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88 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No really, it IS all about the bike!, 30 July 2010
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This review is from: It's All About the Bike: The Pursuit of Happiness On Two Wheels (Hardcover)
I purchased this after having watched the TV documentary of the same name and i was not let down!
I had some initial reservations about watching the programme, city guy moves to wales to rediscover himself and finds cycling in the process, it has british movie industry written all over it! The lifelong passion for the bike that was revealed however left me once again chiding my own preconceptions, and yet another inward promise to be more open minded and less reactionary!
Obviously the book fleshes out the broad strokes painted on the tv, but the passion and almost reverence that comes across is a joy to read. Clever writing prevents the book going the way of a sentimental eulogy to craftsmen passed, and instead reveals a soaring demand for the bespoke bike, albeit for a very different user. As a cyclist myself i was particularly gratified to learn that the principal aim of the author attaining his dream bike was to ride it all the time, celebrating it through use, and not just having it as another expensive accessory, (penn himself compares the skill and artistry of a framebuilder to that of a watchmaker or tailor)thus needing it to be absolutely perfect in every detail. Any jealousy at the author having the time and money to be able to trek globally in order to acquire the components for his dream bike are soon forgotten thanks to the total passion that is revealed for every detail of the bike through very skilled writing. It's always gratifying to connect with a fellow bikie, even if through the pages of book, and i was very pleased to see that i already own most of his selected reading!
If you like cycling, buy this book.
If you like travel, buy this book.
If you want a dollop of inspiration to get you back on your own bike, buy this book.
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Initial post: 6 Aug 2010 20:38:51 BDT
"It's ALL about the bike" charmed me. It is Mr Ben goes cycling and without ever feeling that your legs or lungs will let you down. The stories flow into each other smoother than thsmoothest of gear changes and the landscape is varied and glorious. And it is compelling too - or should I say that I read it "on the rivet"? now that I know what it means. Bravo Rob Penn!
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