Speed Bump Himalayas by Mark Giblin – Book Review

Speed Bump Himalayas by Mark Giblin – Book Review

speed bump himalayas by mark giblin

Speed Bump Himalayas

Author – Mark Giblin
Publisher – Drifter Press
Pages – 300
Released – 17th November 2016
ISBN-13 – 978-0995421301
Format – ebook, paperback
Reviewer – Stacey
Rating – 4 Stars
I received a free copy of this book
Post contains affiliate links.


“Only go home when you’re half mad, half dead, or both.”

It’s 1987, and Mark Giblin has just discovered the perfect escape from the brawling pubs and concrete towers of Thatcher’s Britain. India: mountains, beaches, chaotic, crumbling cities and an endless scope for travelling mayhem. His mate – a young Sean Lock – joins him, but their trip starts badly.

Once Sean regains his senses after landing in steaming hot, pre-monsoon Delhi, the pair stumble through Kashmir and Nepal on a ludicrous quest for fun. But on a remote mountain track, Mark discovers something far worse than the boredom of English suburbia, and is thrown headlong into a journey few could survive.

Speed Bump Himalayas will have you in stitches and tears as Mark charts the true tale of his remarkable journey, and his fight to stay alive.

New one review witch 2017

Speed Bump Himalayas is Mark Giblin’s memoirs of his time in India during the 80’s, with part of that time spent with his old friend, Comedian Sean Lock (8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, Live at the Apollo).

I need to start this review with an honest confession. I’m not really a memoir lover nor a fan of Sean Lock. You might now be wondering why on earth I decided to read this book then. The simple truth is, something pulled me towards it. The synopsis sounded interesting, but I think it was the title that finally persuaded me. That and a desire to step out of my comfort zone.

The opening of the book looked really promising as it jumped right into the action with Mark having some ‘issues’ in India. Then the book moved on to his time back in the UK. This section didn’t hold my attention, I didn’t want to read about the UK, I wanted more from India. I began scanning the pages rather than read them. For me, the pace of the book had slowed dramatically and I started thinking that maybe I shouldn’t of gone against my initial reaction, perhaps this wasn’t a book for me after all.

However, when Mark returned to India, this time with Sean, the pace picked up and I became interested in the book once again. I will even go as far to say that I was hooked, staying that way right until the very last page. I’m so glad that I decided to carry on reading, otherwise I would of missed out on discovering some of Mark’s fascinating adventures.

What you will notice upon reading this book is how great a storyteller Mark is. He has the author equivalent of ‘The gift of the gab’. His words just flow. They drag you into the pages, and into his past. The descriptions of the scenery, food, events, etc, are all very vivid. I’ve never been to India, yet I can take a good guess at what 80’s India looked liked, all thanks to Mark.

At times this book will have you laughing out loud, at others, it may make you feel a little bit sick as there are a few gruesome scenes. Reading some of the situations that Mark found himself in I’m surprised he is still here. It is exceptionally readable and I commend Mark for putting his heart and soul into writing this book and allowing us to read about his experiences, including the good, the bad and the ugly!

Reviewed by Stacey

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About the Author

Mark Giblin

Mark Giblin is an English man living in Sydney, Australia. He writes and animates cartoons, plays guitar and banjo, writes songs and creates motorcycle and car art. This is his first book.

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13 Responses

  1. Terry Tyler says:

    I’m glad you liked this book – I talked to the author on Twitter and he seemed such a nice guy. I was disappointed that I couldn’t get on with it, so I’m glad to see that you could – it’s such an individual thing and you can never predict (or, often, explain) why one book kept you turning the pages and another didn’t.

  2. I did wonder myself when he returned to the UK whether the book was right for me, as I started tuning out whilst reading, but I persevered and I’m glad that I did.

  3. Great review. I’m with you, I’m not a memoir lover either but this does sound interesting.

  4. Randi says:

    I enjoyed your review. It’s not something I would typically read but it actually sounds interesting.

  5. Fascinating, thanks! You describe exactly why memoir and travel writing work. Read about some guy rambling around India? No thanks…. but yes please!!

  6. DJ Sakata says:

    I seem to avoid them as well, but then again, I have enjoyed a few as well.

  7. Stormi says:

    This title definitely grabbed my attention as well. Wonderful review!

  8. Zuzana says:

    Sounds good, great review

  9. Nikki says:

    The cover is certainly inviting.

  10. Tin says:

    I don’t usually read Memoirs but this one looks intersting! ? Great review!

  11. Gayathri says:

    As an Indian, your review has me intrigued. I rarely read memoirs but I did read one recently and enjoy it so I might take the plunge again soon.

  12. Megan @ Ginger Mom says:

    This sounds interesting if you are into memoirs. Great review 🙂

  13. Terri A. Wilson says:

    Memoirs are hit and miss. A lot of times it depends on the author’s personality in real life. If they are dull, no amount of ink on paper will make them interesting. It helps if they are good storytellers.