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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top surf writing.
I had the slightly surreal experience of reading this deep in an African jungle while on a surf trip with 'Ed', one of the characters in the book. Very peculiar sensation to read a book describing, accurately, the chap sitting next to you.

Surf travel is one of the few ways left where you can be a genuine explorer in this connected world, looking for places and...
Published on 24 Nov 2006 by Arheddis Varkenjaab

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what I Expected
I bought this item for a holiday after reading all the great reviews it received and I don't really understand how they were all so positive. It is the first surf book I have read and the beginning seemed to just drag on about, well, nothing. A mundane storyline only lit up by a few interesting culture stories, such as the funeral in Sri Lanka. Overall I would say that...
Published on 14 Sep 2010 by jweldon


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top surf writing., 24 Nov 2006
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
I had the slightly surreal experience of reading this deep in an African jungle while on a surf trip with 'Ed', one of the characters in the book. Very peculiar sensation to read a book describing, accurately, the chap sitting next to you.

Surf travel is one of the few ways left where you can be a genuine explorer in this connected world, looking for places and waves never ridden, and Tom has captured the feel of always wondering if there is an undiscovered Kirra just around the next point, and the reality of hardcore surf travel - the hours of slogging away in a menial job just to get money for your next fix, poring over nautical maps and bathymetric charts trying to work out where might be the next undiscovered world-class wave.

There are very few genuine surf books out there by real surfers - most are by people imagining what it might be like and getting it just wrong enough to jar. This is spot on, very readable, and very enjoyable, and maybe answers the question surf travellers are always asked..'Why on earth do you want to go THERE?'

Buy it!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book for the surfer and nonsurfer alike., 21 Jun 2006
By 
Ms. A. M. Gallagher (Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
A very well written book full of fantastic charecters. Despite being a book about surf travel there is plenty for the nonsurfer for it is as much about the adventure of travel as it is the surf.

An enjoyable and inspirational read, lock up your credit card befor reading or you'll find your self on the next flight out of here.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome read - whether you surf or not !!!, 12 Jun 2006
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
Riding the Magic Carpet tells Tom's story of growing up as a Welsh surfer with a dream to go and be talented enough to surf at Jeffrey's Bay in South Africa. First he travels to various other surfing destinations at each step growing as a surfer and as a man. The writing is fluent, honest, humorous and surprisingly intelligent, offering fascinating glimpses into both the surfing potential and condition of the countries he visits. From the first page the author pulls you into his journey making Riding the Magic Carpet a very hard book to put down. Not only a book for surfers by any means. This is a tale of obsession (you can see where the Fever Pitch link comes from), and living life beyond the constraints of the conventional 9-5 lifestyle.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Skilled Writer captures something to share, 4 Jun 2006
By 
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
This is the best surfing writing I have read since I started reading surfing literature in the late sixties. Tom Anderson more graphically describes the nuances and adrenalin excitement of everything associated with the sport and art of surfing than anything else I have read.

It is a skilled book and can open up a whole new world if you've never surfed.

It's also an excellent travel ' on the road ' people book - and can be read as such. Who knows how well it will be received by the reading world at large? It could catch on big time.

Four stars not five as the graphic, no holds barred quoting of the f word in the spoken language of the characters met is not going to work well for everyone.

The ending is one of the best endings I've ever read in a book - and a mark of the writer's skill at spiking the imagination.

Besides that: Travel writing at it's best in the hands of someone who loves and knows surfing and surfers - and travellers. If you aspire to be either it's an excellent read.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, surf writing as good as it gets!!, 15 Feb 2007
By 
Peter Dalby "Wave hungry" (NW Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
I loved this book. First it was writen by a Welsh guy so (if your British) you already feel more in touch. Second, it really captures the life of a devoted surfer, searching for that perfect wave. Every step of the book, Tom (the authur) managed to capture not just what it's like to surf but also to travel to different countries, with different cultures, different climates, different cautions but not through the eyes of the travelling masses who, as Tom says, just seem to be travelling to compete with all the other travellers, who's done this who's done that blah blah blah! He told the story through the eyes of a surfer travelling around world class surfing destinations and really appreciating the places he visited and also explained a bit of the history of each destination, from the cold of Northern Scotland to the tropics. It's not just for surfers either anybody can enjoy this book, he manages to explain any surfing terms of which a none surfer might not be familiar with (it even has a glossary in the back with definitions of some of the 'surf' terms used in the book). Basically this book comes highly recommended - but be warned, if your having a bit of a wave drought, or short of cash, then this book could leave you climbing the walls for the next trip!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational stuff, 30 Aug 2007
By 
D. Yarrow "surfaddict" (Tynemouth, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
I have read a few surfin yarns in my time, and this one really stands out from the rest. It perfectly captures the obsessive devotion to surfing which many of us suffer from, the author describes his sessions vividly and believably . The title is a bit cheesy, and I approached this book with scepticism, but it was on the money from start to finish, I was unable to put it down, except to go for a surf! Motivational stuff!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great ride - from cover to cover, 22 Nov 2009
By 
T. Sharpe "EasyTom" (North Devon, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
I loved this book. It gripped me from the beginning and is written with passion, humour and insight. If you are even remotely interested in surfing you will enjoy this book, if you're obsessed with surfing you'll LOVE IT! It's all about life's journey in parallel with surfing and is a lesson in how to surf correctly - with morals, love, etiquette and an interest in the cultures which frame our surfing experiences.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You can nearly smell the sea!, 29 May 2009
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
Well I bought this as a present for a surfer wannabe and forgot to give it to him before he left so I ended up reading it. I expected it to be light, entertaining and not so well written by some dude, and I was in for a really nice surprise. It's pretty obvious that the author IS a smart guy. His writing has got style and depth and is never boring. You learn about the surfing world, but I also love his take on the countries that he visits, so accurate it made me laugh out loud quite a few times. He also sounds like a guy you want to know, nice funny and sharp.

Anyway, I had a smile on my face throughout the whole book and will read it again when I have the blues. It turned me into a surfer wouldhaveliketohavebeen and made me buy "the endless summer". After watching this classic of the classic surfer movie, I realised that the author of this book has a very similar style to the guy commenting in the movie. So after you buy this book, which you should, go and buy the movie he refers to as well!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading, 20 May 2009
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
One of the best books I have ever read. The knowledge of the author about surfing was absorbing to read (even as a non-surfer) and I felt I learned a lot without having to try. Sometimes books written by experts get bogged down with too much detail and 'education'. Not this one - it told of places and feelings with emotion and gave you information without lecturing. This book is almost impossible to do justice to in a review - just read it yourself and see how good it is! Highly recommended.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a fantastic read, 27 Mar 2007
This review is from: Riding the Magic Carpet: A Surfer's Odyssey in Search of the Perfect Wave: A Surfer's Odyssey to Find the Perfect Wave (Paperback)
This is a book i just couldnt put down.. As a surfer myself and having read countless of surf stories by other writers in surf magaines and books, I have to applaud Tom's style.. its not easy to write about the stoke and joy that surfing brings to you because its such an intricate feeling which is hard to describe but Tom nails this from the very first page.

Surfers can relate to what he writes about, for example, Jeffreys Bay was the one wave that Tom felt he should ride before he dies and made it his life mission to surf there, Mine was exactly the same but the location being G-Land (in Indonesia). So in alot of ways, the book made me think back to my previous surfing experiences and although similar in some ways the writer's, made me appreciate how much surfing has enriched my life. Needless to say i Surf alot more often now!

its a must read for any surfer, you'l be surprised by how much you can relate to it and its like reading a book about yourself at times!

10/10
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