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Thunder and Sunshine Paperback – 1 Jun 2008

84 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 350 pages
  • Publisher: Eye Books; First Edition edition (1 Jun. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903070546
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903070543
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 2.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 221,349 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Alastair Humphreys is an Adventurer, Microadventurer, Author and Blogger.

He spent over 4 years cycling round the world, a journey of 46,000 miles through 60 countries and 5 continents.
More recently Alastair has walked across southern India, run 6 marathons through the Sahara desert, completed a crossing of Iceland, and participated in an expedition in the Arctic (close to the magnetic North Pole) and rowed across the Atlantic Ocean.
Alastair has trekked 1000 miles across the Empty Quarter desert and 120 miles round the M25 - one of his pioneering microadventures.

He was named a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year for his microadventures - simple, local adventures perfect for people's busy lives.

www.alastairhumphreys.com
www.twitter.com/al_humphreys
www.facebook.com/alastairhumphreys

Product Description

Review

Humphreys conveys his loneliness, wanderlust, grit and despair in a manner reminiscent of the great tradition of British explorers. --The Guardian

An exceptional book of a real adventure written by a real adventurer. --Tom Kevill-Davies

The first great adventure of the new millenium. --Sir Ranulph Fiennes

An exceptional book of a real adventure written by a real adventurer. --Tom Kevill-Davies

The first great adventure of the new millenium. --Sir Ranulph Fiennes

About the Author

Alastair Humphreys, in addition to cycling round the world, has also competed in the Marathon des Sables, the 'toughest race on earth,' running 150 miles through the Sahara. Despite breaking his foot during the race he still finished as one of the top ten British runners. He rowed across the channel with Major Phil Packer to raise money for Help For Heroes, travels to Sierra Leone to support his main charity cause: Hope and Homes for Children.

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

40 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Lord on 23 Jun. 2008
Format: Paperback
Alastair's first book was great: ordinary Yorkshire lad toughens up in the crucible of Africa and triumphs. In his second and much better book, Alastair pushes himself even harder and becomes a Nietzschean superman, riding the Road of Bones in Siberia in winter in temperatures of minus 40 degrees. It's quite incredible how tough a man can become and still remain human, literate and sensitive, as Alastair does.

This book has it all, it's a great travel read, a look into the human soul and how most people, given enough determination, could attempt something like this and grow massively in the process. For bikers, it's something special, as he has some great insights and tips for world bike touring and camping. Of all the world cycling books, this one is most relevant and useful for anyone thinking of or planning an adventure like this.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By John Speakman on 7 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback
I have read an awful lot of books about people making big long bike trips, and in my view this one is the best of the lot. It charts the second half of Alasdair Humphreys' round the world cycle trip and is a continuation of his first book, Moods of future joys. In this book he travels by boat from Cape town to Rio, and then by bus to very southern tip of the Americas. From there he cycles up the west coast of south America through to Columbia, where he then hops on a boat for a while, before continuing by bicycle up through the western seaboard of the States and Canada. Another boat trip, Alaska and he reaches the top of the Americas. All that in 161 pages. There is adventure, humour, thrills and spills throughout. Sometimes he cycles alone, sometimes with others, sometimes naked. The momentum never stops. This is so much more than a travelog. But if that wasnt enough he then gets another boat, crosses the icy depths of Siberia, Japan, China, the `stans' and back through Europe. The second half if anything is better than the first. I don't know if he was a writer before he set out, but he certainly was one by the time he got back. This is so much more than a story about a bloke from yorkshire on a bike. It is a journey of self discovery that you can share and learn from. Inspiring and entertaining at the same time.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Jaysview on 30 Jun. 2008
Format: Paperback
Enjoyed the first book. Good that this follows on (although it stands alone as a book - you don't have to have read the first volume). It is easy to care for the writer, so its nice to find out what happened to him next.

Once again there is expression of emotion, confidence, doubt etc which is so much better than the boring travelogs of some, who mistakenly think just listing places visited is a story. I hope to read more from this author in the future.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Audax Joe on 8 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback
I'd say this is a must read book for the simple fact that it goes against the grain - no massive back up, expensive equipment or 'fastest, strongest, quickest' just a brilliant understated story. Buy it now!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S. Di Lizio on 12 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback
This book continues on from "Moods of Future Joys". I loved both books (read my review for the first book). Also, every person I have borrowed these books to, regardless of whether or not they were outdoorsy, adventurous or sporty themselves, loved them too!

If you want a pair of books to get you motivated to help achieve some of those big goals in your life, I'd thoroughly recommend "Moods of Future Joys" and "Thunder and Sunshine".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By BeeKeeper on 27 Dec. 2010
Format: Paperback
This book, Alistair's second volume of his travels by bicycle around the world, along with the first volume are simply outstanding. If you are serious about travelling the world by bicycle then they are mandatory reading. If you prefer the comfort of your sofa or armchair these books will still stir your imagination and curiosity for the world. They are superbly written and compelling reading. Simply brilliant.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 27 Nov. 2009
Format: Paperback
A must for every bicycle lover involved in 1 to 100.000 miles trip around the block or around the world.
It's not a "technical" book but a kind of novel about touring alone, meeting other people and lifestyles.
Extremely well written but "friendly": I'm Italian and my English is not so good, but I've been able to understand 95% of the book without a dictionary!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Suhail Zubaid AHMAD on 7 Dec. 2011
Format: Paperback
I read this book 3 years after it was published, but I am glad that I discovered the writer and his three books on epic journeys on bicycle. This book covers the time period from early to mid 2000s, but the conditions described therein will be relevant even 20 years down the road.

So Alastair Humphreys started his epic journey on bicycle from Ushuaia at the southern tip of Argentina, pedaled along Argentina - Chile borderline on the Andes through Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, took a yatch through Pacific Ocean to Mexico, continued pedaling through western USA, British Columbia (Canada), Alaska, to Siberia through Bearing Strait, into Japan, China and then on to Central Asian Stan countries, over Caucasus, into Turkey, crossing into Europe and through Balkans, Switzerland, France all the way back to his hometown in Yorkshire - over 70,000 kms in total.

This book made Bill Bryson's hike on the Appalachian Trail a mere backyard tourism. I had thought that Sarfraz Khan's hike through Pakistan's and Afghanistan's remotest regions for establishing schools for Greg Mortensen's CAI as narrated in the book 'Stones into School' was adventure at its best. However, Humphrey's cycling super-adventure stands in a league of its own.

Thunder and Sunshine is not only about Humphrey's physical and psychological struggles. It is also about culture that he encounters and describes in detail. He did a brilliant job while describing people and conditions in Siberia, China, and Stan countries.

At the end of his journey, Humphrey regretted that it was coming to an end and just wanted to turn his bike and head to Australia. I was left with the same feeling.
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