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The Bikeriders Paperback – November 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books; First Printing edition (November 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811841618
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811841610
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7.6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #696,155 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Danny Lyon is a writer and photographer whose photos of prison life, the Southern civil rights movement, and American Indian nations are legendary. He lives in the Hudson Valley.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 21 customer reviews
My husband loves this book.
D Leschke
Very impressive images that document a subculture and time in the United States, by an outstanding artist-photographer, accompanied by interesting text.
URI ZAKHEM
The Bikeriders is one of the few, if not the only, non-sensationalized books having to do with outlaw motorcycle clubs.
Cwn_Annwn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 22, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is a cool book. Great pictures and good copy although I would have liked more details. In that it was primarily written about the Mid-West, it focuses on the OUTLAWS MC and the roots of the club. It's always good to find information about other 1% clubs (since the HELLS ANGELS MC has always been the major focus of most "outlaw biker books"), however more details on other clubs would have been a plus. It does remind one that there was a time when the OUTLAWS and ANGELS could ride and party together and didn't feel a need to shoot each other on sight. It's also helps us remember that the early outlaws bikers didn't all ride Harleys. While I believe the book's a little pricey, if you're into Outlaw Bikers, this should be in your collection.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 1, 1999
Format: Hardcover
If you're interested in bikes, the biker lifestyle, or how the 'outlaw' subculture developed, you must invest in this book. Danny Lyon rode with the Chicago Outlaws in the early sixties and his photographs form a unique visual documentary about the life of the early bike rebels. The photographs are superb; the accompanying texts revealing and fascinating. If nothing else, this book illustrates the origins of the Harley-Davidson 'chopper' and the prevalence of British bikes in motorsport 40 years ago. Simply one of - if not the - finest books on motorcycle culture ever published.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Cwn_Annwn on February 15, 2004
Format: Hardcover
More a photography book than anything but also has interviews with the people who grace these pages. Chronicles the early years of the Outlaws MC, the pics in this book are amazing. The bridge being ridden across in the photo "Crossing the Ohio River" which is considered by many to be the greatest motorcycle photograph ever is about a five minute ride from where I once lived. Every time I rode across that bridge I thought about that pic. The Bikeriders is one of the few, if not the only, non-sensationalized books having to do with outlaw motorcycle clubs.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jefferson T. Packer on September 7, 2004
Format: Hardcover
An amazing collection of incredible photography from an almost undocumented era in American motorcycling. Powerful, moving, deeply authentic.

Throughout history, there have always been people who felt that they had nothing left to lose. People who had come to the conclusion that polite society was just a whitewash over something that was rotten to the core. Often, they decided this during very hard childhoods, as they found themselves betrayed by parents who were themselves just too screwed up to love their children.

Arriving at 18, mad at the world, a fast bike and a wide-open horizon look pretty good to these people; and if you don't care whether you live or die, you ride that bike fast and crazy and you grab whatever goodies life has to offer, legal or not.

I was deeply saddened and powerfully moved by the images in this book. Again and again I got the impression that these are people who are riding away from something as fast as they can, in the ultimately futile hope of outrunning whatever it is. I'd be willing to bet that the pirates of 300 years ago had a similar look in their eyes; a look of sadness and desperation, mixed with the ferocity of an incurable anger.

The photographs are works of high art, and from the perspective of a lifelong motorcyclist, it is wonderful to see choppers that were actually built by their owners rather than bought out of a catalog by people who are "squares" 5 days a week. These images remind us of why we motorcyclists got the reputation we're trying to live down; and despite my sadness for the messed up lives I see here, like everyone else I have to look at this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Andrew B. Hurvitz on October 4, 2007
Format: Paperback
Danny Lyon was a young photographer, living in Chicago in the mid-1960s, and went with a friend to a biker's outing in Wisconsin. He eventually immersed himself in this subculture of men, women and bikes, creating photos that are now an archaeological document of a lost time.

Not only are the photos provocative and fascinating, but Lyon writes with a grace and brevity that remind me of Ernest Hermingway (another Chicagoan). Here is one sample:

"Back then in Chicago, they had a lot of names for things, names that were of the Midwest and of that city, words belonging to that place and to the people who lived there. One of those words was bikeriders..."

One will see in the images that the photographer carries his 1960s intelligence and mind into the people's lives. This is not a book about biker fashions and being cool. It is a chronicle of how some rejected the standard ways in society and set up their own rules of how to live. In their freedom and wandering, the bikeriders exemplify the lost Americans who are forever in search of sensation and meaning.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jim warner on September 22, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I cant believe I had never heard of this fantastic book until now.A great variety of classic photos of old school midwestern bikers in the mid sixties....and the interviews with the chicago outlaws and their women really catch the spirit of the time also.I really loved it.I can't help but wonder what happened to some of these characters over the years
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