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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic ride described with wit and skill, 2 Sept. 2014
By 
Thomas Cunliffe "Committed to reading" (Sussex, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
I've always thought that long-distance cyclists are the greatest athletes and reading Gironimo by Tim Moore has convinced me. To ride round Italy on the route of the 1914 Giro d'Italia is no mean feat, but to do it on a vintage bike with reproduction clothing from the period is an amazing feat

Tim already amazed his readers by cycling the route of the Tour de France (recorded in his book French Revolutions) but Gironimal describes roads and mountains which seem to be even worse, and with the addition of the immense heat (40+ degrees Centigrade) and the ongoing problems of his ancient bike, I could only admire his great stickability which kept him going day after day until he arrived back at his starting point 400 kms later.

There are three things which make this a fantastic read

1. The combination of Tim's ride with frequent flash-backs to events on the original 1914 tour - of interest to anyone who is interested in the limits of human endurance;
2. The travel aspects - this is a real tour of Italy and we learn much about the geography and culture of the country along the way;
3. Tim's huge sense of humour which pervades the book and makes it not only very interesting but also very funny.

I can't imagine how Tim managed to complete this ride - at times he appears to have been in the depths of hell, on the verge of losing his mind with despair and exhaustion. Yet he managed to find the inner reserves to keep going. I love the way that at the end of his epic ride he finds the acclaim he richly deserved, but in a very unexpected way.

I've read all Tim Moore's book, but this is the best. Buy it and see what travel/sport writing is all about.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bravissimo, Tim!, 3 Jun. 2014
By 
ಠ_ಠ (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
I caught a couple of episodes of Gironimo! on Radio 4 and had to stop myself from listening to any more and buy the book. I giggled and snorted my way through the 300-odd pages in one very late night and a couple of red-faced, teary-eyed train journeys. This is not quite, erm, man and machine in perfect unison, but rather adventures and more often than not, misadventures of a bumbling, eccentric Brit on his ancient deathtrap of a bicycle, all recounted with great humour (and that slight tinge of madness after a long day in the saddle).

It is also quite moving in places, Tim obviously has a lot of affection for the hardy boys of the 1914 Giro, most of whom went on to never win a race or a stage again, some killed in the war not long after, all long dead. He brings the ghosts of those riders to life vividly, as he wobbles about in their tyre tracks in a long forgotten edition of the Giro.

Absolutely and wholeheartedly recommended to anyone who loves cycling and is in need of cheering up! Off to read French Revolutions now in antcipation of Le Tour.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS NOW!, 14 May 2014
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
Normally I'd only reserve heading into central London for a Monday shopping trip to buy a CD on its first day of release (yeah, I know) but I made an exception for Gironimo! Then I realised it was a fiver cheaper on Amazon, and as I've got my own knackered vintage bike (ok, from 1990) to repair, I waited patiently for the postman to deliver Mr Moore's latest, and save me a few quid. It was worth the wait. Tim Moore is the only author worth looking like an idiot on the 7.31 to Charing Cross for, as I laughed and snorted my way through the book each day. Another excellent edition to the growing list of fantastic cycling literature by the likes of William Fotheringham, Richard Moore and Ned Boulting, which is topped by the mighty French Revolutions by the same author.

It'll restore the faith of those of us that have copies of Not About The Bike staring shamefully down from the bookshelves.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a bloke!, 7 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
Hilarious, as always. A really well-written book - lively, engaging, knowledgeable and laugh-out-loud-in-a-public-place funny. Tim Moore really does like to make life painful for himself!
Please do read this book - I guarantee you will enjoy it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astonishing And Unputdownable, 18 Jun. 2015
By 
Keith M - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
This remarkable account of a middle-aged (well 48-year old) amateur cyclist completing the 3,300km 8-stage Giro D’Italia course of 1914 on 'period machinery’ is my first taste of Tim Moore’s writing and it certainly won’t be my last. As the cover blurb hints, Moore’s writing is reminiscent of (a more profane) Bill Bryson at his best – the closest comparator to Gironimo probably being Bryson’s challenging Appalachian Trail book, A Walk In The Woods. And, the initial stages of Moore’s account, as he tries to reconstruct the 'period bike’ to be used on reliving the 1914 race, are full of Brysonesque (and typically male) geekiness, but it is, of course, the physical scale of Moore’s challenge which makes it near-unique in terms of 'travel writing’.

As well as being genuinely laugh-out-loud funny, in parallel with his own exploits Moore charts the progress (which would make an astonishing book in its own right) of the actual 1914 Giro competitors – of which over half of the 81 starters did not make it past Stage 1 and only eight survived the entire race! Along the way, Moore also gives us an entertaining and intriguing glimpse into the Italian psyche (see Tim Parks’ writing for more on this subject) and evocatively conveys the country’s love for, and long history of, this most addictive of endurance sports.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Equally Entertaining and Interesting, 23 Feb. 2015
By 
Rich (Wellington, Somerset) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
If you've read any Tim Moore books before, you'll know what to expect; a wry and self deprecating account of an adventure, full of insightful observations and humour. As a cyclist, I first came to his books from reading French Revolutions, and that's certainly one of his best books. This one covers very similar territory, as you might expect from the title, and provides him with a great deal of scope to examine the history of the event and its personalities, alongside the tale of his own personal struggle to recreate the ride. Although he makes light of it, I've no doubt that riding the route on a vintage bike with two gears must have been incredibly tough, but it does provide him with a great deal of scope for his entertaining observations and self mockery. If you've read many of Tim Moore's books, like I have, then this is more of the same, but no less funny or interesting for that.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 24 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
I had heard some of this as a BBC book of the week and thought it would be good for a friend of mine.
It certainly was!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Funny, 18 Jun. 2014
By 
Mr. James R. Gilmour (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
I had heard this book being read on Radio4 which was very amusing so ordered it and on reading it I found it even more amusing, Great Stuff, a very good author!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, 30 May 2014
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This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
Although I enjoyed Gironimo! it was neither as fresh nor as funny as French Revolutions. There is a limit to how interesting it is to hear about the mechanical problems of an old bike and Tim Moore is much more engaging when he talks about people and places - he's especially good when talking about himself, he is charmingly self-deprecating. A good read, but, if asked to choose, I'd always take French Revolutions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A rollicking good read, 25 Aug. 2014
This review is from: Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy (Paperback)
A middle aged guy, taking on history's toughest cycle ride - in period costume and on an antique bike he rebuilt himself - with limited preparation. The perfect ingredients for an entertaining travelogue for us to enjoy in the comfort of a far more relaxed seat.
He is clearly a spoke short of a wheel but funny with it.
This is my first encounter with his writing and I will be reading more.
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Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy
Gironimo!: Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy by Tim Moore (Paperback - 1 May 2014)
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