Pack & Bring – October 2013

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As usual, here are our monthly good read picks for your beach vacation and essential travel gear which includes Nikon’s advanced waterproof camera perfect for scuba diving pictures and LG G2 smartphone.

Beach Reads

An Officer and A Spy
an-officer-and-a-spyBy Robert Harris
Synopsis: From the bestselling author of “Fatherland,” this is a gripping historical thriller in which the hunter becomes the hunted. January 1895. On a freezing morning in the heart of Paris, an army officer, Georges Picquart, witnesses a convicted spy, Captain Alfred Dreyfus, being publicly humiliated in front of twenty thousand spectators baying ‘Death to the Jew!’ The officer is rewarded with promotion: Picquart is made the French army’s youngest colonel and put in command of ‘the Statistical Section’ – the shadowy intelligence unit that tracked down Dreyfus. The spy, meanwhile, is given a punishment of medieval cruelty: Dreyfus is shipped off to a lifetime of solitary confinement on Devil’s Island – unable to speak to anyone, not even his guards, his case seems closed forever. But gradually Picquart comes to believe there is something rotten at the heart of the Statistical Section. When he discovers another German spy operating on French soil, his superiors are oddly reluctant to pursue it. Despite official warnings, Picquart persists, and soon the officer and the spy are in the same predicament…Narrated by Picquart, An Officer and a Spy is a compelling recreation of a scandal that became the most famous miscarriage of justice in history. Compelling, too, are the echoes for our modern world: an intelligence agency gone rogue, justice corrupted in the name of national security, a newspaper witch-hunt of a persecuted minority, and the age-old instinct of those in power to cover-up their crimes.
Price: Bt595 // Available in Asia Books
Mucha: Masterworks
masterworksPublished by Flame Tree
Synopsis: Though very much an individual and spiritual artist, Alfonse Mucha was a defining figure of the Art Nouveau era and is loved for his distinctive lush style and images of beautiful women in arabesque poses among the plethora of paintings, posters, advertisements and designs he produced. Admire a whole range of his work here in its full glory with succinct accompanying text.
Price: Bt450 //Available in Asia Books
Kinfolk Volume 8
kinfolkBy Kinfolk
Synopsis: Volume 8 is a glimpse of Japan through the Kinfolk lens, an ode to a country and culture we admire. This special Japan issue focuses on its traditions and fun things to do (origami flowers, hand-dyed indigo, ikebana); delicious indigenous snacks (ramen, cherry blossom macaroons, mochi, pickled cabbage); the harvest process behind green tea, wasabi and seaweed, along with interviews with some of the country’s finest makers and artisans who live and work in the country and abroad, with the usual focus on laid-back entertaining and great ideas for gatherings.
Price: Bt550 // Available in Asia Books
The Last Man
the-last-manBy Vince Flynn
Synopsis:
A hero can’t always be good …Joe Rickman, head of clandestine operations in the Middle East, has been kidnapped, and with him top secret CIA information that could prove disastrous in the wrong hands. Mitch Rapp must find Rickman at all costs. But something doesn’t add up and he soon suspects something even more sinister is afoot. With elements inside his own government working against him, Rapp will have to make to make a tough call between playing the hero and playing nice. Or will he be stopped dead before he can succeed?
Price: Bt325 // Available in Asia Books

Travel Gear

Digi-Cams for Underwear Adventures
AW1_10_BK_front_resizeScuba diving in Thailand is always a great experience, and we all want to record those moments when we are enjoying ourselves underwater. This is not easily done unless we’re a professional photographer because most of us are not sure if it’s safe to carry a camera during underwater expeditions. Until now – with the release of the Nikon AW1, a new series of Nikon 1 advanced camera with interchangeable lenses, is waterproof, and can withstand the shock of a fall.

Nikon 1 AW1 is compact enough to take everywhere and supports the world’s fastest high-speed continuous shooting rate of approximately 15fps with AF tracking and high-speed continuous shooting of full-resolution images at approximately 60fps when focus is locked. It is also waterproof up to a depth of 15m and can withstand the shock of a fall from a height of up to 2m.

Featuring a stylish and elegant design that is fit for a day out in town, it also supports a variety of 1 NIKKOR lenses as well as F-mount NIKKOR lenses (Mount Adapter FT1 required). When paired with the dedicated 1 NIKKOR AW 10mm f/2.8 or 1 NIKKOR AW 11-27.5mm f/3.5-5.6 lenses—the world’s first waterproof and shockproof lenses—the places and situations in which photography is possible are expanded to include more outdoor scenes, such as on the mountains and at the beach.

Nikon 1 AW1 is equipped with an Action Control function that enables quick and easy operation such as switching between menu screens, a Control Lock function that prevents accidental operation when wearing gloves, and also has a built-in electronic compass, altimeter, depth gauge, virtual horizon display, and location data functions that can be used to create logs for tracking depth or position. It also offers a number of unique functions to facilitate outdoor shooting, including an Outdoor Display Option that makes the display screen more visible outdoors or under bright sunlight.

Nikon 1 AW1 also features a new Underwater Creative Mode that makes it easy for anyone to enjoy underwater photography. Users can choose from three underwater options: Standard, Scuba, and Close Up. The image colors can also be viewed and tweaked using the live view display to achieve desired colors. A number of functions convenient for underwater photography are also available, including Underwater options for white balance and auto distortion control. The Nikon AW 1 digital camera and lenses are now available in local photo stores.

Innovative Smartphone
LG G2Following the global success of its premium smartphones in the ‘Optimus’ series, which saw 500,000 units of the LG Optimus G Pro sold within the first 40 days, LG is taking its smartphone success to the next level with new premium device under the ‘G’ series. The ‘G’ brand is a bold statement of LG’s position as one of the world’s leaders in smartphone innovations with premium quality and the most advanced features developed to deliver an unrivalled, seamless user experience.

LG G2 was launched in New York recently. The device gained great attention from consumers and media around the globe, including the well-regarded U.S. website phonearena.com, where the handset won a poll for the most coveted android smartphone with nearly 40 percent of the total votes, leaving the second-ranked device with just around 20 percent of votes, followed by others with fewer votes. The wait is almost over for LG fans and those who desire a unique android smartphone in Thailand, as LG looks forward to introducing the ‘LG G2’ to the market very soon.

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