So, my friend Rachel is a huge Tour de France fan, and I asked her which day of the 21 stages would be the best to cover. She said today's the day. Today's they're climbing Alpe-d'Huez. Twice. It's a tough stage, and will be a great one to watch.
Tour de France 100: A Photographic History of the World's Greatest Race by Richard Moore. This is the 100th Tour de France (it started in 1903, but WWI and WWII interrupted) and this book goes covers all of them.
Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom (With a Few Flat Tires Along the Way) by Sue Macy. Not just a look at bicycle history and how bicycle-mad America was in the late 19th century, but also an in-depth look at how the bicycle helped the cause of women’s rights.
Bicycling: A Reintroduction: A Visual Guide to Choosing, Repairing, Maintaining & Operating a Bicycle by Karen Ruth. This guide covers everything from rules of the road to how to choose a bike, from maintenance to safety.
Shift by Jennifer Bradbury. Win and Chris are best friends who decide to ride their bikes from West Virgina to Washington State before starting college. But, they get in a fight along the way and split up. Chris comes home, starts college, and assumes Win did the same-- but Win's disappeared and as they search for him, it turns out Win was hiding some very big secrets.
Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen. Auden is spending the summer with her father and his new family. An insomniac, she finally learns to ride a bike and spends her sleepless nights riding around with Eli-- a boy who has his own issues.
Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Levitt. When her father gets sick, Payton's life begins to change. She takes up cycling and starts focusing on something she's spent years staring at--the back of Sean Griswold's head, who sits in front of her in class.
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. After crash landing in Nazi-control France, a British spy is arrested and interrogated by the Gestapo. She is weak, and tells them what she knows, hoping it will buy her time, her life, or at least a quick execution instead of being shipped to Ravensbrück. But in her story, she tells a heartbreaking story of her best friend Maddie, the pilot she left in the burning plane. This really isn't about biking, but a bike trip the two women take early in their friendship is rather crucial in many ways.
My Most Excellent Year: A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins, and Fenway Park by Steve Kluger. Told in three voices-- TC, his best friend Augie, and the new girl, Ale. They tell the story of their freshman year, of Mary Poppins, and the Red Sox, as they and their family find love and acceptance. While not about riding bikes, the scene where Augie tells Ale about why TC didn't ride a bike for years makes me tear up just thinking about it.
What are your favorite books with bikes? Are you watching Le Tour today?
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