…a unique and wonderful adventure.
Under Asian Skies delivers a truly entertaining account and perspective on international travel by motorcycle. This book is an excellent find for the would be global riders and travellers by other means alike.
Motorcycle Explorer Magazine
Manicom not only describes what he sees, but makes an attempt to understand it, what emerges is a narrative of a world far different from the one seen on the evening news. The World according to Sam Manicom is colorful, complex and beautiful. Like his book, it is a multidimensional and rich tapestry, woven together by the experiences, joys, sorrows and extraordinary adventures of ordinary folk.
We…are treated to what must be the most bizarre and hilarious entry into a country anyone has ever experienced! A stand-alone book, you don’t have to have read ‘Into Africa’ to enjoy this sequel. There are enough brief mentions of Sam’s time in Africa to give you the gist without feeling repetitive to those who have read the authors first book. But if you enjoy reading this book you will love ‘Into Africa’. Sam’s enthusiasm for biking, for exploring and for meeting new people jump off the page and even a serious back injury or nearly dying of Dengue Fever can’t stop him. All these challenges seem to urge him on and doesn’t dent the author’s endless fascination for the world one bit.
Accessible and well written, this will prod anyone with a bike license to take off and do something amazing
Adventure Travel Magazine
An engaging story of adventure that allows one to escape into the world through Manicom’s words.
Adventure Rider Radio
Sam has the skills of the story teller and this book easily transports you into three years of journey across Asia. He manages to bring the sounds, scents and heat of Asia to life without wordy overkill and he has obviously researched his historical facts carefully. … In places Under Asian Skies is sad, and in others it’s outrageously funny – look out for his battle with the Sydney port officials and the bus ride in Indonesia. All in all this is a really good read, whether you have been across Asia, or are planning a trip.
This is true travelling on the cheap and not your everyday story.
A brilliant book that should be read by any biker or adventure lover.
Why buy it? Inspiration!
Sam Manicom certainly has the ability to immerse you in the trip and make you feel part of it, so much so you find yourself mentally trying to sort out his problems before he gives you the solution! But, and this is the best part, you quickly realise he is an ordinary guy living a dream, facing the unknown every-day and not some top class rider on a factory prepared machine, with riding abilities beyond the scope of most of us. As you read through though, you do get a sense that it is not intended to inspire, but more paint a detailed and graphic picture of people and places and try (and it succeeds) to give the reader just a sense of being there and what it is like to deal with different cultures and expectations in a factual readable and sometimes humorous way.
Manicom has definitely got a readable writing style that makes his books just as appealing to either a general reader, as much as a traveller and or motorcyclist and that really does make them worth a read and stand out from the crowd.
There are a great many lessons that can be taken from Manicom’s story, but the most heartening for us all is that to be a motorcycle traveller, you do not need to be an experienced rider. All it takes is a bike and a desire for something out of the ordinary. Manicom emphasizes that you can do what he did, that the life experiences he has had are not the preserve of the wealthy, or those with specialist skills. If you have the will, and are able to step from your comfort zone, the world that awaits you can be enjoyed uniquely on a bike. It is clear from his story that this is a life to which he is hopelessly addicted.
Generally I am a fast reader…. This book stopped that for me and became bedtime reading… . There were many occasions when I felt as if I as there with Sam; the descriptions of what he saw gave you the feeling that you were there too. One of the great differences with Sam’s travels are that they are so different from the well known and publicised trips of Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman. My best tribute to Sam is that this is the best book on motorcycle travel that I have read since ‘One Man Caravan’ by Robert Fulton who rode around the world in 1933/4.
BMW Club Journal
…a great read.
TBM Trail Bike Magazine
Sam’s ability to write in a compelling and funny (style) makes this book a compelling read. His ability to captivate the audience makes this book very hard to put down, I found myself reading it at every opportunity until I finished. I then had to read his additional titles, Into Africa and Distant Suns. Recommended.
Such stories defy packaging and imagination draws the reader into the story more effectively than any video can.
Selling-up and quitting your job to see where the road takes you, working your way across six continents over five years takes some self-belief and trust in the world. So I wasn’t entirely surprised to hear that last year this intrepid soul had embarked on another adventure, once again throwing-in the security and comfort of a good job, this time to concentrate on writing and publishing. He deserves to succeed, not least so we get to read a third book from him.
The Road Magazine
…the thing I most enjoyed about this book was the feeling that I was there with him as he went through everything. I’ve travelled a bit myself in this part of the world, and the feeling of the hustle, the smells, the people, the smiles the bartering, Sam’s account brought it all back to me. The fact he did it on a bike only gives me hope that one day I too could be riding the road from Quetta to Taftan myself.
…well worth reading and a must read for any motorhead who dreams of leaving the rat race behind in favor of the freedom of the open road and a beloved motorcycle. In short, this is one helluvan adventure!
…But as much as I can tell you what not to do in a motorcycle travel book — or any travel book, for that matter — it’s much harder to put my finger on exactly what should be done. There’s a subtle difference; a smoky line that’s crossed somewhere that turns a boring diary into an edge-of-the-chair adventure yarn, and Manicom has done it in these two books (Under Asian Skies and Into Africa). If pressed, I’d say that to be successful, a travel book surely must go beyond a simple narrative to imbue the reader with the history, the culture and the mood of the place in addition to its sights, sounds and smells. Yet the author has only words to convey all of this — a most difficult task. Fantastic book, a must have.
… this fascinating adventure story by a man well and truly bitten by the world motorcycle travel bug… What sets this book apart is the detail in the narrative… It’s the positive human relationships that make this story, from simple welcomes along the road to meeting life long friends… This book will undoubtedly inspire some to follow in his tracks and is essential reading for anyone contemplating such a journey…
The Rider’s Digest
Sam’s acute observations on everything from human behaviour to locations visited, transport the reader effortlessly to places another world away. Prolonged stays at locations along his chosen routes allowed him to accumulate much knowledge and he doesn’t hesitate to pass that on. While his first book ‘Into Africa’ was detailed I felt his confidence shine through even more with this second effort.
After the success of reading Sam Manicom’s ‘Into Africa’ I set out to read his new book ‘Under Asian Skies’ with great expectations. I have to say I really wasn’t disappointed at all.
It was the same great style as last time, but possibly slightly richer, as his writing style had developed from his last book. The colour photo’s added an excellent dimension…
It gave another excellent insight in to the wonderful people that Sam met along his journey, the high’s and low’s of the journey, illnesses, crashes and with a bit of romance thrown in for good measure! I found this book even more engaging than the last and read it through end to end in about 5 days flat!
Honda XRV Trail Riders Club
‘Under Asian Skies’ is the sequel to his first book ‘Into Africa’ and is similarly packed with adventure… and once again those adventures demand that Sam’s Guardian Angel is on hand to work overtime.
BMW Owners News – Northern America