Top Muscle: The Rarest Cars from America's Fastest Decade Hardcover – May 15 2014
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"(Leffingwell) is able to give the vehicles a sort of inner radiance that invites readers to treat the images as works of art. Yeah, I know that sounds a little pretentious, but remember, these are classic muscle cars that wear some of the most expressive and extreme designs ever seen on the road and Leffingwell's approach to lighting brings out every dramatic curve and angle. Finally, while the big deal here is no doubt the photography, Holmstrom's copy is very engaging, and while his enthusiasm for the cars is obvious, he doesn't gush over them. He also does a good job at providing background and context for the original muscle-car era, right down to the inclusion of vintage print ads." - AutoSavant.com
"When Top Muscle says it focuses on the rarest of the rare, it really means it. Top Muscle follows a simple and undeniably effective formula." - AutoWeek
"If you appreciate all the brands that contributed to America's magic muscle car era, then this is the book for you. They really were works of art, much like this book." - Racer.com / Sports Car Club of America
"Car enthusiasts today have access to an ever-broadening selection of muscle car books. This particular work was written by Darwin Holmstrom to highlight some of the most sought-after cars of the era. The cars selected are often intriguing, not simply because they have rare drivetrains, but because of particular attributes or histories. Randy Leffingwell created alluring images using unconventional light "painting" techniques. The results appear as painstakingly studio-lit works, when they were actually taken in the collection's storage facility. It's attractive and interesting, and includes a number of cars we've not seen previously. We just can't help wanting to know more about them." - Hemmings Muscle Machines
About the Author
Darwin Holmstrom has written, co-written, or contributed to over thirty books on subjects ranging from motorcycles and muscle cars to Gibson Les Paul guitars, including Indian Motorcycles, GTO: Fifty Years, Let's Ride: Sonny Barger's Guide to Motorcyclying,Top Muscle: The Rarest Cars from America's Fastest Decade, BMW Motorcycles, The Harley-Davidson Motor Co. Archive Collection, and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Motorcycles. Darwin is the senior editor for Motorbooks. Prior to that he served as Midwestern editor for Motorcyclist magazine.
Randy Leffingwell wrote his first book, American Muscle, in 1989 while still on staff at the Los Angeles Times. Since then, he has authored another 47 titles for Motorbooks and its sister publisher Voyageur Press, including Porsche 911 50 Years, Corvette 60 Years, and The Art of the Corvette. Leffingwell is considered one of the top Porsche historians working today, and he enjoys a close working relationship with Porsche AG. He lives in southern California, about 100 miles north of Los Angeles.
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Readers will receive significant insight into the world of autos, especially during a time when "the classical muscle car era began with John Z. Delorean". This man took charge of GM's Pontiac line and encouraged a "creative interpretation" of the company's rules. The result: powerful and beautiful cars!
This book offers beautiful photos of the ultimate car lover's collection, including the world's first Chevelle Z16 and the only 1969 Mach I Mustang with a sunroof. When will you get another chance to see those?
Readers will find comfort comparing this book to other picture books like Holmstroms's other book GTO 50 Years: The Original Muscle Car and car history books like Allan Girdler's American Road Race Specials, 1934-70: Glory Days of Homebuilt Racers. Of course, each of these books has its own specific area. If you are more interested in a general approach to muscle cars, "Top Muscle" is a great choice.
Holmstrom and Leffingwell present the reader with brilliant studio-lit photos. Each photo comes with a wonderful story, but the result is a quick read that will leave you wanting to learn more.