A great review by David McMullan the Englishman in China...
David McMullan is currently the only foreign journalist specializing in the Chinese industry. David is the International Editor of ChinaMotor Magazine and China E-Vehicle as well as writing monthly columns and periodical reports for British Dealernews, MCN, BikeSA, Motorcycle Consumer News, Motorcycle Powersports News, Kiwi Rider, Revista 400, Global Auto Supplies, Inside Motorcycles, Canadian Motorcycle Rider and many others.
Bikers are animals!
David McMullan the Englishman in China reviews
Maybe not too complimentary a comment until you realise that in Paul Jamiol’s charming
series of children’s books the bikers really are animals!
Famous motorcycle cartoonist Jamiol applies his already celebrated illustrating talents to
a series of children’s books which are designed to stimulate a child’s interest in
motorcycles and motorcycling. At first, motorcycling may seem a strange topic for a
child’s book but as the reader engages more with the animal bikers and their relationships
(certainly in the 3rd book) it becomes a lesson in cooperation and team work as well as a
promotion for leisure orientated motorcycling.
This 3 book (so far) series depicts a variety of animals as traditional American ‘bikers’
(of the non-outlaw variety). Clad in denims and leathers each different biker has their
own style of motorcycle, varying from the iconic v-twin American cruisers to classics,
customs and sports bikes. Started by club brothers Thor, Trash and Spike the ‘Bears
Motorcycle Club’ provides an introduction to the first book which also includes a biking
gorilla, rhino, elephant and eagle among other animals in its motorcycle menagerie. Each
biker is illustrated and his or her motorcycle and riding style described individually
throughout the first 2 books of the series which culminates in a 3rd book which details a
grand motorcycle tour involving all the animal bikers.
I must admit to being slightly alarmed by the lack of motorcycle helmets and safety gear
on display but relieved by Paul Jamiol’s later assertion on behalf of the animal bikers that
“remember that we are cartoon characters. When it comes to riding a motorcycle in real
life, make sure that you wear a helmet and protective clothing…that means no tank tops,
no shorts and no sneakers!”
Intricately drawn, coloured and shaded motorcycles bring the pages to life in what can be
positively described as a ‘buddy book’ that will delight kids and adults alike as it shines a
positive light on a much maligned pastime. My 2 year old daughter Maya squealed with
delight at the cartoon animals and listened attentively to their adventures.
Bikers are Animals is a truly delightful series of books and one which the ankle-biters
will love. If I have to criticise the series in any way it would be that among the abundance
of beautifully drawn v-twin cruisers, occasional customs, classics and sports-bikes is an
absolute absence of scooters and café-racers. But then again, I am English!
Thanks Dave!...and look for a café-racer in Book 5...Paul and Linda
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