'A skyscraper-high stack of experiences’

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by AMTB, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    The early 1990&#8217;s; a time of turmoil in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place>Africa</st1:place>. The <st1:country-region><st1:place>Congo</st1:place></st1:country-region> had been battling with one vicious power struggle after another, and <st1:country-region><st1:place>Algeria</st1:place></st1:country-region> was being torn apart. <st1:country-region><st1:place>Sudan</st1:place></st1:country-region>, one of the largest countries in <st1:place>Africa</st1:place>, was fighting a never ending war in its southern regions and <st1:country-region><st1:place>Ethiopia</st1:place></st1:country-region> had been wracked by civil war for 20 years.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Sam Manicom&#8217;s first book &#8216;Into Africa&#8217; takes you riding though this amazing continent at a time when many people would have elected to stayed at home. This highly acclaimed book is the ultimate in overlanding tales. Manicom is arrested 3 times, thrown in jail, and shot at twice. He experiences several of the events that overlanders fear the most, and you should be warned, this book has one of the most dramatic opening chapters of any travel book, ever. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Besides all the dramas that happen to Manicom as he rides from <st1:City><st1:place>Cairo</st1:place></st1:City> to <st1:City><st1:place>Cape Town</st1:place></st1:City>, he beautifully describes the landscapes, the people he meets and will take you delving into the cultures of the 14 countries he rides. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The media have said &#8216;Sam Manicom is now established as one of the foremost and most readable adventure motorcyclists currently writing about their adventures on two wheels.'
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    &#8216;Into <st1:place>Africa</st1:place>&#8217; is available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. You can also find this book from Aerostich, Waterstones, Stanfords Bookshops and if you purchase directly from Manicom&#8217;s website www.sam-manicom.com he will send you out signed and dedicated copies.
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Adventure Rider Magazine say - 'A skyscraper-high stack of experiences. Full of vivid detail of the terrain, people, food and circumstances.'<o:p></o:p>
    #1
  2. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    Do you like the idea of being immersed in the colours and cultures of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place>Asia</st1:place>? Does the thought of dealing with the myriad of challenges that can be found nowhere else on earth attract you?<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Then you&#8217;ll be intrigued by Sam Manicom&#8217;s second adventure motorcycle travel book. &#8216;Under Asian Skies&#8217; takes you across <st1:country-region><st1:place>Australia</st1:place></st1:country-region>, up into <st1:place>SE Asia</st1:place>, through <st1:country-region><st1:place>India</st1:place></st1:country-region> and <st1:country-region><st1:place>Nepal</st1:place></st1:country-region> before crossing <st1:country-region><st1:place>Iran</st1:place></st1:country-region>, <st1:country-region><st1:place>Turkey</st1:place></st1:country-region> and <st1:place>Eastern Europe</st1:place>.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    InterBike wrote: 'Sam Manicom certainly has the ability to immerse you in the trip and make you feel part of it, so much so you find yourself mentally trying to sort out his problems before he gives you the solution! But, and this is the best part, you quickly realise he is an ordinary guy living a dream, facing the unknown every-day and not some top class rider on a factory prepared machine, with riding abilities beyond the scope of most of us.
    As you read through though, you do get a sense that it is not intended to inspire, but more paint a detailed and graphic picture of people and places and try (and it succeeds) to give the reader just a sense of being there and what it is like to deal with different cultures and expectations in a factual readable and sometimes humorous way.
    Manicom has definitely got a readable writing style that makes his books just as appealing to either a general reader, as much as a traveller and or motorcyclist and that really does make them worth a read and stand out from the crowd.'
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    There&#8217;s no point in us saying more, is there?
    <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Under Asian Skies is available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. You can also find this book from Aerostich, Waterstones, Stanfords Bookshops and if you purchase directly from Manicom&#8217;s website www.sam-manicom.com he will send you out signed and dedicated copies.

    '...well worth reading and a must read for any motorhead who dreams of leaving the rat race behind in favour of the freedom of the open road and a beloved motorcycle. In short, this is one helluvan adventure!' Canyonchasers.com
    <o:p></o:p>
    #2
  3. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    An excerpt from &#8216;Into Africa&#8217;.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    Sam has just made it through war torn <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:country-region><st1:place>Ethiopia</st1:place></st1:country-region> to the border town with <st1:country-region><st1:place>Kenya</st1:place></st1:country-region>.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    'Safu drove a shiny black vintage Cadillac, which he proudly told us he'd bought from Haile Sellassie's estate when the old Emperor had died. A row of bullet holes decorated its side. Apparently he'd collected these on his last attempt to make it up the road that we'd just ridden down! He'd been stuck at the border for days. Leaning down towards us with a pleasantly theatrical manner he said, 'A bus this very day was stopped and robbed. Its occupants were raped, mutilated and then killed.' His voice swelled with drama. 'Local people are on the rampage, it's difficult to stop them, the new government is out of control in the south so the people are getting rich and married.<o:p></o:p>
    This left me none the wiser. But Safu Baba explained; one of the major local tribes had a bloodthirsty marriage rite. To earn the right to get married, a young man must present proof of his manhood. Traditionally, this was done by killing a man from a neighbouring tribe and then presenting his victims genitals to the potential bride. 'With the loss of control in the south there are a lot of marriages going on', he said. 'And they don't care what colour the marriage gift is either.' With this comment he pointedly grinned at Mike and me...'<o:p></o:p>
    #3
  4. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    69,939
    Good reading :thumb

    Please keep the book excerpts all in one thread. I've merged your second one with this one.
    #4
  5. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    Hiya, gotcha. Anything to help share the news on Sam's books is great.
    Many thanks!
    Steve
    #5
  6. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    Hoping to whet your whistle for Sam's book &#8216;Under Asian Skies&#8217;, here&#8217;s an excerpt and a taste of life on the roads in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:country-region><st1:place>India</st1:place></st1:country-region>. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    '... There didn't seem to be any system. The traffic appeared to have no rules other than 'go forward somehow'. Battered Ambassadors heaved their heavy rounded bodies forward, lumbering around potholes.

    Three-wheeler rickshaws buzzed like demented flies, darting and ducking past the other road users. Big, beaten up buses belched clouds of smoke over everyone, and bullied their way along with a rather solid superiority. Their windows were decorated with shiny pictures of the gods Ganesh and Shiva or fat, non-smiling Buddhas. They had glittery tassels hanging and swinging like some sort of freak belly dance as the bus thumped through yet another hole. <st1:City><st1:place>Garlands</st1:place></st1:City> of bright orange marigolds framed the windows, and bold signs stated warnings and religious confidence. 'Sound Horn Please' and 'God Is With Me'.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Big Tata trucks, subservient only to the almost kamikaze behaviour of the buses, arrogantly elbowed their way through the mess. Only fools, buses and cows got in their way. People-power rickshaws scuttled their sweaty way through the chaos, battling for tiny spaces. The rickshaw men looking wide-eyed at the constant mash of ever-changing threats, all of which had the power to crush them and their passengers out of existence as one would do with an irritating bug.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Cyclists were next down the food chain, with pedestrians being the lowest form of life. The latter though, still had to cross the street and did so with a combination of fatalism and pro-rugby agility as they handed off cars in their dash from one side to the other.

    The amazing thing was that it all seemed to work, until a cow got in the way that is. Cows are holy and know that they can get away with anything, so they did. They would aimlessly wander out into the snarling mess of the traffic, and the 'flow' really did somehow miraculously part for them. Perhaps in a past life Babu had been a cow, or perhaps, living on the taxi driver's edge of life, he was already dreaming of the form he would like to take in the next one. ...'<o:p></o:p>

    Attached Files:

    #6
  7. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    What do <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place>Southern Africa</st1:place>, South and <st1:place>Central America</st1:place> have in common? Non-stop adventure, great riding, stunning landscapes, dramatic disasters and more than a few near misses! <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Between all of these Sam Manicom manages to weave an enticing web of culture, customs, the funny and the sad. And in his third book &#8216;Distant Suns&#8217;, he does so in such a way that will have you ignoring the decorating you promised to do at the weekend, and somehow managing to forget that the drive needs clearing of snow. If you make the mistake of grabbing a quick read first thing in the morning, you&#8217;ll probably be late for work! <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    If you are thinking of setting off on a big adventure then you&#8217;ll be drawn by this tale. Sam and his new girlfriend Birgit Schuenemann arrive in <st1:place>Africa</st1:place> with very few miles ridden together. In fact Birgit has just a few hundred miles under her wheels, and to make life even more interesting, she&#8217;s riding a very elderly BMW road bike.
    Over the next year, the duo deal with all that <st1:place>Africa</st1:place> can throw at them, and that&#8217;s plenty, before finding one of the most unique ways to cross the <st1:place>Southern Atlantic</st1:place> to <st1:City><st1:place>Buenos Aires</st1:place></st1:City>.
    From there, the adventure through <st1:place>South America</st1:place> becomes even more gripping, with more than a few tales of the unexpected thrown into the mix. As ever, Sam is a magnet for disaster and this tale will have you grabbing the side of your chair with anticipation for the next step in the story.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Doubt us on this? Trail Bike Magazine has this to say: '...a truly involving and enthralling read. Distant Suns doesn't just document the journey, Sam also describes cultural differences, traditions and lifestyles of the various countries they cross, whilst painting a vivid picture of the terrain they cross... A really great read that'll doubtless give you itchy feet...'<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    &#8216;Distant Suns&#8217; is available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. You can also find this book from Aerostich, Waterstones, Stanfords Bookshops and if you purchase directly from Manicom&#8217;s website www.sam-manicom.com he will send you out signed and dedicated copies. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    &#8216;This is a great story which reads with the ease of a novel. Distant Suns has it all: love, good guys, bad guys, beauty, danger, history, geography and last but not least-bikes! Distant Suns is a fast, easy and thoroughly enjoyable read.'... WebBikeWorld.com<o:p></o:p>

    Attached Files:

    #7
  8. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    And here&#8217;s an excerpt to give you a taste of Sam's third travel book 'Distant Suns' &#8211; you are in the city of Mombassa on the Kenyan coast:<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    'The air is so full of scents that it's worth taking the time to just sit and breathe it in. Spices, roasting goat meat, maize cobs cooking on braziers, baking bread, the sea, fresh fish, roasting red-skinned peanuts, and coconut oil all mingle with the heavy scents of petrol and diesel engines in an atmosphere that's also filled with full-on African city noises.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Trucks, buses and taxis battle their way through frequently potholed streets that are lined with stalls or crowded with the pushing rush of humanity - which pushes and rushes at a particularly African speed. The language of the coast is Swahili - an audible sign of the city's history. It's made up of snippets of each of those former controlling cultures. 'Hakuna matata', means 'No worries' and that describes the pace at which those on foot move through the streets. In spite of the sea breeze that does manage to sneak through the old city into the new, it's too hot for anything to move at any great speed. Above the roar of ancient buses and trucks, the sounds of horns bounce off the walls to briefly dominate before being lost in the mash of life on the street.'

    Sam says, "One of the things I really love about overlanding is that your senses, all of them, come fully alive. Most motorcyclists understand that this is some thing that riding a bike will do to you, whether you are long distance travelling or not. The difference for me is that the longer I'm on the road, the more my senses sing. I think that for a travel book to work the author has to decribe all the things that make up an adventure - the sounds, smells and the way things feel are vital. I hope readers will agree with the way I've describe things in 'Distant Suns'. Birgit and I know how hugely lucky we are to have been able to make this trip, and to have survived it! Would we do it again? Absolutely! Like a shot!"
    #8
  9. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    Why on earth should you bother reading Sam Manicom’s latest book, ‘From Tortillas to Totems’? <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Well, we can BS with the best of ‘em but why don’t we let you see what the reviewers think. Before we do though, what’s it all about? T2T takes you riding across the magnificent landscapes of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:country-region><st1:place>Mexico</st1:place></st1:country-region>, the USA and <st1:country-region><st1:place>Canada</st1:place></st1:country-region>. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    There are canyons, cowboys, idyllic beaches, bears, mountains, Californian vineyards, gun-toting policemen with grudges, glaciers, exploding volcanoes, dodgy border crossings and Manicom takes you along some of the most stunning open roads that a traveller could ever wish to see. Your own back yard? We think you’ll be surprised, and the reviewers think you’ll like this book.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Adventure Bike Rider: 'Globe-trotting biker Manicom's a natural storyteller. Although this trip may sound like a standard ride through familiar country, be assured, it isn't.'<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Adventure Motorcycle says this: 'Being North American, I didn't think I'd be all that interested in this book because, you know... been there... done that, kind of thing. But a few pages in and I was ready for more…What I enjoy most about Sam's method, is his way of describing the moment. You feel it, smell it... you freeze, you sweat, and you see what's before him like you're along for the ride…’<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    WebBikeWorld comment: Now, just because an adventurer travels through interesting places doesn't necessarily mean the story will be compelling. I've read too many authors that can make a trip to the moon seem boring. But Tortillas to Totems is compelling, with a combination of diary, narrative and commentary that really makes the reader feel like you're right there in front of the campfire with Sam, listening to the tall tales as the coyotes howl in the background…’<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Motorcycle Sport and Leisure: 'This book is a brilliant account of touring on a motorcycle and the journey taken, not just physically but emotionally and spiritually too.’<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    ‘Tortillas to Totems’ is available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. You can also find this book from Aerostich, Waterstones, Stanfords Bookshops and if you purchase directly from Manicom’s website www.sam-manicom.com he will send you out signed and dedicated copies. <o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    What do Aerostich think about it? After all they chose to stock it. ‘It's all quirky fun that engages reader and author alike in unforeseen opportunities for adventure, education and self-discovery. This is the fourth motorcycle journal by Sam, who with his partner, Birgit, shares a unique outlook on riding, adventure and squeezing every last drop out of the peaks, valleys and open roads that are life. His best story yet.' <o:p></o:p>

    Attached Files:

    #9
  10. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    In this excerpt from Sam's first book 'Into Africa', we find Sam working his way down through Italy at the very beginning of the one year trip the length of Africa. He'd been riding a bike for just 10 weeks by this time, so everything that happens is a wide-eyed experience:

    <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:City><st1:place>'...Pompeii</st1:place></st1:City> was firmly on the list of places I wanted to visit on the way south, or so I thought until just before I had my first crash. I’d managed to get lost again and found myself in the crowded streets of a strange town; I don’t mind getting lost because some of the best adventures in my life have begun in a place I wasn’t supposed to be. People in fancy dress, carnival floats and excited, running children surrounded me and though it was all rather manic I had the feeling that I’d ended up getting lost in the right place. Fireworks popped adding to the people noise and filling the air with the acrid smell of gunpowder. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    Before me, two cars had also got caught in the excitement and I let them make a path through the crowds for me. Then the red Fiat indicated to go right through a gap and as he turned I sped up a bit not wanting to lose the other car. The next thing I knew was that the Fiat driver had changed his mind and was heading almost sideways towards me. Life turned into slow motion, and the inevitable happened. With a loud crunch the car collected a deep pannier shaped dent. The crush of the crowd stopped me falling over but within seconds I was faced by four arm-waving, decidedly angry men. The crowd stepped back a pace, and everyone turned to watch the new entertainment. There was no escape…'

    And later on, he's just rolled off the ferry from Greece, dealt with the chaos of Customs and Immigration, and is riding his first few miles of Egypt:

    ‘…there was just still time to make it to <st1:City><st1:place>Cairo</st1:place></st1:City> before dark; <st1:City><st1:place>Alexandria</st1:place></st1:City>’s grime held no attractions for us.<o:p></o:p>
    Grubby, long-robed, brown-faced kids ran out waving and yelling excitedly as our little convoy sped past. Irrigated fields, mud brick houses and palm trees lined the road. I couldn't help grinning as my sweat evaporated in the slipstream. I'd never ridden with other bikers before so this was fun, and tagging on as ‘tail-end-Charlie’ meant that if I did something dumb then maybe no one would notice. The quality of the road encouraged us to go faster but as the daylight began to end, common sense slowed us down. The sun was slipping lower as a flaming edged orange red ball that seemed in its dying moments to hang just above the horizon for a few bonus minutes…’

    Sam's four books, Into Africa, Under Asian Skies, Distant Suns and Tortillas to Totems are all available direct from his website as signed copies, on Amazon Kindle, Amazon UK in paperback, Waterstones, Stanfords and many other travel bookshops. In the USA you can buy paperback copies from Aerostich.
    #10
  11. AMTB

    AMTB Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    11
    Location:
    Based in the UK but open for adventure
    This next excerpt is from Sam's second book 'Under Asian Skies'. He's heading north from Bisbane in Australia and Sam is being his usual 'Disaster Magnet' self, once again...

    '...The heat of the day was intense. The sky above me was a clear blue and the grass under me, brittle and spiky. It was too early for pain to surface and though stunned, I lay thinking, &#8216;I hope the first people here aren&#8217;t smokers.&#8217; Something fast moving had flashed as a blur of blue in the side of my visor, and within an instant it had slammed into me! <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    The <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:Street><st1:address>Pacific Highway</st1:address></st1:Street> was dual carriageway and just after a set of traffic lights, I&#8217;d stopped on a hard shoulder lay-by to have a drink and check my map. My plan was that when the lights were on red, I could ease on out with no traffic to deal with. Moving out onto the road, while I was looking in my right hand mirror to check what was happening at the lights, the blue van smashed into the bike from the left. It hurled us across to the central reservation, and I ended up wedged under the bike with petrol pouring out of the carburettors onto my legs. It happened in an instant, and after a long moment of stunned silence, suddenly all my senses were working on full power. The reeking petrol was stinging my skin through my trousers. The earth and grass by my nose, heated by the <st1:time Hour="12" Minute="0">midday</st1:time> sun, smelt dry and held the tang of pollution. On the other side of the reservation cars sped past, just by my head. I could hear them and feel their draft, but trapped under the bike I couldn&#8217;t twist enough to see them or get further away...'

    Check out the website for Sam's books for more excerpts, reviews, readers feedback and much more. You can order books there, from your local bookshop, Aerostich and all his books are available in Kindle format from Amazon.
    #11