After all the Valentino Rossi picture books, it's wonderful to actually have something to read. Oh yes, there are pictures - wonderful pictures - but the charm of this book is the way Oxley spins the marvellous story of this phenomenally talented young man, from his earliest days riding minimotos and karting, right up to the start of his title defence on the new Honda four-stoke MotoGP machine this year. Oxley knows his stuff, and the book features quotes from interviews with Rossi himself, his father Graziano (himself no mean bike racer) and Jeremy Burgess, the man who engineered Rossi's 500cc championship last year.
I had been following Valentino Rossi for only 3 months when I bought this book, but after finishing it, I felt as if I had known him all my life! The book tells the story of the world champion through amusing, yet strangely intense, text. Every page I would gasp at Rossi's incredible victories, both on the track and off. My heart bled as he shared sad stories of his past; and I laughed myself half to death reading of his efforts to master English swears. Take my advice: whether you like Vale or are completely obsessed with him - you'll love this book. I myself am currently reading the book again (for the 4th time) and I never grow tired of Mat Oxley's words. Every page there's one of Vale's emotions that you can't help but share, and it drags you into the book; every page there's an amusing or emotionally deep quote. This book tells the story of the greatest racer of this generation and (as I percieve it) it's an absoluely flawless piece of writing.
What a wonderful book. A brilliantly written account of the career of the greatest rider of the current era (and quite probably ever). Mat Oxley clearly knows his subject extremely well and tells Valentino Rossi's story with affection and honesty. The illustrations are brilliant, as well. All in all, a great book, whether you are interested in motorcycle racing or not.
I bought this for my other half who's a big 46 Rossi fan - good book, kept him quiet and he read it over and over. One tip - don't allow into the bedroom or your love life may have to give way to The Doctor for a while!
... and I obviously look forward the Yamaha comeback years uograde sometime in the future. Great book, great pictures and great rider, this Rossi! I am MotoGP affacionado, if you are too, get this book!