Monday, September 26, 2011

Publishers Weekly Reviews The Limit

Here is Publishers Weekly review of The Limit: 

Publisher's Weekly Review of The Limit

Forget those NASCAR wimps; the European and Latin American sports scar and Formula One circuit of the 1950s is where real men raced—and died—according to this high-octane racing saga. Cannell (I. M. Pei: Mandarin of Modernism) follows two drivers for the Ferrari team: the steady American master-technician Phil Hill and a charismatic German bat-out-of-hell with the sublime name of Count Wolfgang von Trips. Driving day and night at insane speeds through cramped streets and blind curves without seat-belts or roll-bars, the two fight a war of attrition as dozens of competitors and teammates are mangled, cut in half, and burned alive in crashes. (Just watching the races was so lethal—“the hood spun loose and sliced through the crowd like a giant scythe, decapitating a row of spectators”—that the Vatican denounced them.) The author revs the narrative with greasy atmospherics and colorful figures like the Bond villainish motor mogul Enzo Ferrari—“What a pity. What about the car?” was his eulogy for a dead driver. There are also tales of womanizing, great stoicism, and a few pit stops for Nietzschean bombast: “It is danger and the insistent proximity to death that most ennobles the soul.” Cannell’s full-throttle epic leaves you breathless. Photos. (Nov. 7)

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