Five Books Every Motorcyclist Should Own

Summertime in Britain is delivering its usual smorgasbord of weather events and those shiny new parts are still stuck in Dover courtesy of COVID and Brexit. You’ve exhausted every streaming platform known to civilization and scrolling through your socials is giving you an RSI. So, there’s only one thing for it - it’s time to turn to a good, ol’ fashioned book. Here are five books every motorcyclist should own.

1. Highway Code

It’s glued to our palms when we’re going through the testing route, but we’re quick to relinquish it once that all-important pass is declared. OK, so, not the sexiest of reads, but knowing your ‘shoulds’ from your ‘musts’ could transform your riding experience, rescue you from receiving an expensive ticket or, even save your life. It’s always worth revisiting Rules 83 to 88 - the ones that cover the specific expectations for those of us on two wheels - but did you know Rule 191?


2. Motorcycle Roadcraft: The Police Rider’s Handbook by Philip Coyne

I was gifted a copy of this by my DAS instructor (an ex-police rider and now IAM National Observer) and, so thumbed are the pages, I’ve almost worn it out. The bible for all blue light bikers is a true eye-opener into how to make your rides more meaningful - think efficiency rather than speed.


3. Lone Rider: The First British Woman to Motorcycle Around the World by Elspeth Beard

Whilst we’re still relatively housebound, take an opportunity to escape vicariously via the words of the inspirational Elspeth Beard. The thought of taking on a round the world trip without a support crew is challenging enough, but imagine doing this in the days before mobile phones, social media, and the internet. Beard has to be one of the bravest people on the planet. The details of the award-winning architect’s journey in the early 80s on her beautiful BMW R60/6 are mind-boggling and awe-inducing; this is the perfect piece of escapism on a dreary day.


4. Great Motorcycle Tours of Europe by Colette Coleman

And if you need some inspiration for dreamy destinations once the restrictions are lifted, look no further than the stunning pictorial guide created by veteran biker Colette Coleman. Regardless of whether you've just acquired your A licence or you’ve ridden more road miles than the Dunlop family collectively, this aesthetically pleasing publication lays out 50 of the most incredible routes through our continent. If you’re enticed by the prospect of reaching the brink of the Arctic Circle or breath-taking switchbacks through vampire territory, put your order in now.


5. Ghost Rider by Roy Thomas, Gary Friedrich, and Mike Ploog

Alright, it’s not ‘technically’ a book but, let’s face it, we all love a guilty pleasure; something we might conceal behind a broadsheet when indulging in a public setting or feign to friends that we wouldn’t be seen dead with on our shelves. Of course, it’s the original Ghost Rider, Johnny Blaze, you want to reach for (some of the early editions are now fetching a pretty price these days). Follow the supernatural stunt rider as he battles to retrieve his soul from the meddling Mephisto and transforms into the hellfire-wielding skeletal apparition atop his flaming steel horse. Cool. As.

More books we just couldn’t put down:

This information is given to you as a guide to support you in your choice of licence and RideTo has made every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information provided about motorcycle licence and training requirements. However, RideTo cannot guarantee the information is up to date, correct and complete and is therefore provided on an "as is" basis only. RideTo accepts no liability whatsoever for any loss or damage howsoever arising. We recommend that you verify the current licence and training requirements by checking the DVSA website.