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James May's 20th Century Paperback – April 28, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0340950913 ISBN-10: 0340950919

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (April 28, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340950919
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340950913
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 7.6 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,694,089 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

'James May is the best thing ever to come out of Top Gear"' -- Radio Times 'Smart, sharply written' -- Guardian 'The most loveable of the Top Gear" presenting trio ... there's a sharp and interesting mind under the corduroy. Fascinating.' -- Nottingham Evening Post --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

James May is a writer, broadcaster, and the cohost of Top Gear. His previous books include May on Motors, Notes from the Hard Shoulder, and Oz and James’s Big Wine Adventure.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Aaron Headly on March 22, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Fans of James May's work on Top Gear will not be disappointed with this collection of essays on many of the major technological advances of the twentieth century.

There are some obscure (and entertaining) details within, but serious tech geeks won't encounter much they didn't already know. As a serious tech geek myself, that didn't keep me from enjoying it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Philippa on May 2, 2008
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The 20th century summed up as a series of important inventions and developments. It's an interesting and entertaining read, and May writes with wit and charm (full disclosure, I have a bit of a crush going here, so I could be slightly biased! And who knows, maybe the coauthor wrote the best bits). It's not meant to be the definitive work on the century, I imagine, but it's a great look at where lots of our important things came from, and where they went. You'll come away knowing a little more about any number of things, from motorcycles to guitars (and the scourge of the ukelele). One or two of the chapters drag a bit with the recital of purely technical information, but overall, it's pretty engaging.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By K. Alphs on May 22, 2009
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"James May's Magnificent Machines: How Men In Sheds Changed Our Lives" is authored by the co-host of the popular BBC television show "Top Gear" and award winning British journalist, James May. May takes the reader on a journey through the 20th Century to explore how "men in sheds" came to pioneer technology in the fields of aviation, cars, television, computers, space travel, architechture, electricity, the horseless carriage, radio, music, motorbikes, fashion, tanks, espionage, and health care. The author also includes "a section for anoraks" and "further reading" which contain facts and further resources for exploring the technological wonders of the 20th Century.
May's book is a great introduction to the study of "men in sheds" and how their inventions definitely changed our lives and shaped the world in which we live.
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By Marina Simmons on May 31, 2014
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After I bought this book I really second guessed myself but I actually learned quite a lot. It was easy to read and had James wonderful humor.
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Gained a lot of fascinating information on many subjects from reading this book. I've read it twice and plan on reading more of May's books.
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By Jerome Fink on November 19, 2013
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James's writing is OK, but a bit slow. I guess thats why they call him Capt. Slow. Jeremy and Richard write much funnier reads
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By Clint on October 29, 2013
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If you like history this is a great book packed with facts, told in May's style well referenced. Great reading
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By Jmsblckhll on March 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very interesting work if you enjoy scientific history. Those not familiar with James May's dry sense of humor might not be as entertained.
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