It has been a while since my last appearance here on WBW. But when the opportunity to read and review Scraping Pegs appeared in my inbox, I had to jump at it. As a rider and the author of a book (don’t worry, no shameless plug for my book here), I wanted to give it a go. I’m always curious about how other authors get their thoughts down on paper.
Yes, I know that sounds really old school. But I’m old, and that is still how I get the job done. A piece of paper and a pen seem to complete the somewhat archaic circuit between my hand and brain to get the words flowing.
But enough about me- this is all about Michael Stewart and Scraping Pegs. Just one last thought, I hope that my review will do this book justice and encourage everyone to get a copy and indulge in the JOY. This is a FIVE STAR read!
Scraping Pegs By Michael Stewart
What is the result of a lifetime spent on two wheels and the desire to share the experiences, life lessons, and sometimes hard knocks with others? Scraping Pegs is one man’s story about the age-old quest, man’s desire to find control and peace. In this case, the challengers include a monster machine, gravity, and even the demons that can reside inside your own head. And the only way to conquer any of them is to face them alone, on two wheels, and with more than an average dose of passion.
Not Just A Daily Diary Or Trip Log
Scraping Pegs has everything you want in a good book: mystery, intrigue, layers of innuendo, and even a dirty little secret. But when you get right down to it, Michael Stewart is a real person, offering honest insight into the world as seen from a bike or several. Anyone who reads his work will meet the biker buds he shared his experiences with and feel like you have thrown your leg over a bike with some very cool dudes.
The fact is that bikers are a diverse group. But somehow, when it comes right down to it, the common denominator is something that we all treasure. We love the view of this world from the ragged edge of two wheels. And that is enough to keep us together like one big dysfunctional family.
A Masterful Yet Mellow Chat
From a storytelling perspective, Michael Stewart has nailed it! There is just enough detail, balanced with the right amount of broad strokes to apply to everyone who jumps on two wheels for thrills, relaxation, or just to test the laws of physics and odds of winning the lottery. And how could I not love a book by a guy who had a poster of a red Ducati in his garage when all he could afford was his It’ll-Do-Bike?
I had that same dream for 25 years. We saw a pair of red Ducs in the parking lot as we left the hotel the day after our wedding. My husband and I both stopped in awe to show them the proper respect. Then I looked at him and smiled as we got into the car and said, “SOMEDAY!” Every time I saw a red Ducati after that, I smiled and wondered if and when someday would arrive.
And a few decades later, we strolled into a local dealership. Actually, he strolled; I strutted because this was finally someday. I was about to purchase my red Ducati. BUT, they had just come out with the Attic White Silk, and it was so unique. And I had to have it, much to my husband’s dismay. But hey- all I did was change the color of my dream bike. It’s not like I went out and traded in my “someday” finally crafted Italian mechanical stallion vision on a BMW S1000RR as he did. And I knew that the irony of Artic White Silk living its life with me in the scorching desert of Phoenix, AZ, added the perfect irony to what would be a long and happy relationship.
All of that to say that Mr. Stewart has a gift for telling stories and connecting simply with words on a page, or screen depending on how techie you feel. His Ten Motorcycle Riding Rules made me stop, think, ponder, reflect, and commit them to memory. His manner of winding many other real-life thoughts into the book reminded me that this was a rider with legit experiences and road wisdom to share. But I have to admit, he had me at red Ducati…
Shared Experience And Insight
A great writer can tell a story in a manner that feels more like a shared conversation. It makes you think about yourself and experiences with a slightly new light shed on both. You read a chapter but find yourself pausing to interject your part of the conversation mentally. Maybe this is just a talent shared by riders who have a lot of time to think and ponder while enclosed in a helmet and scanning the horizon for rouge turkeys, elk, or the occasional massive stag that might appear. But Michael Stewart knows how to connect with the motorcycle mind to plant the seeds of thoughts that could someday save your hide.
By the end of this book, the first in the series, I might add, I felt like I had been engaging with a kindred spirit about much more than just motorcycles. Sure the theme is a shared interest, but this book is a look at life, not just the part spent on two wheels. I hope to share several more of these not so one-sided reflections as Michael delivers his wisdom and unique sense of humor post-impact but far from done being a good stubborn biker.
Riding can be a very solitary exploration of the world around you and the world between your ears. Hopefully, the latter is always encased in a quality helmet because it seems that riders are more a target than we might appreciate at times. But with all the craziness of the recent year’s COVID-19 restrictions, many are cut off from the riding buddies who help keep us safe and sane.
So when you can’t grab a cold beverage and talk bikes with a fellow rider, grab Scraping Pegs and enjoy a chat with Michael. And when you can climb back on your bike the next time, you will be a better, smarter, and more prepared rider thanks to the wisdom of Michael, Marta, Conrad, Bob, and the crew at the Stewart Family Help Desk.
How To Own Scraping Pegs
Get your copy of Scraping Pegs on Amazon, Apple Books, Google Play Books, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo. Paperback and hardcover versions are listed on Amazon and are orderable through most book stores, including Barnes and Noble. An Audible audiobook will be released, likely in May.