Making the news recently has been the conclusions regarding a 2009 discovery in the Tam Pa Ling (Cave of the Monkeys) in Laos by paleoanthropologists who unearthed skull bones and teeth belonging to a modern human.
The remains are believed to be earliest fossil evidence of Homo sapiens in mainland Southeast Asia. They date back to 46,000 to 63,000 years ago according to a report in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The remains include a partial skull, jaw fragments and teeth.
Once again, more reasons why books set in Laos could be some incredibly fascinating stories if writers took it seriously and committed more resources to understanding our roots and heritage there. It's certainly not the end-all-be-all but it is interwoven with the rest of the human saga.