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Bike Snob: Systematically and Mercilessly Realigning the World of Cycling [Hardcover]

Bikesnobnyc , Christopher Koelle
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 May 2010
Cycling is exploding - in a good way. Urbanites everywhere, from ironic hipsters to earth-conscious commuters, are taking to the bike like aquatic mammals to water. BikeSnobNYC - cycling's most prolific, well-known, hilarious, and anonymous blogger - brings a fresh and humorous perspective to the most important vehicle to hit personal transportation since the horse. Bike Snob treats readers to a laugh-out-loud rant and rave about the world of bikes and their riders, and offers a unique look at the ins and outs of cycling, from its history and hallmarks to its wide range of bizarre practitioners. Throughout, the author lampoons the missteps, pretensions, and absurdities of bike culture while maintaining a contagious enthusiasm for cycling itself. Bike Snob is an essential volume for anyone who knows, is, or wants to become a cyclist. Bycicles have experienced a resurgence in popularity over the past few years so this book is sure to appeal to many. The book includes 2-colour sketches and breakout boxes with hints and tips throughout. Visit the popular blog at
--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 223 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books (CA); First Edition edition (5 May 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811869989
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811869980
  • Product Dimensions: 18.1 x 16.1 x 2.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 848,690 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Authors

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Product Description

About the Author

The Bike Snob writes a wickedly funny blog poking holes in practically every pretension in the cycling world. His blog careens unexpectedly between the worlds of pro cycling, hipsters, fixed gear bikes, Craigslist ads and the indignity of bike commuting (especially in New York). He never runs out of targets - the studied poses of various cycling subcultures has given him an unending stream. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Freewheeling 30 Nov 2010
By Arthur Dooley VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I understand that the author-Bike SnobNYC- is a highly successful US anonymous bike blogger.In Bike Snob,the author takes aim at a selection of bike nuts,weirdos and fellow bike snobs with varying levels of success. Perhaps being British,a lot of the humour went over my head although some targets are universally recognized.
A bit lightweight really and something I will pass on fairly quickly.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Written by a lover of cycling 8 Oct 2010
Great book. Opinionated; but that makes it so enjoyable. Amongst all the flipancy, there is also very good advice. I came late to cycling, and on the one hand this book made me appreciate it all the more, but also makes me regret all those years I missed out on.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I love the blog, and the book hasn't disappointed. It is a good read, fun, and totally slaughters pretension and senseless fashion. Clearly its a book for cyclists, but its more than that too. Plus, it is beautiful - well laid out, nice graphic touches, illustrations and phots. Looks really good.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Difficult for long rides. 17 Mar 2011
By Chris Morse VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I had high hopes for this book. It's very nicely made, hard backed book, gold print, colour pages and lots of diagrams etc.
It's written by a Blog writer, and I think they've tried to emulate the blog experience in the book.
The chapters take you through a history lesson, fashion, do's and dont's and basic tales of the road.
What I found hard, which I would say the same about blog's in general, is that you tend to only be able to read short bursts at once, these long epistles show up that this isn't great writing, I grew tired of it pretty quickly. I think if each page had been a subject/tale this would have worked a lot better.
Something else I thought was missing (coming from a daily cyclist) is the wonders you see whilst cycling, sure I understand a lot of what he says, and have seen a great deal in my 30yrs on a bike. I definatly don't feel the same 'philisophical' way he does about drivers trying to kill you though.

Pros: A book to pick up, read for a while and put back. Maybe I'll leave mine in a waiting room.
Cons: Difficult to hold your interest for more than a few pages at a time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A humourous and endearing read 16 Mar 2011
By Peter Piper TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Bike Snob is one of those books that you find yourself annoying other people with. "Listen to this!" and "This will make you laugh!" was a phrase my wife got used to whilst I read this book.

In part a historical account of cycling. In part an analysis of the various kinds of cyclists, and yet in part an attempt to shift the reader's perspective of the bicycle. If this book were called "Zen, and the art of cycling", the title would fit. In fairness, there was one passage I found dull, which detailed a journey across an old cycling route in America, but I can see this appealing to someone more interested in the history of cycling than I am.

I'm a keen cyclist myself, so much of this book was relevant to me, but I can see it's appeal to anyone who has ever thrown a leg over a bike, or wished they could ride. However it's wit and humour broaden the appeal of the book to pretty-much anyone who has so much as seen a bicycle. It is also very nicely bound and has a good solid feel to it, which is incidental, but appreciated.

To surmise, I selected this book from the choice of books I was asked to review thinking it looked like it would be a fun and interesting read, and it surpassed all expectations. I heartily recommend it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Irreverant look at the world of cycling 24 Feb 2011
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The book is a lovely size and fits in the hand well - and whether it was a consideration of not, would happily fit snuggly in a cycling jersey back pocket.

The book covers everything from the history of cycling through to modern life and the challenges this brings as a cyclist.

One of the key factors for me, is that as a keen cyclist with a passion for the mode of transport and sport yet also a driver, the book doesn't demonise or run drivers into the ground (if you excuse the pun) but instead deals with the real issues you have to face as a cyclist in the 21st century.

I learnt some really interesting facts about the beginning of cycling and how passionate people were about it as a sport and a method of transport, and how this has reduced but is returning. I also love the humour. This has been a lunch break book for me and the way its laid out is great for dipping in and out of. It also provides a slice of homour, interest and intelligent writing which makes it a joy to read.

I'd certainly recommend this to any cycling fan out there.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I love my cycling. I really, truly, deeply do. Some witty musings about my second (or possibly third) favourite pastime; what could be more agreeable?

So it was with very high hopes that I plunged into this book. And yet, within a few chapters, I had to admit to myself that I found it all rather heavy going in places. Bike Snob, being a famous (well apparently so - I must confess I hadn't heard of him, until the Vine Programme enlightened me) blogger, sure knows his stuff, but clearly also loves the sound of his own voice and is extremely verbose. Page after page of describing the early cycling pioneers failed to generate much in the way of atmosphere. Things bucked up a bit with his definition of what makes a cyclist and I began to warm to the material a bit more with the gently amusing and perceptive Subsets of Cyclists section. How not to get killed and his musings on maintenance and how to lock your bike continue in the same vein of quirky waffle and occasionally clumsy attempts at humour but then, out of the blue, he hits the nail on the head with a profound truism. I particularly like "Everything about riding a bicycle compels you towards beauty". Nice.

Don't expect any real belly laughs but, if you're on the side of the cyclist, Bike Snob's gentle quirky wit and occasional poetically eloquent musings will probably just about win you over.

Worth a look.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Enlightening
Very enjoyable read for any cyclist
Published 29 days ago by Lionel Beckford
5.0 out of 5 stars very funny book
Very funny well-written book. Also informative. People who own / ride a bike will love this.
Published 1 month ago by Ann1953
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Buy this book.
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book. One or two 'Americanisms' that make little ...
Excellent book. One or two 'Americanisms' that make little sense to the European reader but otherwise brilliant, irreverent, funny and deeply thought-provoking. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Kindle Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Not alone
As a cyclist I found this book to be a wonderful relief, there is nothing new in it, but every cyclist who picks it up will feel reassured that they are not in fact going mad, and... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Surfer Nomad
4.0 out of 5 stars one for the bikers
Cyclists -as I once was and still occasionally am - have among their number a significant proportion who are given to opinions about just about everything. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Mr. A. K. N. Bernhardt
4.0 out of 5 stars A nice easy read, pretty funny too
I'd seen some good reviews so kind of knew what to expect... It didn't disappoint, really funny and I couldn't put it down.
Published on 11 Jun 2012 by danthemackem
2.0 out of 5 stars An uphill struggle
It's a mildly amusing little book, but a lot of the humour is American and doesn't translate very well, however it has it's moments and I guess hard core cyclists will appreciate... Read more
Published on 25 May 2012 by Jr Lorrimer
3.0 out of 5 stars A New Yorkers view
This is a book by a New York blogger/cyclist. Not having heard of this Eben Weiss before I was not sure what to expect and got this book for some cyclists in the family. Read more
Published on 19 Jan 2012 by Stevetrumpet
3.0 out of 5 stars Well Presented and Good to Dip Into
This is Bike Snob NYC's book: a collection of blog posts that is well designed and presented, with a variety of funny and insightful illustrations. Read more
Published on 24 Jun 2011 by L. Hardt
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