Are engines your thing? Have a look through our latest selection of books in this category to get your motor running.
Love him or loathe him, you cannot help but be sucked into the shenanigans at Clarkson's Diddly Squat Farm. An unlikely farmer, in June 2021 Clarkson's TV series Clarkson's Farm, documenting an intense, tough but funny year at his farm in the Cotswolds, debuted on Amazon Prime Video. If you read the Sunday Times, you will have already read this book as the content first appeared in his column. If not, grab your wellies and join new eco-warrior Clarkson on his voyage of discovery through the farming calendar, in the year he decided to actually do something on the sprawling thousand acre farm he bought in 2008 as he learns to become a farmer. The repetition from the columns are a little frustrating but nevertheless it's a funny book with lots of take outs. Following his attempts to become the potato king of Chipping Norton, we see the brutal reality of full-on vegetable farming, his attempt at doing a "Morgan Freeman" with bees and how the farming lifestyle becomes part of him, despite it paying him forty pence a day.
A detailed exploration into the dramatic removal of Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance chairman Carlos Ghosn in 2019. ‘Broken Alliances Inside the Rise and Fall of a Global Automotive Empire’ by Carlos Ghosn, Philippe Ries provides an incredibly detailed insight into the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance and the events which led to Ghosn becoming the most famous fugitive on the planet when her fled house arrest in Japan. I was previously vaguely aware of Carlos Ghosn, but the full details of this scandal and shock-filled story had passed me by. I found this book to be incredibly well researched and laid out in a way that someone less familiar with the story could follow. The personal insight from Carlos Ghosn added an extra dimension to the clear and comprehensive context and narrative. The mix of business, industry, politics and national identity is a heady one, with lots of parts in play and potential for pitfalls throughout this Franco-japanese alliance. Perhaps from naivety, I was surprised that the respective governments are so involved in the car manufacturing industry and even more shocked at the workings of the Japanese judicial system throughout ‘Broken Alliances’. An alliance between car manufacturers saved Nissan in the 1990s, but when the companies began to show promise, with expansion led by Ghosn from US, China and Russia to Brazil, Morocco and Thailand, it would seem that Japan wants its companies back, by any means at its disposal. An enlightening and shocking look into a modern business and motoring history that is a must read for any motoring enthusiast. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading Ambassador
Personal memoirs are complex to write and often hard to read. Some fall at the first hurdle by coming across as self obsessed, the author expecting readers to buy into a sort of self-therapy in print. Others can be too revelatory, when the author has failed to exercise any sense of self-editing and allows the urge to confess all, or explain minutiae, to get in the way of the wider story. They can, at worst, be self-indulgent tracts, of interest only to the writer. Robert James’ O’Brien’s wonderful Just One More Drive is none of those. It is a searingly honest, wonderfully written story of O’Brien’s metamorphosis from stuttering adolescent and confused pubescent in Ireland to becoming the man he hoped he could and always wanted to be. What makes this a really special account of one man’s discovery of his true self, is O’Brien’s ability to tell his story with admirable sensitivity to the people he lives with, works with and knows, but also to himself. He depicts his strong early sense of himself and his potential, and describes the frustration and self awareness of not being that person with such clarity that, from the very first chapter, you will be willing him to succeed, urging him to leap the hurdles that life has put in his path. And then there are the cars. From the Mini he owned on passing his driving test to the growling BMW beast he tames as he takes control of himself and his life, they appear throughout as avatars of his self-perceived status and mark the yardsticks of success on his path to self-discovery and self-assuredness. At its core this is a touching testimony of one man’s triumphs in his struggles, both of himself and for himself. It is, to use that much over used term, a “journey” on many levels and as you get to know him and how he thinks it will have you cheering him on, with every heart-warming page.
You love him. You trust him. YOU CAN'T ESCAPE HIM. Mia thinks she has escaped her controlling ex-husband, Rob. She's found herself a new home, a new boyfriend and a new life. But when the police arrive to tell her that Rob has been found dead on his boat, things quickly fall apart. Mia is terrified she'll be suspected, however the police are keeping all options open. They know Mia had reason to hate her ex-husband, but she's not the only one. Plenty of people wanted Rob Creavy dead, not least his new wife, Rachel. What they don't know is that Mia has a secret, one she's desperate to protect. But someone else knows. Someone with very dark secrets of their own . . . A claustrophobic, twisty psychological thriller about love, trauma and revenge - perfect for fans of, THE HOLIDAY, SOMETHING IN THE WATER and THE WOMAN IN CABIN TEN.
Jeremy Clarkson knows thereâs more to life than cars. There is, after all, a whole world out there just waiting to be discovered. So, before he gets on to torque steer and active suspension, heâd like to take a little time to consider the bigger picture. Donât worry, weâll get to the car bit in the end, but before we do, we'll learn about: The unfortunate collapse of the British empire... Why Galapagos tortoises are all mental... France reduced to the size of a small coconut... Why Jeremy Paxman and the bass guitarist of AC/DC arenât so very different... The problems of being English... And Godâs most stupid creation... Then there are the cars: Whether itâs the poxiest little runabout or an exotic, firebreathing supercar, no one else writes about cars like Jeremy. Unmoved by official claims and uninterested in press junkets, anything on four wheels is approached without fear or favour. What emerges from the ashes is not always pretty. But it is, invariably, very, very funny.
SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER. As you'll discover in his incomparable memoir, inventor, mechanic, TV presenter and walking tall as the definition of the British eccentric, Edd China sees things differently. An unstoppable enthusiast from an early age, Edd had 35 ongoing car projects while he was at university, not counting the double-decker bus he was living in. Now he's a man with not only a runaround sofa, but also a road-legal office, shed, bed and bathroom. His first car was a more conventional 1303 Texas yellow Beetle, the start of an ongoing love affair with VW, even though it got him arrested for attempted armed robbery. A human volcano of ideas and the ingenuity to make them happen, Edd is exhilarating company. Join him on his wild, wheeled adventures; see inside his engineering heroics; go behind the scenes on Wheeler Dealers. Climb aboard his giant motorised shopping trolley, and let him take you into his parallel universe of possibility.