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On My Own Two Wheels Paperback – 24 May 2012

4.0 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Blackstaff Press Ltd (24 May 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0856408891
  • ISBN-13: 978-0856408892
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 587,371 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Malachi's stories are vivid... detailed and humorous Irish News

About the Author

Malachi O'Doherty was born in Muff, County Donegal in 1951 and grew up in west Belfast. He is a freelance writer and broadcaster based in Belfast, a contributor to BBC NI and regular writer for the Belfast Telegraph. Malachi is currently Writer in Residence at Queen's University, Belfast.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book is the story of how a sixty-year-old man, who has been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, gets back on his bike and rediscovers the joy of cycling. Malachi O'Doherty writes really well both about his own personal experiences of weight loss and fitness, but also about cycling more generally, and conveys brilliantly the joy of being back in the saddle at sixty. I loved it and would recommend it to anyone, particularly cycling enthusiasts.
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Format: Paperback
This is a great story about an ordinary guy who gets fit and healthy and learns to love cycling again. Loved how the author got himself back on his bike and all of his trips until he was finally able to cycle about 80 miles a day. I'd definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a good read and to change their life. And if you love cycling, it's a definite winner.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed this book, it covers his cycling experiences from childhood to taking it up again as part of a health and fitness regime at 60.Like Lance Armstrong it's not just about the bike, there's quite a lot about growing up and maturing in Northern Ireland, there's a real sense of place to this book, highly recommended if you like being on your own two wheels just for the fun of it.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Though it is a captivating read just for its descriptions of cycling through the Irish countryside in all weather, this book is at its best when it peels back "received" ideas about the value of cycling and tests them against the writer's own experience.

This testing the of ideal against the actual is a constant "itch that must be scratched" running through O'Doherty's writing -- it is what gives his viewpoint pieces such a recognizable force and focus -- and here he uses it to ask a simple question: "Why should I not find my own way to cycle that brings pleasure on my own terms?"

In O'Doherty's way of it, cycling is neither a sport nor or a mere mode of transport -- though he acknowledges the value of both conceptions -- but a third thing, on the face of it a simple pastime but one that can often, with the cresting of hill or the rounding of a bend, go much deeper, offering something like the experience of meditation, where the rewards don't come after the mastering of the lotus position but after the "hardening of the thighs."

In the telling of it, he reveals a philosophy that adds to his enjoyment of life, keeps his body fit, and lets his mind roam free -- all spoken with no malice to anyone else's reasons for going about on two wheels.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Really well written and enjoyable book. Sadly I don't know Ireland that well so most of the place names I didn't recognise, but still a good read nonetheless. In my 50s and overweight, this book had a lot of resonance for me.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Funny, informative. Describes the pain of uphill struggles and thrills of down hill descents, the effort needed to unclip without falling off the machine Most of all the wonderful places one sees from the seat of a bike. Thank you, thoroughly enjoyed your adventure
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved it especially as being 61 myself and sometimes questioning what the hell am I killing myself up this bloody mountain. It's got lots of humour, poetry and a great personal story. The author is a realist, what you see you get. Buy this book
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Spoiler - this book isn't really about cycling.

I bought the book thinking it was all about a man taking up cycling again at 60 to address his high blood sugar levels. I found it covered some of that (we never find out what happened to his blood sugar levels), plus a lot more besides - much more besides than I wanted. He has written several books, with a fair bit of biography in them, and for me he was a bit too keen on writing about himself, beyond the remit of the book as I'd understood it - quite a lot on his father, quite a lot on his youth, that was for me neither interesting nor what was "on the tin". Take a prolific writer, who may or may not be "a bit of a character", prone to a lot of abstract, whimsical musings that may or may not be on the topic, and a blank sheet of paper, no editor to take out the many bits that make it look as though the author is paid by the word, and let's see what happens.

I also found the level of detail of street names and routes irritating. I don't know any of the areas that he cycled, yet he repeatedly quoted street names, and even the names of roundabouts, as though the reader knew them. Such a style seems best suited to a pub reminiscence with people from his locality, not a book. Then there were several occasions when I thought he hadn't picked up much knowledge of bikes and cycling, and what he said was wrong. A man cycling at higher cadence because his legs were weak? Really? A hybrid bike has smaller wheels and fatter tyres? I know this was written by a self-confessed "tootler", cycling at first in sandals and leather jacket, and there's nothing wrong with that, but that doesn't excuse daft statements.
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