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Grammath

One Hit Wonderland

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After winning his bets that he couldn't circumnavigate Ireland with a fridge in tow or play all of the Moldovan national football team at tennis, in "One Hit Wonderland" Tony Hawks, a man who has built a career out of appearing on Radio 4 panel games and accepting another bizarre challenges, accepts a bet that he can have a hit single anywhere in the world within two years.

 

Hawks does have a track record here, having reached number 4 in the UK with "Stutter Rap", under the guise of Morris Minor and the Majors. He travels to Nashville (Music City USA), the Sudan, Holland and Romania in his quest, but things only really begin to take off when he meets 87 year old Norman Wisdom, a superstar in Albania....

 

Unlike obvious inspiration Bill Bryson, this book places more emphasis on the humour than the travel; you won't find out much about the cultures that Hawks visits during his quest. However, as a celebration of British eccentricity in out of the way places, this is up to the standards of the previous two books, with several laugh out loud moments. Unpretentious, amiable fun.

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I have only read the Ireland with fridge book of Hawks', and agree that he is much more a comic storyteller than a travel writer. And yes, he has done a great job of cornering the market on eccentric travel narrative topics -- his choices of themes/challenges are truly inspired. But if it's quality TRAVEL writing you're after, you'd be better off elsewhere, in my opinion.

 

ron

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