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Long Way Round Hardcover – 11 Oct 2004


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Time Warner Books; First Edition edition (11 Oct. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316728683
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316728683
  • Product Dimensions: 16.4 x 3 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (87 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 293,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Long Way Round is the tale of a remarkable journey taken (on motorbike) by two men. The fact that those men are figures with notable film connections (Ewan McGregor is one of Britain’s most successful actors, Charley Boorman is the son of the celebrated director John Boorman) may be the reason the book got written – and the accompanying television series got made – but so what? This epic trip is conveyed with real élan by its two authors, and there are arguments for preferring the written word over the image: while the latter may convey the exhilaration of the journey more directly, the book is infinitely more subtle in presenting the mindset of its two (often-beleaguered) travellers. Their co-writer Robert Uhlig has cannily conveyed the similar (but at the same time, very different) personalities of the two men, and it’s one of the pleasures of the book.

McGregor, for whom motorbikes are as important as his acting career, was gazing at a map of the world when it occurred to him that it was possible to ride by bike all the way round the world (with just a smidgen of cheating around the Bering Strait), and he suggested over a meal with best friend and fellow thesp Charley Boorman, that the pair might chase their shadows from London to New York, across the Pacific to Alaska and other far-flung parts.

Needless to say, catastrophe matches the adventure at every turn, and encounters with gun-toting Ukrainians, Mongolian Nomads and (most dangerous of all) ruthless paparazzi add to the stress levels. But the 20,000 miles covered by the pair, however arduous for them, makes for a highly diverting experience for the reader. Now how do they follow this? Motorbikes are not built for lunar excursions… --Barry Forshaw

Review

Both McGregor and Boorman prove themselves to be engaging, articulate and entertaining narrators ... a highly readable and spiritually uplifting book about a dream come true (WANDERLUST)

Touching and memorable ... one for armchair travellers and bike freaks (DAILY MAIL)

Long Way Round is the tale of a remarkable journey taken (on motorbike) by two men. The fact that those men are figures with notable film connections (Ewan McGregor is one of Britain's most successful actors, Charley Boorman is the son of the celebrated director John Boorman) may be the reason the book got written - and the accompanying television series got made - but so what? This epic trip is conveyed with real élan by its two authors, and there are arguments for preferring the written word over the image: while the latter may convey the exhilaration of the journey more directly, the book is infinitely more subtle in presenting the mindset of its two (often-beleaguered) travellers. Their co-writer Robert Uhlig has cannily conveyed the similar (but at the same time, very different) personalities of the two men, and it's one of the pleasures of the book. McGregor, for whom motorbikes are as important as his acting career, was gazing at a map of the world when it occurred to him that it was possible to ride by bike all the way round the world (with just a smidgen of cheating around the Bering Strait), and he suggested over a meal with best friend and fellow thesp Charley Boorman, that the pair might chase their shadows from London to New York, across the Pacific to Alaska and other far-flung parts. (Needless to say, catastrophe matches the adventure at every turn, and encounters with gun-toting Ukrainians, Mongolian Nomads and (most dangerous of all) ruthless paparazzi add to the stress levels. But the 20,000 miles covered by the pair, however arduou)

Barry Forshaw, AMAZON.CO.UK ('It's like Michael Palin but with added sex appeal.')

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EWAN: On the last day, I walked down to the harbour. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By StuWG on 3 Dec. 2004
Format: Paperback
As a biker I can safely say this book describes a bikers dream come true. To ride around the world with a very healthy budget and all the toys that come with money/sponsorship. The book really gets over the difficulties endured and how much both Charly & Ewan missed their family. Some of it will make you laugh out loud or bring a lump to your throat. They are both keen motorcyclists who are human beings, not just movie stars. Written in the first person the book brings you close to both of them, letting you know what they were thinking, a lot more so than the television program lets on. I read it cover to cover in 5 days.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Alisdair Cunningham on 6 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
A friend introduced "The Long Way Round" to me, saying they loved it and thought I would too. I hadn't heard of it at the time, but then uni often involves being lost in the student based world with little outside current world knowledge. I watched a trailer on YouTube to see what it was like and was instantly caught by the idea, ... two friends on an adventure around the world. Im not a fan of motorcycles, but visiting countries you only imagine you would talk about and never visit, meeting people from different cultures and seeing amazing sights, its something few people would say no to if they had the money and time, right?! I watched one episode and was hooked, and reading a review on here saying the book gave a better insight into the personal thoughts and more detail of the feelings of the two actors, I decided to buy it first (after all, in most cases the book is better!). So I bought it today and am already half way through. I was originally a bit disappointed with the focus on the bikes at the start, but then it is their true passion. However, as I read on, you really do start to feel what they went through, and it's gripping! It is not meerly a day-by-day recital of thier trip, but a window to the emotions and experiences felt by them both. And like people have said before...it's not about the bikes, its about the adventure, experiencing the world with a true friend at your side!! I recommend this to anyone who is interested in the series!
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57 of 62 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 1 Nov. 2004
Format: Hardcover
I have been following Ewan and Charley journey via MCN and since they completed their epic journey have been looking forward to the release of the book. I was not disappointed. The way the book is written is such a refreshing change from usual travel books. Ewan and Charley take turns to write about parts of the journey each with a candid view of how each stage affected them including the strain on their friendship and their relationship with the support crew. It's a warts and all view of an epic journey covering the highs and the very lows in personal terms. Having read the book not only do I feel like I travelled with them I have got to know them as well.
I am a biker myself and Its nice to read other bikers talking about how things really are and the short comings in their own skills and confidence. Ewan and Charley are more than just Celebrity Actors they are true Bikers great friends and very likeable people who care about this adventure and the people they meet. I enjoyed every page of this book and when I finished my wife who hates bikes has started reading it and she seems to find enough to keep her reading as well.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Storey on 16 May 2008
Format: Paperback
A spiritual uplifting read that you don't even have to be into bikes to be able to enjoy.
This book is about two friends doing what they love the most, whilst meeting people and places, which have so little, yet are able to share so much.
Everyone has dreams but not everyone is brave enough to live them. These two were brave enough and has have shown us all that impossible is nothing.
The book made me feel like wanting to give up everything and go and do what they did.
During each chapter Evan and Charley both take turns speaking about their journey and both have their own style, which helps to bring balance to the book.
I enjoyed reading Evan's parts the most as he really digs deeps into his emotional state.
In one chapter he says something along the lines of "We are all the same around the world, we all love family, we all want food and we all want somewhere to sleep at night, I couldn't agree more with him.
The part of the journey I enjoyed reading the most about was when they travelled between Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Russia. They meet so many different people in such barren places but despite all the troubles they come across they managed to overcome them because everyone they meet was so willing to give a hand.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By alliep on 6 July 2007
Format: Paperback
I am not a biker, not a great traveller as am usually broke, and thought that this would be just another hollywood star, going on about how he and his mate travelled round the world a bit, complete with winnebago and team of personal assistants, but no way - this book has been one of the most motivational I have read in long time.

The kindness of people they meet along the way - who often have far less material possessions than we do - is inspirational and should be something that we jaded and mistrusting Westerners should take on board. Also, the fact that they travel through countries that do not get much press is interesting, although the sections on the work done by Unicef is heartbreakingly sad, and made me want to turn into a mini Angelia Jolie and adopt as many as I could.

There was no winnebago in this story, just a small support crew (who end up feeling like family) complete with the most laconic doctor who is certainly funnier than the ones I work with! Charley and Ewan are able to be very real, open and honest, both emotionally and on a practical level, and you can really feel like you are there with them at times - it is certainly not an `air-brushed' account of a holiday away.

I'm off to do my CBT and get another bike - after a good 20 years. A truly amazing book to match a truly amazing journey.
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