Decent overview of the sport of motorcycling from choosing and buying a bike to riding, to maintaining it. Not as in depth as, for instance, Proficient Motorcycling: The Ultimate Guide to Riding Well when it comes to riding advice or any other specialized publications, and somewhat simplified, but covers wide variety of topics that any beginner rider or those who are thinking about joining could benefit from learning about.One beef I have with the authors is that while they are rightfully acknowledge the current state of affairs in U.S. where motorcycle became a toy as opposed to being proper transportation alternative, yet did not even try to preach or otherwise encourage bringing this class of machines back to their rightful place as utility implement, albeit with a soul.Jessica
I've actually read quite a few Idiot's Guide type things in my day, but I'm always way too embarrassed to post them on here. I'll admit that I read this, though, because it's been really helpful. If you really know fuck all about motorcycles but are planning to start riding one, this is a pretty decent basic introductory guide. I referred to information in here when I was in the market for a bike and again when I started riding, and it's been helpful. The writing's personable and clear and the book's pretty balanced and, unlike motorcycle experts in the real world, not aggressively biased towards or against certain kinds of bikes and not spouting a bunch of macho bullshit or technical jargon and complicated explanations that don't make sense to the uninitiated. The appeal of the Idiot Guide series is that they really assume you don't know a single thing about the topic in question, which was great for me in this situation because I pretty much did not. This book is a good starting point for the abjectly ignorant, and will make you more confident about riding and also about seeking out higher-level sources of advice.Brett
Fun and informative read by one of my favorite writers.Michael
of course it's embarrassing, but it was helpful. i haven't died yet and it kept me from buying a bike that was too big.Ben
I think probably just about every guy (and maybe some gals as well) goes through a phase that we want to buy a motorcycle. That's the stage I'm going through right not and, not having ever ridden one, I figured I'd read a book on all one needs to know. The goal was that by the time I finished I would be able to say yea or nay about whether it was just a phase during which time I want to get one or if it would be a little bit more than that, wanting to make sure I wouldn't just do it on a whim. It's an informational book, so I don't think it necessary to critique the quality of the writing, but yes it was very informative and, after having finished it, at least I can say I know a little bit more about motorcycles than I did before.Jon
This book is a good introduction to motorcycling. I would characterize it as more of a "survey" than an instructional training book, though. The chapter flow is geared (ha!) toward those who have an initial interest in motorcycles, and it proceeds to lead you through some basic motorcycle education (history, terminology, styles, and mechanics) before dropping you off with some first time buyer's advice.The latter half of the book focuses on riding techniques, and I felt that this is where the real quality of the book is found. While this book is definitely not a riding manual, it does cover a large number of topics in good detail using simple, clear language. For example, there's a useful chapter that explains what to do in all sorts of bad situations, and another chapter that focuses entirely on bad weather riding situations. There are also complete chapters on dirt bike riding and track racing.There's enough information here for riders of all experience levels. For new riders, much of the information will be new, and for experienced riders, the presentation makes for a good refresher course in good riding techniques. That being said, however, I wouldn't directly recommend this book to an experienced rider, who would probably find the book a bit too shallow overall.Jon
Good intro to most everything a beginner needs to know about riding a motorcycle.Tina
As a on-again-off-again biker, with my last lapse lasting enough years to feel that I need a refresher, this book was of tremendous help in remembering old lessons - and learn a few new ones.It is, overall, well written with only the occasional complex sentence structure leaving me pondering the author's intent. There's humour, and the text is rarely boring.The book is illustrated, where needed, but not to excess.There is, however, a problem: it is US-centric, and several of the tips and rules pointed out does not apply to the rest of the world. When reading, check your local laws and conditions.Ralph L Angelo Jr.
This is a good book for anyone who is seeking to learn about motorcycling. I recommend this as well as many other books (Such as my own "Help! They're all out to get me! The motorcyclists guide to surviving the everyday world") as "Must Reads" for anyone who seeks to learn about riding a motorcycle the proper way.