist and the City of Bangkok trying to figure out how to live with each other. Hot headed Jack having the tougher time making the needed adjustments.

The journey takes you up close and personal into the lives of two-bit hustlers and crooks who may have a second job working the third-shift as a bargain basement assassin. Also featured is your better than average despicable heavyweight champ of a villain, who goes by the name of Fat Fat. An intriguing, often comic look into the underbelly world of Thailand, where rank has its privilege and if you have no ranking you haven’t got much. Lessons to be learned are plentiful, the one that springs to mind is: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” A first-time read for me of author Collin Piprell. I would definitely seek out others. A fun, quick read at 240 pages.
Visit Collin Piprell, a man for the age at his excellent and entertaining website

Collin, who has also written under the pseudonym Ham Fiske, has written a number of other books including:

Yawn (a thriller) 2000
Bangkok Old Hand (1993, a collection of non-fiction essays)
Diving in Thailand (1993)
National Parks of Thailand (1991)
Thailand’s Coral Reefs (1993)
Thailand: The Kingdom Beneath the Sea (1991)

Collin has a futuristic novel completed. Look for publishing updates here and at his website.

12 Responses to “KICKING DOGS by author Collin Piprell – A Book Review”

  1. Steve Rosse

    “Kicking Dogs” is one of my favorite books. Collin Pipprell essentially taught me how to write.

    • collinx

      Your review is much appreciated. A question, if I may. You’ve read Bangkok Knights, it seems. Do you think it has enough life for another edition? Or would readers find it dated in some ways?

      • scholes346

        Thanks Collin and it was a pleasure. My 16 year old daughter even put aside her Breaking Dawn and Twilight vampire novels to read your story in Bangkok Noir. She said I like this Dad, he’s good. I said give my book back. Otherwise your books disappear and are never seen again. As for Bangkok Knights I definitely think that it could roll again. There were some great characters in the book and I am sure you would bring it up to date if and where needed. What I will do is read Bangkok Knights again and then talk about it on my blog. I have been wanting to re-read and talk about some of the stuff on my book shelves for a while. I will make this the first project. After I will answer the question in a more comprehensive manner. Thanks Collin.

  2. Kevin Cummings

    Well done, Trevor. I’ve taken a stab at reviewing a couple of anthologies and found them to be more difficult than your standard novel. I had Collin’s HOT ENOUGH TO KILL in my Top Four in Bangkok Noir. Feel free to leave a comment with a link to any of your reviews or posts any time. You are most welcome here, as are you, Mr. Rosse. Cheers.

    • scholes346

      Cheers Kevin and much appreciated. I must admit to being a bit of a short-story fan and especially enjoyed the diversity of the stories. in Bangkok Noir. I agree with you totally about Collin’s HOT ENOUGH TO KILL being in the top Four. I thought it was excellent. I know it’s the Collin Piprel mutual appreciation society here, but I am a massive fan of his writing style. I am enjoying the blog by the way Kevin and all the best.

  3. collinx

    Many thanks to Steve and Trevor. People are liable to think you guys are pen-names I’ve adopted for the purposes of writing my own blurbs.

    • Kevin Cummings

      There is only one Collin Piprell. While it is too late to have him teach me how to write, I am hopeful he might share his secrets for making a credible red wine in plastic garbage bins. It’s never too late to learn the important things in life …

      • collinx

        I was being modest. It was a damned good red wine. (At least in the circumstances.)

    • Steve Rosse

      Please, Collin, I did what you told me to do. Now release my children. Mandy needs her medicine.


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