Probably one of the best books I've ever read. James knows how to use words in the right and proper form to not only tell an intellectual story, but a humorous one as well. This book takes you on a journey through basic mechanics, to tools, and through the amazing subtle humor of May. Highly recommend this book to people like myself who love to see how things work and then reassemble them. There are many books on the shelves these days but few are as well wrote and as well thought out as this one.
I was pretty excited about this book. It was the sort of thing my Dad would have liked. He was a Top Gear fan. I never really got into it, but Dad was fond of mechanical things. But the book itself is unengaging. I dip into it now and again, hoping for an epiphany. But it has yet to catch my adult interest. It might have been more alluring when I was a teenager. Now, with James May badly painted for his and his broadcast partners offensive banter on Grand Tour, I think I'll just get rid of the book. If it doesn't delight me, why am I keeping it?
I've actually listened to this three times already - not very often do I have encores so soon after my first 'read'. For someone who's never been a professional actor or narrator, James May successfully pulls off whatever I've seen (or heard) him do, whether it's test driving a £500,000 supercar or explaining how a U2 pilot's pressure suit works. I know this may sound more like hero worship than a review, but James really does have the gift of not only conveying information well, but also in a way that helps you retain what he's told you. James is like that cool teacher you had in school who was passionate about the subject matter being taught.
James' books are some of my favourite things [ignore Sound of Music reference]. He writes (and narrates) as if you and he are chatting away over a couple of pints down at his local pub. He talks TO you, as opposed to just reading out loud. And there's no question James enjoys what he does. I find it amazing that he can make the act of reassembling a record player something you'd want to hear more about. Who knew that it would be so 'riveting'! (Okay, I'll put myself in Bad Pun Corner for that one.)
If you enjoy James' ouvre of car antics, documentaries and Open University programs, you'll love this one. It's complimentary to a tv series he did of the same name, which was just as entertaining and delightful. If this book transports you to his local, the tv program will transport you to his shed.
So, the sooner you buy this audiobook, the sooner you will be debating that age-old question: is it a screw or a bolt...