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She's a Bad Motorcycle: Writers on Riding Paperback – Dec 19 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (Dec 19 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560253177
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560253174
  • Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 15.1 x 22.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 381 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #557,903 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
My favorites chapters in this anthology were Ted Simon's from Jupiter's Travels, Robert Fulton's from One Man Caravan, and of course, Robert Pirsig's from Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (which is a great read as well as a great ride). Eric Burdon's piece on Steve McQueen wasn't half bad either.
But there's far too much chaff with this wheat. About half of the chapters in this collection waste space on Hell's Angels and related gangery, much of which is bad fiction, dull fact, or has nothing to do with motorcycles. The lone standout is Sonny Barger's chapter which really is classic.
In the end, I think this book's value is twofold -- 1) you get perspective on the variety of riders, their perspectives, and their writing styles, and 2) it suggests further sources of motorcycle literature. But because the caliber of contributions perhaps befittingly matches the lack of sophistication or maturity of many bikers, I suggest that you borrow a copy (or buy used) and then do a lot of skimming.
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Format: Paperback
I make a point of bringing a motorcycle book to read when my husband and I go on our annual bike tour. This year, I brought Bad Motorcycle. It's an interesting and eclectic collection of stories, essays and a poem (yes, it sucked. More on that later).
The writing styles and quality are as varied and diverse as motorcycle riders and the bikes we ride. Its not surprising that the book starts with a piece from Melissa Holbrook-Pierson's The Perfect Vehicle. She is able to describe the indescribable nuances about riding in a fluid, poetic and natural style. If you love motorcycles, do yourself a favor and buy The Perfect Vehicle. It's not without its flaws, but so well-written, the flaws are easy to overlook (which is more than I can say for a lot of writers.)
After reading a segment from Robert Fulton's One Man Caravan, I ordered the book because I couldn't get enough of his tales of derring-do during the 1930s.
For those who aren't into motorcycles, there are basically two types of motorcyclists. Harley-Davidsons and everyone else. I would fall under the 'everyone else' category. To me, motorcycling is like religion. Not everyone is into the same thing, but I totally respect people's choices. It's what makes the world go 'round. However, not being of the Harley faith, I found the piece by Hell's Angel pioneer, Sonny Barger to be OUTSTANDING. In the too short chapter of the book, Sonny bares a surprising amount of his soul with funny, insightful and intelligent writing. It has given me a new perspective on Harley riders.
Buried in the back of the book is a piece by Rachel Kushner which briefly chronicles her adventures racing in Baja. I was so intrigued, as soon as I finished it, I reread it.
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By A Customer on Jan. 7 2004
Format: Paperback
What a crock!Either this editor doesn't ride or he just doesn't get it.This compilation of stories about "riding" misses the mark...that is,unless your idea of riding is endless accounts of "outlaw bikers" lifestyles and detailed accounts of their continuous partying.The few stories contained which actually have a theme about the sensations and joys of undertaking a trip on two wheels could almost be printed on the jacket.Get a clue,or better yet,get Peter Egan's "Leanings".
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