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On Bicycles: 50 Ways the New Bike Culture Can Change Your Life Paperback – 15 Oct 2011

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Amazon.com: 22 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Makes me want to ride my bike 18 Oct. 2011
By mykle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a wide-ranging collection of essays both personal and erudite about what bicycling means, how it relates to an examined life and an anxious planet, and above all how to do it in style. Wisdom, advice, musings and digressions, a touch of revolutionary spirit and a ton of encouragement and good advice. Much of it is written by Momentum Magazine contributors (hello!), and super-editor Amy Walker has five or six nice essays in there herself.

It's also a gorgeously designed and illustrated bon-bon of a paperback. The cover photo doesn't clue you in that the corners are sanded to a nice roundness, the better to weather a trip in your pannier squooshed against your bouncing groceries. Looks good on a shelf, fits nicely in the hands.

If you're trying to convince yourself or someone else to become a bicyclist, this book is the help you need. If you've been biking for ages, you'll sympathize with the authors. If you're a car, it will make you honk.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Biking away 19 Oct. 2011
By Laurent F. Rains - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
A wonderful compendium about cycling culture and the place of bicycles in our own culture, "On Bicycles" collects winning essays ranging from choosing a bicycle shop to dressing stylish while you are riding. Amy Walker has done a great job of picking top notch writers for this latest project. It is important to note that "On Bicycles" does not focus on the recreational rider, but rather on practical advise for incorporating the bicycle into your daily life. If you would like to use your bicycle as part of your day to day transportation options you should check out this book, if you already ride your bike around town you will find great tips and great essays.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Amy Rules! 12 Nov. 2011
By ninja boy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I find this book intriguing: fifty essays by thirty-three authors on just about every imaginable aspect of practical cycling.

If you need to know about what to wear when cycling, or how to cycle in the rain, or what to wear when cycling in the rain, editor/author Amy Walker has it covered.

If you need to know why hub-shifting bikes with encased chains are ideal for practical urban transportation, or the advantages of riding a fixed-gear in the city, Walker has recruited experts to tell you that.

If you need to get your children safely to school, or advocate for safe infrastructure for cycling, you will find that Amy has excellent advice on those subjects too.

Finally, if your Zen self desires to be liberated as a bicycle bodhisattva, just read chapter 10.

This book is encyclopedic. Every sane cyclist must possess it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Great Book! 22 Oct. 2011
By Nate D. Perry - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is future focused, optimistic, and will make you want to ride! I'm fascinated by bike culture and its numerous views. Amy Walker keeps it fresh and upbeat. This is breath of fresh air considering I drive AND bike, and am not interested in whining about either group. Its is a compilation of sorts with numerous contributors that really add dimension to the publication as a whole. Its a great read for experienced riders as well as someone who is just getting started and needs some inspiration.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Good, But Gee, Self-Congratulatory Much? 6 July 2012
By S. Lawrence - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a lovely book to help someone gather her courage and start riding a bike. The articles are very Rah, Rah and provide foot-noted backup to what cyclists already know and what others already suspect - riding a bike is a blast, great for health and fitness, and is good for the environment.

My favorite piece was Carmen Mills' Notes from a Bicycle Bodhisattva; it stands out for its infectious joy. The author is convincing about how cycling frees us from the worst curses of modern culture - greed, keeping up with the Joneses, etc. She writes, "With the bicycle as my primary mode of transportation...it is clear how little I really need to be content." If that doesn't get you on your bike, nothing will.

What's less appealing in the book though, is how P-L-E-A-S-E-D many of the writers are with themselves for biking. They walk - ride? - right up to the precipice of saying cyclists are better people than motorists, as if cycling alone absolves one of caring for the widows, orphans and the oppressed.

There's a super-cool indie, DIY, "having fun with no money" vibe to today's bicycle culture. What a shame if people get so turned off from the smugness they miss the pleasure of endorphins zooming through their bloodstream as they pedal 'round their cities.

Dunno. I could just be grumpy. Maybe I'll go out and ride for a while....
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