Excerpt from Bangkok Tattoo by John Burdett, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Bangkok Tattoo

By John Burdett

Bangkok Tattoo
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  • Hardcover: May 2005,
    320 pages.
    Paperback: Jul 2006,
    320 pages.

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" 'The farang had been drinking even before he came into my club. He called me over to join him at his table and offered to buy me a drink. I accepted a Coca-Cola while he drank'—ah, let's see—'nearly a full bottle of Mekong whiskey. He did not seem to be able to take alcohol very well and seemed confused and disoriented. When he offered to pay my bar fine and take me back to his hotel, I told him he was too drunk, but he insisted, and my papasan, one Sonchai Jitpleecheep, asked me as a special favor to go with the farang, who was very big and muscular and seemed likely to cause trouble if I didn't.' "

"Thanks," I say.

" 'He struck me as a man with many problems and talked rather abusively about women, especially American women, whom he called cunts. I think perhaps he had had a relationship that had gone badly wrong and that left him with very strong feelings of bitterness toward all women, even though he claimed to like Asian women, who he said were much kinder and gentler than farang women and more womanly. When we reached his room, I suggested to him that he was perhaps too drunk to make love and that it would be better if I went back to my club. I even offered to give him back my bar fine, but he grew angry and said he could fuck all night and pushed me into the room. He ordered me to undress, and I did so. I was now quite frightened because I had seen a large knife'—do we have the murder weapon?"

"A large knife, as a matter of fact—looks like a military thing, solid steel with about a twelve-inch blade. I left it in the hotel room for now."

" 'An enormous military-type weapon lying on a bedside table. He started to tell me what he would do to my body if I didn't gratify his desires. He stripped naked and threw me on the bed, but he seemed unable to get an erection. He started to masturbate to make himself big, then made me turn over onto my front. It was then I realized that he intended to sodomize me. I begged him not to because I never do that sort of thing, and his member now was so big I was sure he would injure me. Still he insisted, without using a condom or a lubricant, and the pain was so great I started to scream. He became very angry and grabbed a pillow to try to stifle my screams, whereupon I completely lost control of my mind because I was sure he would kill me. Luckily I was able to reach the knife, which I swung around behind me while he was still inside me. By chance I seem to have severed his penis. He went into shock at first and stood up, hardly able to believe what had happened. He kept staring at his penis, which was lying on the floor near the bed (it popped out of me and must have fallen off him when he stood up), then he let out a terrible bestial yell and jumped on top of me. I had turned over onto my back, and unfortunately I was still holding the knife in both hands in a vertical position, and it penetrated his lower abdomen when he landed. His struggles only made the wound bigger. I did what I could to save his life, but it took some time to push him off me because he was very heavy. I was too much in shock to call the police, until I realized he was dead and then it was too late. All I could do to show respect was to pick up his penis and put it on the bedside table. My dress and bra had been on the bed and were soaked in blood. I had to put them on before I could leave the room. When I got back to the bar, I stripped off my clothes and ran up to the comfort rooms, where I took a powerful tranquilizer and lost consciousness.

" 'This statement was taken by Police Colonel Vikorn and Detective Jitpleecheep of Royal Thai Police District 8 while I was in full possession of my faculties. It is true to the best of my knowledge and belief, in testimony of which I hereby set my right thumb print.' "

Excerpted from Bangkok Tattoo by John Burdett Copyright © 2005 by John Burdett. Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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