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4.3 out of 5 stars
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4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 15 January 2013
This was an easy read for sure and contained some useful information that wetted my appetite for travelling down Route 66 later this year.

The trouble was, Billy Conolly (who I like as a comic), tended to waffle on about people he'd met and who I will almost certainly not meet enroute. I think he could have used the time and space talking more about the things I will see and which he didn't. It was interesting to read the waffle, but in a relatively short book I didnt think there was the space for it.

So, although the book was an interesting read and contained a few tips, there was an awful lot of the 400 pages that contained nothing that will benefit me on my drive. He was quite clearly privileged in some of the things he was able to do as well, so the trip to a medicine man or going on a turkey shoot I'd never be able to do, nor could I afford the $700 to spend a night in a cave...but he spent a lot of time talking about these. He also talked quite a lot about how miserable the weather was and how cold he was and how great trikes were and how people shouldn't drive in a convertible or a Harley etc. There was an awful, awful lot of "dead space" in the book.

I'd have prefered it if he had spent more time telling me about the route and what "I" would see and less about the things I never would. That said, I read it all and enjoyed the read, but at the end of it, I'm not sure I learnt much at all. I wish it had been longer or that he had "got on with it", which is what I was thinking at some times while reading it.
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on 17 July 2012
I have always enjoyed The Big Yun in whatever form....but...it was with reasonable expectation that I began to read this book.Billy started of well but became more pompous than usual and seem to wander about a lot without making Route 66 live,it mainly existed..
I finished it but was close a couple of times to giving it up saying "who cares"
I'm glad I read it but wouldn't rush to lend it to my friends.
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on 27 June 2013
At times i found myself laughing and then at other times, I felt like having a good row with the author. This is one of those books that starts off well, but then gets lost in itself. It offers some funny stories, some strong opinions and, some mentions that are not necessary. Verging on destroying people's livelihoods or dreams. By the time I reached half way, I was struggling to read on. Billy Connolly will tell you, that he doesn't care what people think of him. However, most people do have feelings and do care what others say.

If your going to do Route 66.. Then, whatever you do - do it your way. If you choose to drive a Cadilac or, ride a Harley..let it be your own choice. Do your dream and be free to enjoy the time of your life.
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As a fan of Billy Connolly, I was glued to the TV series so when I heard that the book accompanying it was on its way, I signed up straight away so that I could relive the ride with one of my favourite comedian's. Whilst I wasn't enamoured with the previous book this one felt more like the Billy Connolly I knew from his shows, with his witty observations, his sense of fun and of course the chance to travel one of the most famous roads in the world without having to pay astronomical holiday fares.

All in, its fun, it has a great sense of humour and for me it was chance to see the real America over the Hollywood representation/invention that is becoming taken as fact rather than the myth to which it is. Add to this some great photographs, a step by step guide and a wonderful journey all round.
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on 10 February 2013
I bought this book for an upcoming visit to USA during which we will be taking Route 66 from Chicago to St Louis. Fortunately for us about 50% of the book covers this section. After St Louis he starts to run out of things to see/do that the average Joe would also be able to see/do. At times he is a bit pompous and condescending and the last 3rd of book is very weak and ends in a bit of a whimper.
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on 20 April 2014
The series and book came out about two weeks before I drove route 66 myself. I wish I could have read the book before I started my journey as I would have liked to have used this as a reference. Its not a guide book but the characters you meet along the way are well represented and it would have given more confidence to explore on the journey and enjoy it.
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on 24 September 2011
I did this trip this year (2011) and having watched the first 2 TV episodes it doesn't reflect the great journey I had. It is a shame as I was looking forward to it but he seems to have missed out huge parts of 66 including the ghost towns, abandoned diners and the quiet desolation you can feel at some of the Routes smaller towns. Also his commentary on some aspects of American culture was not what I found, his comments on Meramec caverns showed how much he had missed the point.

Anyone thinking of the journey would be better served getting the Route 66 Travellers Guide by Tom Snyder ISBN 978-0-312-25417-9 and Images of 66 by David Wickline 978-0-615-14469-6 and a good set of road maps !

No disrespect to Mr Connolly I am sure he has to make good tele but the journey is both poignant, fun, beautiful and one of the most amazing journeys you can make by car, I don't think he has reflected that.

Perhaps you may say I have commented too quickly or shoul;dn't base a book review on the TV programme - so be it - but a lot of people will view this and my only ambition is to help people get the most out of their trip. I hope that you will and if you do buy this book buy the others as well to make sure you get the most out of Route 66.
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on 7 March 2013
This book is a real chuckle. Billy as always puts his spin on everything and makes you see it in a different light. His tales of driving along route 66 are both interesting and inspiring. Watch the TV series first then read the book. They go hand in hand.

I read this over a few days and found it very hard to put down.
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on 12 November 2011
I was so looking forward to this, having driven the route a couple of times but I can't help feeling a little underwhelmed. Billy's 'take' on American culture is, as with everything he does, highly entertaining and, to a significant degree, informative. If the remit was to produce a TV programme and book that gives a personal and subjective overview of some aspects of the 'mother road', then it hit the mark. For me, though, it was a missed opportunity to delve a little deeper into the role of Route 66 as a metaphor for America's relationship with the car and how it's a country whose commercial businesses have developed to service the automobile. His references to towns that have almost disappeared since the de-commissioning of the road were very few and far between. As another reviewer has noted, he was very wide of the mark in his comments about the Meramec Caverns and just didn't seem to 'get' what they were all about. I've always loved Billy Connolly's anarchic humour and I enjoyed his trip overall, I just wish it had been a little more thorough and nuanced in it's approach - but maybe that's another book!Billy Connolly's Route 66: The Big Yin on the Ultimate American Road Trip
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on 17 April 2012
Warm friendly witty travelogue with Billy as tour guide , loved it and felt the need to explore route 66 in future . The book has more information than the tv series and its grittier but still a magical truthful experience. Read this you wont regret it.
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