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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 30 June 2015
'Travel writer’ Tim Moore’s account of his epic attempt (as an amateur) to cycle the route of the 2000 Tour De France (weeks in advance of the actual race) provokes in this reader a mix of awe-struck admiration for the physical demands required and guffaws at the frustrations and idiosyncrasies Moore encounters along the way. Comparisons with Bill Bryson’s writing are perhaps inevitable (they share a dry sense of humour), but Moore has a distinct, frequently more profane, style – as well (of course) as confronting tasks requiring great feats of athleticism.

I read Moore’s 2014 account of his attempting the Italian equivalent (the Giro d’Italia) on a 'period bicycle’ before French Revolutions and I have a slight preference for Gironimo – I found Moore’s parallel account of the professional riders trials and tribulations in the 1914 Giro even more compelling than Moore’s Merckx, Hinault, etc –related anecdotes in French Revolutions. That said, the account here of Tom Simpson’s tragic 1967 Tour is truly gut-wrenching and Moore’s frequent references to Lance Armstrong’s Tour exploits (unsurprisingly) provide a stark contrast to the same rider’s 'achievements’ as referenced in the later book. Taken together Revolutions and Gironimo should be essential reading for anyone interested in tales of sporting achievement (and, for that matter, anyone who isn’t).
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on 2 December 2016
The Tour baffles me and it still does but that's of no consequence as Moore takes us on an I'll conceived journey of achievement and humour.

A top read.
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on 9 August 2001
As a keen cyclist (well, 50 miles a week) and a huge Tour de France fan, I was looking forward to this as a substitute for Channel 4's absent coverage of the race this year. What I didn't expect was that as well as being an informative, inspirational and - yes - moving account of a splendidly hopeless amateur's attempt to "do the Tour", French Revolutions would also turn out to be perhaps the funniest book I've ever read. My wife banned me from reading it in bed because I kept her awake with my helpless giggling, and reading it on a crowded train one morning was a BIG mistake.
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on 20 May 2011
Make no mistake, Tim Moore is a funny guy. French Revolutions had me chortling out loud on every second page or so. Even if the chortles dried up, my enjoyment levels never dipped. This is an engaging and amusing read.

According to the blurb, Tim Moore is a London-based travel writer and journalist with six or more books to his name: by his own account he was anything but a fully seasoned cyclist before he undertook the challenge that provides the backbone for this book - to cycle the route of the 2000 Tour de France.

While he may not be the most accomplished cyclist, Moore's writing certainly communicates his love of the sport of cycling and his admiration for the greats of the past. French Revolutions is dedicated to Tom Simpson. The book is full of pithy, often rude, but always kindly references to the likes of Lemond, Boardman, Roche, Anquetil, Merckx, Hinault and Indurain to name but a few of the book's passing stars. If like me, you are a plodding tourist, but with dreams, however misplaced, of future glories, French Revolutions will give you lots of inspiration and insights into racing cycling.

Obviously, this is not a book aimed at the world-tourer. Rather it is part-romp, part-homage to racing and part personal diary of a single trip. It is not where to go to find details of routes nor 'how tos'. It does have one core message for the would-be, but novice tourist: you can expect and hope to get better and fitter on the trip if you stick at it. Moore at the outset is unprepared and ill-equipted for long days and any significant inclines. By the end he is taking on some of the major cols of the route (and the occasional other cyclist) and seeing them off with them with some aplomb and a real relish. For that message alone, its worth a read, but its also funny and inspirational.
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on 29 November 2001
I really enjoyed this book - being a keen cycle tourist I was always going to enjoy it and was able to sympathise with Tim's experiences to some
extent though achieving what he did is no mean
feat as anyone who has toured on a bicycle
laden with panniers will testify. It brought back
the hunger to get on my bike an accomplish something. If I've one slight (and I mean slight)
nag it's that he delved into the history of the Tour a little too much - I enjoyed more his
diary of experiences in dodgy French hotels and
the day to day grind of the roads.
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on 13 November 2014
Book is great! But it took three weeks to arrive from within the UK!
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on 29 June 2001
Again Tim Moore set out on a ridiculous quest, to follow in the tyre treads of the Tour de France. As someone with no interest in cycling (proffesional or otherwise) I dont think I would have read this had I not known the authors previous work, but this is for anyone who wants to embarass themselves with hysterical laughter in public places. Moore is so ill prepared its frightening but throughout his struggle with mountains, French hotel proprietors and large volumes of alcohol he will give you hope that maybe even you (yes you in front of the computer) could acheive something of such great athletic magnitude, if only really wanted to. Informative on the history of the Tour de France and very, very funny. Read it.
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on 4 January 2002
This is one of the most entertaining books I've read in a long time. Moore gives an account of his journey around the Tour de France route in a most witty and comical way, his style is fresh and personal. I loved his interesting anecdotes and oddments of information about the Tour and its riders, it a is very humbling book to read as the author has such as obvious respect for the Tour riders and I can't help but totally agree. I am neither a Tour de France fanatic or a great cyclist but I still enjoyed this book immensely, and from now on shall be watching 'le tour' in a very different light. I can't recommend 'French Revolutions' enough.
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on 31 January 2015
What a fantastic book! Absolute hilarity page after page that will have you roaring with laughter. I have read a good few cycling travelogues, and most of them are along the same theme of I rode through town X, up a long hill in the rain, stopped at town Y, where I ate half the shop, here's a bit of history, then up another hill, through the rain, where I found a hotel in town Z, and a bit more history. Wash, rinse, repeat ad nauseum. This book though is very cleverly written and brings the history the characters of the TdF to life. With lines like, "the room had a wardrobe the size of a child's coffin", it's not the most PC of books, but Moore tells it like it is, warts and all, and the book is all the funnier for it.
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on 3 June 2014
A fantastic and hugely funny account of riding the Le Tour Route, whilst at the same time paying homage to the insane drive of the professionals who complete this monsters event, and also, to the equally brave who don't survive the ordeal.

A great read.
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