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80 of 86 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sloppy and inaccurate, wasting a great opportunity, 10 Mar 2011
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This review is from: No Angel: The Secret Life of Bernie Ecclestone (Hardcover)
I was really looking forward to this book, but sadly its sloppy approach to fact checking left me disappointed and feeling I couldn't trust what I was reading.

In the notes section, author Tom Bower says he had Ecclestone's cooperation and spend a lot of time with the F1 boss.

He says that led to many of those close to Ecclestone also granting interviews.

In the weeks before it was published Ecclestone withdrew is support, saying that Bower had broken the terms of their arrangement by writing about his stormy relationship with ex-wife Slavica.

This spat essentially made the book unauthorised which made me want to read it even more.

Bower does a competent enough job of telling the story of Ecclestone's early life as used car dealer who goes on to build up one of the most lucrative sports in the world.

It's when we get into the 80s/90s/00s that the really juicy tales start to emerge.

Sadly this book is seriously let down by its numerous mistakes.

There are plenty of typos.

Time after time prominent figures in Formula One have their names mis-spelt. (Theussen instead of Thiessen, Permayne instead of Permane. The list goes on...)

But the worst problem is the lack of factual accuracy. There are dozens of real howlers that would jump off the page to most serious F1 followers.

For instance, several times he talks about the Toyota F1 team having never reached the podium. Untrue. He gets the date of Senna's infamous deliberate collision with Prost at Suzuka wrong by two years. He writes about the first Grand Prix in Melbourne being in 1995 (it was a year later).

There really are too many mistakes to list( though half way through I was tempted to start and send them to this book's publisher!)

Perhaps even worse is Bower inability to describe the technical aspects of Formula One.

His attempts to articulate concepts like ground effect, active suspension and blown diffusers aren't just inept, they're plain inaccurate.

Surely the author should have engaged the help of a specialist motorsport writer to at the very least read the manuscript before it went to print. Bower could ahve easily saved himself plenty of embarrassment.

The number of inaccuracies also reflects extremely poorly on the publisher.

There are some really interesting stories from Ecclestone in this book.

But Tom Bower's apparent lack of even the most basic fact checking ability makes me question much in this book.

A real wasted opportunity.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 22 Mar 2011 22:16:12 GMT
May I ad to the reviewer, the man's name is ThEIssen: Dr. Mario Theissen. Maybe the author and the reviewer should have their spellingt checked?

In reply to an earlier post on 22 Mar 2011 23:44:52 GMT
AP says:
Indeed, and imagine how annoyed you'd feel if you'd paid a tenner for my review! :)

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Nov 2011 15:52:38 GMT
wot's "spellingt"?

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Apr 2012 08:00:17 BDT
twotoucans says:
What is "wot"?!
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