B2S Book Club July Pick: A Prayer Before Dawn

It’s our monthly B2S Book Club, where we discuss a recent film adaptation and the book it’s based on! The club is run with fellow blogger Tom Out.

The book/film pick for July will be A Prayer Before Dawn by Billy Moore (Maverick House, 2014). We will meet at the Southbank Centre by the Central Bar on August 9th at 7pm. Unfortunately, due to previous travel obligations, we have to wait to meet till the beginning of August to meet! (Which means two books for August! We’ll also meet on the 28th!)

For those not in London please feel free to discuss the book/film below and we will post a recording of the group to post!


Billy Moore travelled to Thailand to escape a life of drug addiction and alcoholism. He managed to overcome his inner demons for a time but relapsed after trying ya ba – a highly-addictive form of methamphetamine. Moore’s life quickly descended into chaos, drug dealing and violence in Thailand until he was eventually arrested and imprisoned in Klong Prem, a place where life has no value. A Prayer Before Dawn: A Nightmare in Thailand is no ordinary prison memoir; it’s the story of one man’s struggle to survive in one of the world’s toughest prisons.

It stars Joe Cole (Peaky Blinders, Green Room, Black Mirror) as Billy Moore, with Vithaya Pansringarm, Panya Yimmumphai and Nicolas Shake. Joe Cole replaced the originally cast lead of Charlie Hunnam. Joe Cole trained with author Billy Moore on his Muay Thai sequences.

It was adapted Jonathan Hirschbein and Nick Saltrese. Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire directed the film, he is known for his film Johnny Mad Dog. It is produced by Senorita Films, Symbolic Exchange, Meridian Entertainment, in association with Indochina Productions, HanWay Films, and with participation by Canal+ and Ciné+.

We always encourage you to support your local independent bookseller in purchasing the book and independent cinemas in your viewing!

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Last month we discussed On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan. We found the tension built Florence and Edward in their inability to communicate thrilling with McEwan’s forensic focus on the characters minute movements. In the film, this was lost with the clumsy segways between past and present, and the ‘over-communication’ between characters.

Here is the audio for our discussion about the book and film. Apologies for the background noise, somehow we ended up in the midst of a party!

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