Moore, Tim. French Revolutions: Cycling the Tour de France. Read by Andrew Wincott. Prince Frederick, MD: Recorded Books, 2009.
Funny. Funny. Funny. I like that Moore’s writing is unapologetic snarky. If you are sensitive to sarcasm and foul language, stay away! This book is lightly peppered with words only a hearty rant could benefit from. Take a slightly out-of-shape, thirty something year old British guy who gets it into his head he can ride the Tour-de-France. Outfit him with a bike and ridiculous clothes and the fact he has no idea what he’s doing. Suddenly you’ve got a beyond hilarious story. Tim Moore ignores all common sense reason and sets out to bike all 2,256 miles of the race before the actual professionals take the stage. Each chapter is a different leg of the Tour and what’s great about Moore’s account (aside from his incessant bellyaching) is the historical perspective he gives along the way. He isn’t shy about providing graphic descriptions of the trials and tribulations of the male body after eight to ten hours in the saddle, either. I could open French Revolutions any page and find something hysterically funny, and more often than not, off color.
Quotes: As I said, nearly every page had something worthwhile and funny, but here are just a few of my favorites: “Sadly, Dennis was an awful boy who cheated at Monopoly and avenged yet another Belgian victory in that year’s race by running amok in our flower-beds with the big lawnmower, so I did not at the time ascribe positive attributes to the focus of his obsession” (p 5), “I didn’t know whether to be glad or sad when I looked down while grabbing for a towel and saw that the elemental rigours of the day had apparently inspired my genitals to eat themselves” (p 116), and “The blathering torrent of self-pity was by this stage a staple of our telephonic encounters, and she listened patiently, as, dispensing with respiration or punctuation, I stated that I was in a town with no hotels, that she had the hotel book, and that having cycled 94,000 miles I had forgotten how to speak French” (p 255).
As an aside, I don’t know why all my audio books are read by people with accents.
Reason read: May is Bicycle Month…so go out there and ride!
Author fact: Moore has an incredibly patient and understanding wife named Birna.
Book trivia: Moore makes mention of taking photographs while “on tour” but sadly, none of them make the book. Not even one of himself.
BookLust Twist: from Book Lust in the chapter called “Bicycling” (p 35). Simple and to the point.