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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Top Fun from Top Gear man
As a fan of Top Gear I was looking forward to reading lots of behind the scenes titbits. The book delivered on the trip to Botswana and the Arctic Challenge. Lots of amusing anecdotes and a real feel of being there. Also really enjoyed the chapter about Hammond running home through the floods for his daughters birthday. Where the book ran out of steam was the chapter...
Published on 4 July 2009 by Suebecca

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Rather disappointing
Hamster comes across very well on TV and I was expecting a similar level of humour here. Sadly, it's lacking. A disproportionate amount of the book is taken up with the Arctic adventure, going into rather obsessive detail, so much so that it became very dull indeed. The other stories are interesting, but I think that more anecdotes could have been put in on different...
Published on 16 July 2009 by Dr. Thomas


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Top Fun from Top Gear man, 4 July 2009
By 
Suebecca (Essex England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: As You Do: Adventures With Evel, Oliver, and The Vice-President Of Botswana (Paperback)
As a fan of Top Gear I was looking forward to reading lots of behind the scenes titbits. The book delivered on the trip to Botswana and the Arctic Challenge. Lots of amusing anecdotes and a real feel of being there. Also really enjoyed the chapter about Hammond running home through the floods for his daughters birthday. Where the book ran out of steam was the chapter about Evil Kenievel. Fans of Top Gear and The Hamster - enjoy!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From Husky's to Harley's via Gloucestershire, 30 Dec 2008
By 
BD "bigdave2020" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Those looking for an in depth insight into the behind the scenes goings on of Top Gear, or a personal diary from Richard similar to the style of his `on the edge' publication then this book isn't for you. But if what you want is a light read that is easy to dip in and out of when you get a moment, this book is ideal. Light hearted in approach and jovial in tone, it covers the stories of his significant filmed events over the past year and his feelings and thoughts around those challenges. Personally I think Richard went back into the throws of Top Gear too soon and this book does at times show this, particularly with his reactions to certain situations (other peoples I-pod songs and his obsession with his clothing and the colour of his harley rental before meeting Evel for example).

Some say... that Hammond should take heed, slow down and curl up with a cup of coco after his accident. But others like me say good on you Richard for finding the strength to carry on and doing what you love. Without the Top Gear show and people like Richard our world be utterly dominated by back to back soap operas, expensive phone line dancing\singing\'talent' contests and tacky quiz shows. Top Gear and the presenters on it give us some sanity and relief from this mainstream dross, and long may they continue..
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good holiday reading, 26 Aug 2009
By 
N. Young (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: As You Do: Adventures With Evel, Oliver, and The Vice-President Of Botswana (Paperback)
Hmm. While James and Jeremy don't so much write books as collect some of their better newspaper/magazine columns together and call them books, Richard opts for telling the behind-the-scenes stories from some of Top Gear's finest hours (in this case, the Polar Race, amphibious cars and the African odyssey), combined with his own programme on Evel Kineval and how he travelled through a flooded Gloucestershire so he could be with his daughter on her birthday.

As such, it could be a disjointed collection of stories - but somehow it isn't. For instance, the amphibious cars debacle is cleverly juxtaposed with the flood story. Parts of it are laugh-out-loud hilarious, notably the meeting with a real Hell's Angel. And some of Top Gear's unsung heroes, such as Flash the cameraman, get a deserved share of the limelight for a change.

Richard Hammond is no fool. He knows that his most likely audience here is people who watch Top Gear, and this book is aimed fairly and squarely at telling said viewers a bit about what goes on when the cameras aren't rolling.

It's not brilliant by any means, but it's a good read that will keep you entertained for a few hours. I treated it as light holiday reading and found it to be most fit for purpose.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Rather disappointing, 16 July 2009
By 
Dr. Thomas (UK) - See all my reviews
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Hamster comes across very well on TV and I was expecting a similar level of humour here. Sadly, it's lacking. A disproportionate amount of the book is taken up with the Arctic adventure, going into rather obsessive detail, so much so that it became very dull indeed. The other stories are interesting, but I think that more anecdotes could have been put in on different aspects of the programme. He does not write nearly as well as the other two, but his background is broadcasting rather than written journalism. I agree with one of the other reviewers that the language is way too strong as his fan base will include children. Clarkson did comment once that Hammond is prone to swearing (a lot), but it should have been edited out of the book. It isn't big and it isn't clever Richard, so please keep it out of your books. As a TG fan I'd be interested in future books, but I think I'll be getting them from the library rather than buying them. I guess that as TG is now a 'brand' we can expect more 'product', let's just hope it isn't dashed out whilst they're all still on the crest of the current massive wave...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Richard Hammond at The North Pole and Interviewing Evel Knievel, 12 Jan 2013
By 
C. Kidd (Dibden, Hampshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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For Christmas Hannah gave me a copy of As You Do: Adventures With Evel, Oliver, and The Vice-President Of Botswana by Richard Hammond.

The book focuses on four major stories:

The Top Gear North Pole challenge
Driving across Botswana for Top Gear
Running 17 miles through floods in Gloucestershire to be at his daughter's birthday
Interviewing Evel Knievel
I always find Richard Hammond to be highly personable and enjoy Top Gear so was interested to read some of his reflections following "that crash". I hoped to gain further insight into how Top Gear works: how do they come up with the challenges, how do they really rip apart their cars and build them into some sort of new monstrosity

The book gives some good background to the North Pole challenge, and to his interviewing of Evel Knievel, but not much more. I found the story of how he ran seventeen miles across the floods in Gloucestershire amusing but not something I'd re-read again.

It is an entertaining book, but not one I'd rush out to buy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So so, 16 Feb 2011
This review is from: As You Do: Adventures With Evel, Oliver, and The Vice-President Of Botswana (Paperback)
I like Richard Hammond and I watch Top Gear. I was really hoping for a lot of behind the scenes stories about Botswana and the Arctic Challenge. But this was dull.

Childish and swearing - like a teenager. Stories of the Arctic were slow and getting duller by the minute. The best scenes from the show weren't even mentioned. Not much at all about Botswana and the stories did not capture the moment on TG where he got Oliver working again.

I was listening to this on CD, and it was nice to hear Richard reading it; but I paid £15 and would never listen to it again. Shame.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable, 14 Dec 2010
By 
Mrs. K. A. Wheatley "katywheatley" (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: As You Do: Adventures With Evel, Oliver, and The Vice-President Of Botswana (Paperback)
I thought this was excellent fun. Richard Hammond writes well, and has an engagingly chatty style which works beautifully with the kind of material he is delivering here. He has chosen in this book to focus on a few adventures, firstly his Arctic dog sled race against Jeremy and James as seen on Top Gear, his trip across Botswana in an Opel Kadett, as also seen on Top Gear, his experiences of the flooding in Gloucestershire and his attempts to get home to his daughter's birthday party, and to rescue a flooded friend, and his meeting with Evel Kinevil.

I thought the stories were well balance. Having seen the Top Gear episodes he alludes to, I thought I might find them boring, but I really didn't at all. There were enough personal gems and behind the scenes snippets in there to inject the tales with new life. The flood stories were funny and original, and never having seen the documentary with Evel, not being a huge fan of the man, it made for interesting reading.

If you like Richard Hammond on telly, you will like him just as much in book form. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A lightweight read for a little relaxation but don't expect anything earth shattering., 14 Aug 2010
By 
Dale A. Haines "master_ice" (England) - See all my reviews
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First off completely ignore the product description that has been tagged onto this book by Amazon. This is because Amazon's description refers to several events which aren't even mentioned in the book.
Notwithstanding this it's a reasonable "dip into" book for whiling away the odd 15 minutes here and there.
You won't learn anything spectacular about Richard Hammond and his life other than, perhaps his running 15+ miles through floods to get home in time for his daughters birthday as he'd promised. Remembering that this was after his horrendous jet car crash which left him critically injured and fighting back from brain damage.
The rest of the book is really just assorted post scripts to Top Gear and other motoring related stunts.
That's not to knock it I hasten to add, but just to pre-warn potential buyers that this won't be winning the Nobel prize for literature any time soon.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The cameramen are the real stars!, 21 Sep 2008
Uneven but fascinating to get to know the characters behind the scenes and to find out about the real close relationships with the people you never normally hear about. Very interesting about the North Pole and Botswana but peters out later and loses momentum. For true Top Gear fans only.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The inside track, 18 Feb 2014
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It gives the inside story of some of Top Gear most memorable episodes. Includes some more personal tales. And Oliver
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