Media Mash: Motorcycle book reviews


Emily-Jane Brain checks out stuff to fill the gaps in your bookshelf and places to while away your time online

TITLE: Mondo Enduro

AUTHOR: Edited by Austin Vince

In 1995, seven old-school chums with a shared passion for motorcycling set out on a ­ fleet of DR350s to seek adventure and relish the feeling of being young, free and on two wheels. Among them was teacher Austin Vince (he of retro overall fame), Austin’s older brother Gerald, journalist Chas, twin brother Bill, high financier Mark, accountant Clive and aerospace software guru Nick. The contingent planned a route from London to Magadan, over some of the toughest terrain imaginable, unsupported and in some respects underprepared, and Mondo Enduro is the compilation of their travel diaries as and when events happened. If you love the readiness of reading online blogs, Mondo’s narrative style is sure to appeal, and although it’s a hefty volume, the short chapters, extracts, maps and photos make it easy to digest. A recklessly entertaining read. £20.00

TITLE: Triumph Bonneville: Portrait of a Legend

AUTHOR: James Mann and Mick Duckworth

If you’ve a soft spot for British nostalgia and bikes the way they used to be, this glossy coffee table tome is an absolute delight. Indulgent full-page colour photos show off every model Bonneville to its highly polished best, with close-up details lovingly snapped and spec boxes showing each bike’s attributes, it’s a ‘did you know?’ trivia-lover’s dream. At 30 quid it’s not cheap, though, and you’ll want to keep it finger-print free and in mint condition – just like the bikes inside. Probably not one to be lending out to your mates… or leaving too near the coffee table for that matter. £30,

TITLE: Heading East

AUTHOR: Andreas Hülsmann

Remember last issue’s epic trip down the Pamir Highway? Heading East is writer Hülsmann’s photographic diary of that trip, and boy can that bloke take a photo! If you’re planning a ride through the ‘Stans, this is just the thing to whet your appetite for big mountain terrain and wide open spaces, and if you’re not sold, the smiling faces of friendly locals are bound to sway you. The book is published with both German and English wording (interesting if you’re bi-lingual) but as the copy and captions are meant to complement the pictures which lead the story, the dual language doesn’t hinder reader enjoyment. Another hardback and a bit of an odd shape, this is an ideal luxury loo read. £29.27,

TITLE: Roads with a View: England’s greatest views and how to ­find them

AUTHOR: David Core­field

Good old RAC! This book does exactly what it says on the tin, and now that the biking weather’s well and truly on its way, what better time to set aside the odd Sunday for a backyard bimble? This book is a beautiful idiot’s guide to Blighty’s best roads, with huge colour photos and fact boxes on each of its featured destinations; there are even suggestions as to where to stop for lunch. It’s worth baring in mind that Roads with a View is geared more towards car drivers, but it’s definitely worth a look for scouting out areas of England which may as yet be unknown to you. Then it’s just a case of nipping online to suss out the best bits for bikes. A good source of ideas for planning weekend ride outs, we reckon. £19.99 /


Get your waterproofs out! This online county-by-county guide to some of the wettest roads in the UK has a total of 1965 fords – 1867 of them with accompanying pictures and directions, as well as accounts from riders who’ve been there, done that and got the soggy socks to prove it. There are also listings for 41 fords abroad. Don’t forget to upload directions and pics of your favourite local wet spots, too!