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By Any Means: His Brand New Adventure from Wicklow to Wollongong
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By Any Means: His Brand New Adventure from Wicklow to Wollongong

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  406 Ratings  ·  35 Reviews
Charley Boorman has arranged himself a new challenge: he must travel from his home town in England all the way to Sydney, Australia, and he must use any means available to reach his destination, including steam train, horse, boat, kayak, motorcycle, and tuk-tuk. Whether crossing the Black Sea, trekking through Tibet, riding an elephant in India, or hiking through the fores ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 25th 2008 by Little, Brown Book Group
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Apr 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: travel, adventure
Oh, Charley.

You say at the beginning of your second solo adventure, By Any Means, that "It struck me that this was what the trip was all about; a chance to step into other people's lives for a little while," and that was exactly what I wanted to hear. It is why I have enjoyed all your previous adventures: both your big bike trips with Ewan and your own Race to Dakar. They have always been about you making contact with people, and that is compelling stuff.

In the Long Way Round your camaraderie wi
Clare O'Beara
While I was aware of two previous books by this author, involving long distance motorbike rides, I hadn't read any. I wasn't aware that his exploits had been filmed for BBC or that he's the son of film director John Boorman. All this knowledge is taken for granted by the author. I thought he might consider that his first books could attract a motorbike-specialist readership, perhaps, whereas this 'by any mode of transport' challenge held a broader appeal. I'm at a loss to know how he paid for th ...more
Sam Still Reading
Dec 28, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Long Way Down fans, armchair adventurers (or those who can't get holidays)
Recommended to Sam Still Reading by: Long Way Down fan
I read this book in conjunction with watching the DVD of By Any Means. I was very glad that I did because sometimes the DVD episode was a bit rushed and I was wondering, 'How did they get there? Where's Russ? Who's Anne?'. The book solves all these problems.

Not high literature, but a fantastic Boys' Own adventure travelling from Ireland to Australia- by any means except a commercial flight. Charley, Russ (both familiar faces from Long Way Down/Round and Race to Dakar) and Mungo the cameraman cro
Tito Quiling, Jr.
Travel titles are some of the best companions when you're waiting in line for something, whether you're in the supermarket, processing government IDs, paying bills, or applying for a visa. While you are craning your neck every minute or so for the number that's displayed and the client called upon, there's a sense of distance with each chapter you finish and this one did it for me.

I've been trying to get hold of this series because I got hold of the first one last year and I liked it, however, t
Chris Steeden
112 forms of transport and 20473 miles. Charley Boorman is not the most literary person in the world but you cannot fail to be taken in by his sheer enthusiasm. It is quite infectious but there are so many points in this book where he pines for his family (he is away from them for over 3 months) and does that old celebrity in peril spiel that it takes the shine off this great adventure.

By Any Means begins on 12 May 2008 at his dad's, John, house in County Wicklow, Ireland. He is with friend, Rus
Jul 03, 2013 rated it liked it
By Any means lacks the human interaction and the getting inside the culture that Long Way Round and Down both did. I'm not sure if it is that Charley is fantastic at the fun side of it while Ewan is a little deeper or whether it was the fact that the focus on the transportation got in the way whereas the others were simply just on the bikes. It's funny in places and you have to love Charley's sense of adventure and little boys wide eyed spirit and determination to enjoy everything he does, but i ...more
May 01, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: travel
The writing style is probably an acquired taste (I didn't mind it too much) - more like diary entries than reading a story. This is fairly fast paced, though I wish he went into more detail in some areas that he visited instead of giving in depth descriptions of the engine of what he was driving.

I felt that the best moments he had in the book, you could really feel it through the writing, was when he was doing his UNICEF visits. That, and touching down in Australia, were the only times I didn't
A much better ghost writer (credited this time) made this trek across three continents by any means of transportation (except big commercial airplanes) enjoyable. Charley is being Charley and he is much more aware of the privileged life he leads and makes an effort in learning and interacting in a mostly non failing way with the people he meets on the way to Sydney.

The team that comes along is less interesting in a way than Ewan (who is not there but gets mentioned a few times) but I kinda like
David Brown
May 09, 2016 rated it liked it
This is a fun, folksie tale. Charlie leaves his Dad's place in Ireland to travel to Sydney by any means other than commercial airliner. He has many adventures on the way and has a few near death experiences. It is a genuine story. He had lots of support but he did do it himself and he was the only member of the team to do the whole distance. I really enjoyed the European legs and the India and Central Asian parts but I found it bogged down when he was in South East Asia. To me it was a lot of th ...more
Sep 12, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: travel
I found this book to be disappointing. Boorman goes through several countries that either still have or had horrible things happen (the Killing Fields etc) but really glosses over the situations. As he is only interacting with the select people set up before his trip, he really doesn't always interact with "the man on the street" so he does not always capture a complete picture of the country he is in. I know that politic science was not the purpose of this book (or any of them in the series) ye ...more
Nov 05, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2008, travel
Follow along with Charley Boorman on his journey from County Wicklow, Ireland to Sydney, Australia. Over the course of 3 1/2 months, Boorman travels "by any means possible". This includes time spent on the Orient Express, bus, container ship, elephant and camel. Boorman also makes a couple of stops to continue charity work with Unicef, continuing work done on previous ventures.
Oct 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I still loved this book. It did not have the same vibrancy and spirit as the other books I have read by Charley Boorman. This adventure seemed like a good thing with bad timing for Charley personally. He seemed more mournful than usual that he was away from his family, also seemed in sections of this trip that he just wasn't enjoying himself as much.
This book still had wonderful imagery, wonderful people and brilliant landscapes...somehow it still seemed flat.
Feb 08, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: armchair-travel
This book seems to exemplify the border crossings Charley refers to - there is a noticeable change part way through the book. While the first half seems to be simply going through the motions, the second half - somewhere around Asia, warms up. Whether it is because there is more purpose to the challenge, with the UNICEF runs, or whether it is because Asia is new, different, friendly and vastly different from Europe, or something I can't guess at. Either way, I was glad for the change of tone.
Ando Mando
Sep 02, 2014 rated it liked it
I ended up abandoning this book (for now) as I owned a hard back copy that was a pain in the ass to carry around. I managed over 2/3rds in the end but wasn't too bothered about finishing it as I'd seen the TV series. Overall OK, though some parts feel rushed and although generally I like Charlie, at times he comes across a bit bratty. Maybe I'll finish it one day but life's too short!
May 29, 2012 rated it liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed this one. I love a good travelogue, especially if it involves motorbikes, and have enjoyed Charley's adventures with the very gorgeous Ewan McGregor. Charley is charming and funny, with a good heart and the ability to tell a good story. A fun read with some beautiful photos to go along with it.
I wasn't expecting to enjoy this book as much as I did!

The first two that I read, had a lot of focus on Ewan, which is the person that I identified with more in the books...

But the more I got into this book, the more I appreciated what they were doing and how difficult it was.

I'm looking forward to the next installment
Jan 07, 2016 rated it liked it
I gave this book 3 stars because overall it was an interesting read but I wish it had more about the areas Charley went through and the cultures and people. Obviously the focus was transportation, which was what the trip was based on, but it was a shame to read certain parts of the book where they were merely rushing to get to next mode of transport by a deadline. Good book, okay read.
Jun 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Charley Boorman does an amazing job tell about his travel adventure from Ireland to Australia. His writing style is very personable and makes you feel like you are at pub having a drink while he tells you a story. I found the book well paced and I felt like I was part of the travel experience. I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys travel journals or travel adventures.
David P
Feb 25, 2015 rated it did not like it
Reads like a laundry list of travel, in bullet point form. It's really such a missed opportunity. "We went here. Then we stayed there. Next morning we took an X to Y..."

Very little space is allocated to the observation of the places or people encountered.
Duncan Reed
Nov 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Some very interesting people and facts / history of the places they went through. Living in Australia, I'd have liked the Aussie section to be more pages. Overall, a good read. Not as good as Long Way Round or Dakar.
Tim Heywood
Jun 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-borrowed
clearly a rushed journey! having seen the DVD, was hoping perhaps for a little more from the book, however great seeing the teams perspectives and have more insight into the locations and the joys and miseries of hectic paced travel.
Aug 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Another great road trip tale from Charley. Loved the chapter in Nepal where they met Hillary's grandson and witnessed the beginning of rNepal as a republic. Modes of transport from: elephant, tractor, dolmas, many boats and bikes. A really inspirational book.
Saturday's Child
Oct 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
I love Charley and reading about his adventures. This book was a fun "armchair" travel with lots of laughs along the way.
Mar 13, 2011 rated it it was ok
self indulgent.
Lucy Houser
Jan 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Loved it!
Jul 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
I just love Charlie. Wish Ewan went on this trip with him. The end of the book seemed a bit rushed. I just loved the idea of the trip he took.
May 09, 2012 rated it it was ok
too far
Apr 06, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Was a little weak in the writing dept. the adventure is interesting. Its No Long way Around though.
Jul 19, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: travel
Not as good as the long way books but still a really good insight to the rest of the world
Oct 12, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014
Didn't finish. It felt really repetititve, and boring.
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Charley Boorman grew up in Ireland, spending much of his childhood riding motorcross bikes. From 1998 to 2002, he ran a British motorcycle team with Ewan McGregor, winning the Superstock Series with David Jeffries.
His first film role was as Ed's Boy, Jon Voight's son in Deliverance, directed by his father John Boorman. Since then, he has appeared in Excalibur, The Emerald Forest, Hope and Glory, K
More about Charley Boorman...
“if you travel with an open mind and a good heart, and remain respectful of the country you’re in, then you should be fine.” 0 likes
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