Bangkok Boy Bar – a review

Bangkok Bar Boy by Richard Vohl is well written which is perhaps a little unusual for its genre. It put me in mind of Gaysia by Benjamin Law. At times the story is incredibly detailed, perhaps too much so in some areas. The book starts with a brief prologue set in Bangkok but this is followed by a long and occasionally tedious section about the author’s life as a gay man in Middle America and Los Angeles. This early part of the story becomes more interesting when the author meets Tien, a Vietnamese boy who has immigrated to live in the States. Although the writer and Tien come to love each other theirs is not a sexual relationship. They come to regard each other as ‘family.’ The family is later joined by Al, a male nurse who has come from the Philippines. Al is straight and is married (to a woman).

Eventually the author who works as a software designer decides to go on a trip to Bangkok to sample the gay life there. Again there is a lot of detail and I feel that we didn’t really need a moment-by-moment description of our story-teller’s journey on a commercial airliner.

The author books a room at the Babylon gay resort which has the biggest sauna in Thailand (and perhaps the world). Here we come to the most moving part of the story. The author ventures out to explore Bangkok’s boy bars and eventually ends up hiring a young man, Kirt, to go back to his room for sex. The American visitor and the boy become genuinely fond of each other and after several days (and nights) Richard Vohl believes that they genuinely love each other. However he faces a dilemma; if they are really in love how can he keep on paying the boy for sex? On his part young Kirt cannot conceive of giving up work.

Towards the end of his trip Richard falls in love with another boy called Golf and this time we feel they might have more of a future. When the author returns to the States Golf gives up his sex work and gets ‘legit’ work and there is a strong suggestion that he will share the author’s life.

Despite the fact that everyone who stays at Babylon receives a free day pass to the adjoining gay sauna our author only visits this facility briefly – and that’s to take a shower. There’s a hint that he disapproves of the action that goes on in gay saunas but he obviously doesn’t have any qualms about hiring boys out of bars for sex. Puzzling.

Unusually for this kind of books perhaps, the text has many photographs. The author tells us they have been taken on his cell phone and they look like it. At least a third of them are not of sufficient quality to be published. However, all on all, I feel that Bangkok Bar Boy can be recommended.

  • Reviewed by Alistair Young

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BRILLIANT BOYS: Jody and Michel

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To my Dear Followers,
My book BRILLIANT BOYS: Jody and Michel will be available for free downloading from Amazon Kindle from the 9th of October until the 11th. Here is an excerpt. I hope you enjoy reading it,

Kev

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If I do go to university in a year or two I may move into student accommodation. I was given an e-reader by the folks last Christmas and of course I’ve down loaded a lot of gay stories. Sometimes you can get them for free or borrow them. Even if you have to pay for them there are heaps of great stories that would cost you less than a cup of coffee. I’ve noticed that out there in the ether there are probably thousands of stories about gay boys attending American colleges. It seems to be a real fashion at the moment. Well many of these guys live in residential colleges and, of course, each one of them has a roommate. Or a “roomie” as they often say in the States. Well, it doesn’t matter if both boys are gay or if one of them is a screaming little twink and the other is a jock – or maybe they are both straight, you know that by the end of the story they’ll be fucking each other. I even read one story about how a college boy is given some sort of horrendous drug by a girl at a party and when he wakes up his cock has been replaced by a wet cunt. Of course his straight mates spend the rest of the story fucking his new pussy. The more I read these tales about tails the more I’m tempted to move into student accommodation when the time comes.

Now I don’t want you to think that I don’t have a boyfriend because I do. His name is Michel and he lives on his own in a squalid little room in a boarding house at Kings Cross. I adore the name ‘Michel’, it’s much sexier than our own “Michael’ which always conjures up an image for me of a boy with pimples and horn-rimmed glasses.

Michel is from the French speaking part of Belgium and he’s a poet. He’s very beautiful, with luminous green eyes, a nicely ragged blond haircut and a complexion you could die for. I think it was his beauty as well as his poetry that helped him get a double spread feature in The Australian. The publicity got him requests to do poetry readings around the town and just the other week I went to see him perform at the Wayside Chapel which is situated in Kings Cross. I could see there were lots of girls in the audience swooning over him and a couple of boys were a bit hot and bothered as well.

Michel is a kind of a refugee… he’s very bright and this would have helped him get chosen for the immigration programme although he probably didn’t let on to the officials that he wanted to be a poet.

Not long after we first met over coffee at the Wayside Chapel he told me he was straight – he probably told me that because he’d tumbled to my sexual orientation. Well most of the time you don’t have to be a Nobel Prize Laureate to work that out. But then I started to wonder about Michel when he told me that he had to have his cock and balls examined as part of the immigration process. He also told me that it was a requirement for acceptance into the programme that boys and young men had to be cut. Now this puzzled me somewhat because I knew that, although many boys are circumcised in Australia, others are intact. In fact from my own experience I would have said that a clear majority these days are uncut. However an academic researcher would probably say that my ‘sample’ was not big enough for me to make an accurate judgement. I could wish! Hah! I once shocked a friend of mine by telling him after I’d had a few too many drinks at a party that I had a target: I wanted to suck a thousand cocks off before my twenty fifth birthday. The other reason that I was slightly surprised by Michel’s revelation about his cock was that I had assumed that most Euro boys were uncut. Certainly just about all the British boys I’d been with were intact. Of course Muslim guys from Europe are another matter.

Michel was obviously very proud of his cock. He was pleased that his parents had had him cut not long after he was born otherwise he would have needed to have it done before embarking for the Land Down Under. He imagined that it could have been a fairly traumatic experience for a nineteen year old. Michel told me that his cock head was very smooth and you couldn’t really see any veins on the shaft. I was tempted to ask him to give me a look but then I remembered that we were in the coffee shop at the Wayside Chapel and it wouldn’t have seemed appropriate somehow. However my heart skipped a beat when Michel invited me back to his room.

I’ve always loved Kings Cross. Of course it’s the sinful heart of Sydney and these days you have to look out for yourself. A friend of mine was recently mugged by an out of it guy in broad daylight who threatened to inject him with AIDS if he didn’t hand over his money. The boisterous bars are always buzzing and the night clubs roar on far into the night. There’s a gentler side to the Cross as well. Older people will tell you that in the nineteen fifties it was like a quaint bohemian village with bearded philosophers and artists playing chess in the cafes. Even today there are artists who offer their work on the sidewalks.

As you weave your way through the congested, blaring streets, every now and then visions will open up before your eyes of the great city business towers in the distance, the multi-sailed opera house or sparkling vistas of the harbour. And of course – looming over everything, the Sydney Harbour Bridge. As we threaded our way through the Cross we passed groups of hookers; these were the more desperate ones who offer their wares in broad daylight. Most of them knew me by sight and had probably given up on me but as we trundled along one or two of them gave Michel their pitch. He didn’t even look at them and it crossed my mind to wonder why this gorgeous creature didn’t have a girlfriend.