Bangkok as it is deep down – Bamboo Grove by Romy Wood


  • Style – Unpredictable thriller with a few elements of a family saga
  • Beachy/Worthy – Slightly beachy, but an unsettling read at the same time
  • Ms Wood is based in England, but she seems to know her stuff – the parts that are set in Bangkok ring very true

Bamboo Grove is a peculiar book in many ways, with a bizarre medley of characters, but the way in which the plot progresses is somehow believable, due in no small part to its incredibly convincing portrayal of modern Bangkok.  As someone who has spent two years living in Bangkok, I really recognised every road and soi that the plot of this story twists down.  Whilst it is set partly in London, and a few other places, it’s very clear that the heart of this book is, and always will be, Bangkok.  I’m not sure what genre I would fit it into – it’s a fast-paced page-turner, and yet somehow not quite a thriller.  I really enjoyed how unpredictable many of the characters were, from a mother with mental health problems to a Buddhist monk who doesn’t quite see his duties in the standard light.  Recommended if you like reading something out of the ordinary, and if you want to read a book set in modern-day Bangkok that isn’t based around prisons or prostitutes.

If you want to buy Bamboo Grove, you can get it at

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