Philip Cornwel-Smith’s latest book, Very Bangkok, might have been just another of the umpteen guide books on Thailand’s capital, Bangkok. Why another book on this egotistical and egocentric subject? But Cornwel-Smith is no typical guide. The very breadth of Very Bangkok provides a comprehensive and fresh take on the capital and its role within the country. It also gives us new insights into Isaan and its troubling relationship to the capital.