Reviewing King Bhumibol’s life

Andrew MacGregor Marshall — the ex-Reuters journalist famous for his comprehensive analysis of leaked US government cables — has just written a 9988 word review of King Bhumibol Adulyadej: A Life’s Work. And apparently he is only warming up: the piece is marked “to be continued”.

He begins with the statement that “Thailand is a kingdom in crisis, skidding towards catastrophe”. A bunch of people get quoted at length, including Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Duncan McCargo, Junya Lek Yimprasert, Nick Nostitz, Kasian Tejapira, and me. And its only after thousands of words that he really gets down to the book in question.

Nonetheless if you want a thorough and critical overview of Thai palace politics, summarising much of the recent scholarship and analysis, then this is a good place to start. And the bulk of the review will, I expect, follow in the next instalment.

Here on New Mandala, and as part of our NM-TLC book review series, we will be publishing a shorter review of King Bhumibol Adulyadej: A Life’s Work on Monday. Not wanting to give too much away, all I will say at this stage is that it has been put together by a very well-qualified reviewer.