Book Review
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Book Review

Book Review: by Lang Reid

How to Make a Living in Paradise

Philip Wylie, the author of How to Establish a Successful Business in Thailand, has taken the concept one stage further with his May 2010 release of “How to Make a Living in Paradise” (ISBN 978-616-90336-1-5, Fast Track Publishing, Thailand).

Why should one wish to leave one’s own country and culture to live in what will always be alien cultures in SE Asia? By page 12 Philip Wylie spells it out in a brief paragraph head “Quality of Life”. And before you imagine that this just specifically refers to Thailand, he writes “The guidance in this book applies to wherever you call paradise.” The directory towards the back of the book covers 11 countries in the SE Asian group, so pick your own paradise, gentle reader.

Quite early in the book, the reader is exhorted to be careful and not rush into business ‘investments’. “The idea of having your own bar as a “hobby” business may seem exciting, but many part-time businesses fail.” And even more of a trap, “Another common mistake is rushing into marriage, buying property and registering it in their spouse’s name, and later losing both spouse and property.” Author Wylie must have been reading some of the correspondents to our Hillary column!

The chapter headings alone show the depth of this book, ranging from the Preparation, Keys to Survival, Buying an independent business, Buying a Franchise, Working Freelance, Alternative Approaches and then Popular Ways to Earn a Living, which includes writing and publishing (and did indeed give me some ideas for my own literary based business).

I am sure I am not the only person who just has a hazy idea of how the price for a business is actually calculated. That makes me the prime candidate to be ripped off by some smart talking sales person. This is where this book is excellent, providing a business evaluation checklist, which covers much more than a presumed profit and loss account. A beauty salon which, on paper, generates $7,530 profit each year is demonstrated to be actually a very poor investment. A salutary lesson.

There is a wealth of data in this book, and the majority of the suggestions are well founded on fact. Many of the money-making ideas as put forward by Wylie, would probably not be enough to totally fund your lifestyle in your particular paradise, but could be more of a supplemental income generator, and who wouldn’t like a little extra each month?

The RRP of How to Make a Living in Paradise is given as B. 495, and it is available through many book outlets including Asia Books, Kinokunia, Gecko Books and White Lotus, as well as through Amazon dot com or fasttrackpublishing dot com, and at B. 495 it is a very cheap investment in your new life.

Finally, a small niggle – the prices are given in US$, which is understandable, looking at the various paradises there are, but as the majority of the book and cases studies refer to Thailand, I would have liked some prices in baht (in brackets) as well. Perhaps next print run?