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Motorcycle Song - A Review

This article is a review of a book called Motorcycle Song, written by Diane Siebert with illustrations by Leonard Jenkins.

I don't run across a lot of children's books about motorcycles. When this book, Motorcycle Song, was offered to me for review by Harper Collins Publishers, I was pleasantly surprised as soon as I opened it.

The book consists of 15 double-page paintings of motorcycle scenes with a verse imprinted on each painting. Here's a sample of part of one of the verses. (Note: the word "tattooed" is spelled as "tatooed" here. I'm not sure if that is done on purpose.):

    "bikers bearded and tatooed
    bikers with an attitude
    bikers young and bikers old
    bikers who don't fit the mold
    mothers
    fathers
    uncles
    aunts
    riding when they get the chance" --Diane Siebert

The book is marked as being for ages 4 to 8. That may be true but I also feel that the book has a broader appeal for motorcyclists as well and should not be limited to just introducing motorcycles to youngsters. Many of the words in the verses will not be understood by kids. They will love the images and the melodic flow of the verses but they may not grasp some of the meanings. Only a rider will. For example, the following quote may require some explanation:

    "knows his shaft drives
    knows his chains
    got 10-40 in his veins"

Both my wife and I loved this book because we understood the emotions of riding and got great pleasure from reading Siebert's verses as she translated the emotions into words. Siebert is a seasoned rider herself, having spent 10 years traveling around the United States by motorcycle.

Almost no aspect of motorcycling is left out of this small book. Join the "motorcycle guy" as he sets out riding the roads doing the things that bikers do and going the places that bikers go. Just be prepared to answer a few questions from the young people as you read to them. Any rider who has been around motorcycles for a few years should have all the answers.

Personally, I feel that all motorcyclists should read this book. It only takes five minutes to finish the book and you will want to read it more than once. If you have small kids or grandkids, read it to them and answer their questions.

We need new riders and especially we need to generate an interest in our youngsters about this great obsession of ours. This book does it.

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