Book Reviews

A photographic tour of the historic track, its legendary races and unforgettable drivers

BOOK REVIEW—Riverside International Raceway and Pete Lyons. I simply cannot think of a better combination. As the above title and author information promise, the award-winning motorsports writer has turned his talent to weaving together the story that resides in an incredible array of photos using his unique writing style and personal perspective. In this beautiful book, Pete takes his readers on an eye-witness tour though three decades of the wide world of motorized competition that took place at the iconic Riverside International Raceway.

A revealing automotive manifesto for crisis public relations

BOOK REVIEW—Jason Vines’ “What Did Jesus Drive? – Crisis PR in Cars, Computers, and Christianity” could easily be confused with a number of fictional heroic protagonists. There are whiffs of Zelig, Horatio Alger, Balso Snell, Odysseus, Forrest Gump, and Icarus that flicker out of the pages. Published as a novel, it would be hard to believe that one man could have been involved in so many high profile, high drama, high stakes automotive (and other) industry events. I read it almost like the diary of some old time swashbuckling adventurer. But this is no novel.

Barn Finds You Wish You’d Discovered

BOOK REVIEW—Tom Cotter’s SIXTH book of barn-finds is just as vexing as the five that preceded it. “50 Shades of Rust” is another Cotter volume that regales with 94 short stories of the unearthing of some of the most interesting, delectable, desirable vehicles in some of the most unlikely of places. And that entertains and pisses me off at the same time. Why does this guy find the damn Lang Cooper? I know that Bill Warner actually found it in a junkyard, but Cotter gets to write about it and rub it in my face. Oops, I’m taking this a bit too personal, I guess. Deep breath.

Grand Prix, Baja, Rockford Files & More

BOOK REVIEW—I only met James Garner one time. Like millions of others who never even had that brief opportunity, I’ve always somehow felt that I knew this handsome, soft-spoken movie star. The fact that we all knew how much he really enjoyed automobiles in general and racing in particular along with the persona that he often portrayed on film, all added up to what seemed almost like a personal friendship with the guy. This is a guy who loved cars and the people who are part and parcel of a very well-lived motoring life.

keeps searching for cars with a heart of gold

BOOK REVIEWAnd he’s getting old. Neil Young’s new book “Deluxe Special” is subtitled “A Memoir of Life & Cars” and by gosh, it’s just that. In some 380 pages, the author reels off a cavalcade of cars he’s owned, driven, wrecked, abandoned, restored, garaged, burned to the ground, or otherwise had a direct association over his last 50+ years—from his first car in Canada and on through every odd-rod that he ever fell heels over head in love with. Along the way, the reader will note that Young’s personal and professional life intertwine with his machines.

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