The Praeknamdang Collection


An Introduction the world of Saneh Sangsuk.

This package includes two books set in the village of Praeknamdang in the Thai jungle.

Written by the award-winning Thai author Saneh Sangsuk and translated by Mui Poopoksakul, they are published in the UK for the first time in 2023.

Save 15% when you buy both books together.


The village of Praeknamdang, nestled in the Thai jungle, has fallen under the spell of Song Waad, the self-proclaimed medium of The Sacred Mother. Living in fear of his connection to the Patron goddess, the villagers offer up land and wealth to the religious leader, who grows more corrupt by the day. Only one family dares to resist his growing power: a couple and their talented ten-year-old sonOne day, while out with his friends, the boy is attacked by a cobra. He becomes locked in a life-and-death struggle in which the border between the human and the animal disintegrates. Did the boy simply stray too near to a burrow, or is The Sacred Mother punishing him? A gripping existential parable, Venom introduces the UK reader to the world of Sangsuk; lush, raw, lyrical and vivid, this is storytelling at its finest.

96pp, paperback with flaps
ISBN 978-1-908670-79-3
Publication date: 8 May 2023

The Understory

Luang Paw Tien, the abbot of Praeknamdang Temple, is ninety-three years old and a treasure trove of stories. Most nights he entertains the children of his village with tales from his long and extraordinary life: of his childhood in a previous century, of his fifteen year pilgrimage to India and back, and of the plenitude and majesty of the jungle, in a time when it was rich with elephants, peacocks and turtles. But what the children want to hear most of all are tales of the tiger, a creature which has marked the abbots life more deeply and terribly than any other. The Understory is a novel about storytelling, a changing world and the fearsome power of nature.

240pp, paperback with flaps, £12.99
ISBN 978-1-908670-81-6
Publication date: 26 October 2023

Press & Reviews

‘A vivid fable of power and resistance, this story will continue to resonate long after the last page has been read.’ - Jessie Greengrass, author of The High House and Sight

'A gripping, sensual parable, seamlessly translated by Mui Poopoksakul.' - Catherine Taylor, The Irish Times

‘A perfect blend of sharply observed naturalism and subtle allegory – Venom will delight and intrigue its new readers and find an enduring place in world literature.’ - John Gray, author of Feline Philosophy: Cats and the Meaning of Life and False Dawn: the Delusions of Global Capitalism

About The Book


Saneh Sangsuk (b. 1957) is an award-winning Thai author, known locally by his pen name Dan-arun Saengthong. He is regarded in Thailand as one of the greatest writers of his generation, having written multiple acclaimed novels and story collections. He is a highly prolific literary translator, working under different pen names, and counts Ernest Hemingway, Edgar Allan Poe, Oscar Wilde, Franz Kafka, Gabriel García Márquez and Knut Hamsun among the numerous authors he has translated. In 2014, he won Thailand’s coveted SEA Write Award for Venom and Other Stories (Asorraphit), a collection that includes some of his best-known stories. In 2018, the Thai government awarded him the title of National Artist for his contributions to the country’s literature, and he has also been named a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government. Sangsuk lives in Phetchaburi, in a small village similar to the fictional Praeknamdang, where many of his tales are set.


Mui Poopoksakul is a lawyer turned translator. Her book-length translations include works by contemporary Thai authors Prabda Yoon and Duanwad Pimwana. For her translation of Sangsuk’s The Understory, she was awarded a PEN/Heim Translation Fund grant. Mui lives in Berlin, Germany.