My favourite book of 2010 so far. One of my favourite cycling reads ever. I bought this book on the strength of reviews by others on Amazon, and I am really glad I did. This era of cycling isn't all well known to we Brits, save for stories about Anquetil, perhaps. It's the era that sits between Coppi and Merckx. Even what most of us know is probably about the French scene. This book opens the lid on the personalities and machinations of what was going on in Italy at the time.
It's written in a wonderfully accessible style, full of irreverent asides from the author. What's more, much of it is written from first-hand interviews with the characters involved, many of whom are still with us. This is so much more vivid than bigraphies culled largely from press material and the work of others. The book is also a great social history of Italy in the first 20 years after WW2.
If I have any criticisms, there would be only two. There are some jarring spelling errors: eg "breaks" for brakes, and the proof-reader should have been shot. Also, the book covers the 1962 Giro in fascinating detail, and left me aching for a similar story of the 1963 event. Sadly, that gets covered in just a few pages. Maybe the author ran out of time or energy. He certainly won't have run out of material.