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3.4 out of 5 stars24
3.4 out of 5 stars
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on 1 December 2011
Enthusiasts of early Land Rovers remind me of train spotters of old. The main difference and benefit for LR enthusiasts is that they can get to buy, drive, restore and generally tinker with their product - unlike the train spotters. The author is just such an enthusiast. By a remarkable series of coincidences he discovered that Arthur Goddard, the engineer responsible for development of the first, 80", Land Rover operated a business near that of his friend in Australia. He arranged for Goddard to visit Land Rover and meet with fellow enthusiasts on one of his trips back to the UK.

This book is a description of that discovery and of the researches that the author undertook in his quest for the early history of the product. Unfortunately, as another reviewer has already commented, the book needs editing. There is a degree of repetition of events; the spelling needs correcting. This does detract somewhat from a revealing story and the obvious enthusiasm of the author. The author also features with Arthur Goddard in an excellent DVD, called Stop Gap published by Teeafit Sound and Vision. This follows that same Arthur Goddard visit to Land Rover and the several of the locations where development testing took place. It also explores some of the myths and legends behind the early Land Rover. It seems to me that it was, in fact, a carefully defined project squarely aimed at both the military and agricultural markets - Goddard himself remarks that he spent much of his development effort meeting the needs of the military. The book and the DVD complement each other very well.
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on 13 December 2012
I bought this as a Christmas present after looking at some of the sample pages which looked fine, not at all the poor quality one or two reviewers had said and the text seemed to read OK. I was therefore very disappointed to find that there was a diagonal watermark "authorhouse" across the middle of every page. Although the text quality is good, it looks as if it was printed from a pirated file. Most of the photos are a bit dark and lacking in contrast. I will probably have to look for another present now.
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on 20 June 2011
This book fills in a lot of the gaps. The author's enthusiasm and commitment comes over really well, and even allows the reader to live with or forgive the numerous typos or grammatical inaccuracies. Quite insightful, and readable.
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on 25 November 2013
Read the other reviews of this book and draw your own conclusion ! As a Land Rover owner, traveller and enthusiast this book will remain in my collection for its historical information, BUT I absolutely agree with reviewers CADMAN and ENGINEER in their overall criticism of the appalling way in which this book has been authored and produced. It has not been proof read and edited and is an overall insult to the buying public !!!
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on 12 July 2013
This book fills in a number of gaps in the history of the world's most iconic vehicle, and as such is an important historical work. It should on that basis be a great book, but sadly it is let down very badly by three, completely unnecessary, flaws, which are such as to make reading it an almost overwhelming effort rather than a pleasure.

Firstly, the book is printed on very poor quality paper and the print quality suggests that it was produced on an obsolescent laser printer of poor quality. This means that the reproduction of the illustrations is so poor as to render them pointless. What a shame!

Secondly, for some inexplicable reason every single page is "watermarked" with with the publisher's name diagonally across the middle of the page. This has the effect of rendering the book almost unreadable, and is quite extraordinary! I can accept that there are valid reasons why certain documents should be watermarked thus, but a printed book? Is the publisher completely mad?

Thirdly, the author, whilst clearly very enthusiastic about the subject matter, appears only to have the flimsiest understanding of the rudiments of the English language. Seldom if ever have I come across a book with so many grammatical and syntactic errors, incorrect spellings, and transposed captions. Examples include persistent misuse of "I" and "me", "their" and "there", "its'[sic]" and "its", and numerous other such annoyances. It appears that no-one with even a basic grasp of language was involved at any stage in the book's production.

That being said, it remains an interesting read provided that you can struggle past these shortcomings. It is very much a book for the specialist, and perhaps in the fullness of time a second edition will be produced to a proper professional standard. It earns three stars solely on the quality of the information, it would earn zero for the quality of writing and production.
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on 6 December 2013
As above, stamped diagonally across every single page, spoilt the reading and made most of the fine drawing diagrams impossible to see and understand.
Book has been returned to Amazon and the publishers in the US got an email from me. They are looking into the problem as it seems that the printers overstepped the mark.
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on 6 January 2013
the print and paper is of poor quality and the publisher stamp their name on every page, would not recommend
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on 17 November 2011
Contents and concept-wise, this is an excellent book. It covers an aspect of Land Rover's history never previously published and I greatly enjoyed the mental image I formed as I read it, regretting not knowing about 'The Evening with Arthur Goddard' until after the event. It was a 'feel good' read that easily deserved 5 stars. However, it's presentation is dreadful. It is full of mistakes, with almost every page containing spelling errors, and/or grammatical errors, and/or just very poor English. It gets worse towards the end and many times I had my reading flow abruptly halted as words were missing and I had to go back to work out what was actually meant. It has clearly not been proof-read, and in an era of computerised spelling and grammar checkers this is unacceptable in my opinion. For this I gave it only 1 star, hence the 3 star average. How about a revised edition Michael? This is a book that should be a part of every Land Rover enthusiasts library and I am certainly glad of mine. You have been privileged to bring a piece of Land Rover's history to our attention, but it is unnecessarily flawed. I'd still recommend it to everyone, albeit reservedly.
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on 2 January 2012
To any Land Rover enthusiast this could have been an interesting read, however the story is poorly constructed, with much repetition and the big story poorly presented. The book is absolutely riddled with typo's, spelling mistakes, omitted words and superfluous words. Many sections had to be re-read just to establish the intended content. I have never read such an atrocious book.
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on 16 May 2015
I found this book very difficult to read due to the vast number of mis-spellings, bad grammar, and poor sentence construction. Some of the photographs are very poorly reproduced and this is a great shame because the subject matter is an important piece of Rover history.
I cannot understand how this book got to be printed in this form with the technology that is now available, if they'd just used a spellchecker it might have been better.
Don't get me wrong, if you're into Land Rovers, then this book is a must have, it's just a distracting read, for me anyway.
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