The Beach by Alex Garland is a hallucinogenic and suspenseful novel about twenty-something travelers in Thailand. This was a random pick for me. There were times I was going to set it aside but it did keep sucking me to find out what next. I give it a 4 of 5 stars!
The main character, Richard, spends his first night in a low-budget guest house. A fellow traveler slashes his wrists, bequeathing to Richard a meticulously drawn map to "the Beach."
The Beach, as Richard has come to learn, is the subject of a legend among young travelers in Asia: a lagoon hidden from the sea, with white sand and coral gardens, freshwater falls surrounded by jungle, plants untouched for a thousand years. There, it is rumored, a carefully selected international few have settled in a communal Eden.