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4.1 out of 5 stars
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4.1 out of 5 stars
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Love or hate the man who made jeans uncool, this is a superb bit of popular writing. The selection of machines is varied enough to provide lots of interest, there is some terrific trivia in there (the weight of--biggest battleship ever--Yamato's amour on it's own was greater than that of the whole of the second biggest battleship ever) and some great arguments supporting Clarkson's choices.
My Dad will love this for Christmas, so I'm going to buy it for him. (Try saying that last line without sounding like Clarkson - go on).
Really good read.
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on 23 November 2004
Once again jeremy clarkson has given us a book that is truly amazing. his humour and wit is present throughout but it is also surprisingly informative and when you read it you just don't seem to want it to end. when i first saw what machines he had chosen for this book i didn't really see where he was coming from but after reading it i have to agree with them all, these machines do have a certain something about them that others just don't. the tails he tells of his encounters with these machines are hillarious. for example the lack of inteligence on board the US aircraft carriers and the trainspotters at doncaster station.
I would recommend this book to anyone, purely for the fact that somewhere in this book there will be something that relates to your life in some way and has changed the way we all live today.
I knew from before i opened the first page this would be a really good book and he didn't dissapoint.
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on 8 August 2005
Having previously read a few Clarkson books i knew what to expect from him. From cover to cover i read with a smile on my face, his dry witty sense of humour is never over the top, yet manages to push the boundaries of sarcasm and exaggeration. A great read, recommended.
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on 15 July 2016
I borrowed this book from my son who is an avid Clarkson fan and read it on a long and rather boring coach journey. I know that people either love or hate Jeremy Clarkson but I have no feelings either way. I do think that his books are very readable and extremely entertaining and this one is no exception. In it, he writes short essays about the machines and technology that really excite him. By and large I would agree with his choice of things but of course there are many more that could have been included. The book is packed with fascinating facts and snippets of social history that really appealed to me and I found myself reading out sections to my wife. I also laughed out loud at his dry sense of humour. There are a lot of very nice photographs that illustrate the essays. This is the type of book that you dip in and out of and it will give you loads of facts to amaze you friends with. You certainly don't have to be a petrol head to enjoy this book and I would strongly recommend it
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on 13 August 2006
I'm really not sure what this book is supposed to be - the front cover boasts about it being funny - its not (and I don't think its even meant to be). Its a series of articles that chronicles the development of flawed inventions - which is fair enough - only its inaccurate in places, a regurgitation of other Clarkson stories (who didn't already know about Clarksons love of Concorde) and a few hours reading while on holiday. To be a best seller is a real shame as its not up to the grade.
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on 5 January 2005
Clarkson bieng a blunt yorkshireman says what he thinks pity more of us didn't do the same .This is a book you can put down and pick up again and maybe read twice with just as much enjoyment as the first time, Worth putting on your shelves as a permanent feature.
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on 21 September 2006
The concept of the book is great, that of Jeremy discussing some of the greatest machines -in his eyes- to have ever been made. If you're like me and know next to nothing about "the dark side," it's not a bad book at all.

Cars are obviously Big Jem's forté, but he doesn't do a bad job on the subject of planes, trains and the rest of it either, relating the facts in a reasonably interesting manner. I found the chapter on battleships particularly engaging.

However, Clarkson lets himself down with the rushed feel to the writing, giving the impression he doesn't really care about these machines one jot. So if you're really into them, you could well be disappointed. It's only when he comes on to the subject of cars that genuine enthusiasm seems to pour out.

Jeremy could have done much better with this.
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on 13 August 2006
I'm a big fan of Clarkson, hence why I bought the book. But I can't help feeling a little cheated. As a journalist/presenter who has brought motoring journalism to the masses like no other you'd expect Clarkson's work to be written with style, and verve, but no. It's an easy read, but perhaps too easy. It's light, breezy and very 'pick-up-able', but as a result ultimately forgettable.

Having said that it's a good way to while away a boring flight, or train journey, just don't buy it and expect to be enthralled and captivated. There are a selection of eyebrow raising nuggets of info, and some good 'boy facts' which I like, but the bulk of it is, well, ordinary.

Easy to read, entertaining(ish) and good value if you can get it for a couple of quid.
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on 23 June 2006
This book is screaming off the bookshelves but I couldn't help thinking Jeremy had rushed this one off - he even hints at this himself. It's his personal choice of machines with soul - as usual he's funny, politically incorrect and you can't help agreeing with him - but having said that I felt that it lacked substance when compared to "The World According to Clarkson".

I see the other reviewers are awarding this 5 stars but this is definitely not a masterpiece - just a good read.
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on 25 February 2006
This book is fantastic, by far my favourite non-fiction book on my bookshelf. Full of mind-boggling and just sheerly amazing facts that Jeremy Clarkson manages to collect faster than a Dyson! I would say It's a great coffee table book, but if placed there you'll soon be wondering why your coffee table Isn't made by Rolls Royce, isn't comprisede mostly of Carbon fibre and isn't capable of 1000mph backwards. You'll also ask yourself why your drinking coffee when you could be out buying a spare RAF Lightning! Fantastic, just wish I could remember all the facts and funny little stories!
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