Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Super soaraway giveaway: Fifty Cars that Changed the World

Fifty cars

I just shoved a copy of this beautiful book, Fifty Cars That Changed the World under lil'sis's nose. What car is this on the cover? I demanded. An E Type, moron. Bugger off, she replied, as delightful & charming as ever.

I was just testing: anyone brought up in my family knows that this is an E type jag as sure as surely as they know that Posetta Baddog nips toes. My father lives, breathes cars. I remember books about the E Type on the coffee tables in the drawing room growing up, and the gradual progression of his collection from an XJS to the XK120 now garaged at his home.

I don't have any brothers so I get to play too. I've driven most of the English circuits from Silverstone to Brands Hatch, Castle Combe to Mallory Park, and been scared rigid by Stirling Moss when he almost span me into the kitty litter at Goodwood in the 120.

My father does terrifying things in races and rallies all over the world; he & my mother drove from Islamabad to Kolkata in his TR3, and took part in the Moroccan World Cup rally. Me, I stick to England and terrifying passengers. I've never enjoyed myself more than when asked to drive a friend's teenage son around Goodwood at a track day. He was crestfallen at being driven by a girl. Esp a girly girl with blonde hair & pink lipstick.

I smiled sweetly, asked how fast he wanted to go, slid down my helmet visor and scared the living daylights out of him. There is a reason why the 120 is named so: it was the fastest production sports car of its time (1948) at 120 mph and it shifts. Ha.

So of course this book is just as exciting to me as the other books in the series, (which includes Fifty Dresses & Fifty Shoes). It has one of my first cars - the Citroen 2CV (mine was lime green and called Celeste), although the 120 and my favourite car, the Mercedes 280SL are missing.

Anyway, I highly recommend it: cars like these informed popular design and a book like this should be part of any fashion lover's collection.

Luckily for you my darlings, lovely Octopus have three copies for my readers. Usual rules apply: leave a comment and I will draw the winners using Just tell me either what your first car was or what your dream car would be. Winners will be picked next Wednesday. UK entries only this time.

Mine was my mother's old gold Renault 5 - I crashed it within five weeks. My dream car? A Mercedes 300SL Gullwing.