The Car Miscellany by Simon Heptinstall – Review
Did you know the Queen bought Prince Charles an Aston Martin Volante DB6 converted to run on bio fuel? Me either, until I started delving into The Car Miscellany, one of those gloriously addictive trivia books which you can dip into while you’re waiting for your tablet to catch up to the latest operating system it just spent an hour installing.
It turns out her majesty has a huge collection of cars. And when I say car, of course I mean the term derived from ’carrus’, the Latin word which Romans used to describe horse-drawn carriages. See what I did there? I’ve not had the book long and I’m already tortuously weaving those little nuggets of info into my review like some sub-standard Clarkson.
Not that this is exclusively about cars. The answer to that long-cherished query, ’What is the world’s fastest lawn mower?’ will be answered on page 73. There’s also a great car quote from Pete Townshend about Keith Moon; a staggering fact about the amount of new cars produced each day and… well I could go on, but I can see you’re ‘tyred’ and a tad ‘exhausted’ by these bits of info.
“Format is perfect”
Simon Heptinstall has done a fine job of collating these hugely engaging nuggets of info without resorting to any tortuous puns like this fellow petrolhead.
With a certain gift-giving season just around the corner, I can see it flying off the shelves as shoppers like ‘Nicole’ look for the perfect present for the car-loving ‘Papa’ in their lives. (Yes, that duo are mentioned in a section on famous car adverts. I would mention the name of the brand, but I’m not going to unless they want to offer me a test drive in their latest motor).
The format is perfect. Small, compact, and hardback, so you can slip it into a pocket for those long gaps of nothingness when you’re waiting for a train, or just desperate for a bit of trivia to entertain your brain during the ad breaks for your favourite TV show.
So, whether you’re desperate to think of six unlikely police cars from around the world, or just love a great book which won’t tax the brain too hard, then I’d give this a big thumbs up.
‘The Car Miscellany’ by Simon Heptinstall is published by the AA, £9.99 hardback