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Download Around the World on Two Wheels: Annie Londonderry's Extraordinary Ride Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Around the World on Two Wheels: Annie Londonderrys Extraordinary Ride Audiobook, by Peter Zheutlin Click for printable size audiobook cover
2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 2.00 (110 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Peter Zheutlin Narrator: Barrett Whitener Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2007 ISBN: 9781400175475
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Until 1894 there were no female sport stars, no product endorsement deals, and no young mothers with the chutzpah to circle the globe on a bicycle. Annie Kopchovsky changed all of that. Annie was a Jewish immigrant and working mother of three living in a Boston tenement with her husband, a peddler. This was as close to the American dream as she was likely to get-until she became part of what one newspaper called "one of the most novel wagers ever made": a high-stakes bet between two wealthy merchants that a woman could not ride around the world on a bicycle, as Thomas Stevens had a few years before. Annie rose to the challenge, pledging to finish her fifteen-month trip with a staggering $5,000 earned by selling advertising space on her bike and her clothing, making personal appearances in stores and at bicycle races, and lecturing about her adventures along the way. When the Londonderry Lithia Springs Water Company of New Hampshire offered to become the first of her many sponsors, Annie Kopchovsky became Annie Londonderry, and a legend was born. So began one of the greatest escapades-and publicity stunts-of the Victorian Age. In this marvelously written book, author Peter Zheutlin vividly recounts the story of the audacious woman who turned every Victorian notion of female propriety on its ear. When Annie left Boston in June 1894, she was a brash young lady with a 42-pound bicycle, a revolver, a change of underwear, and a dream of freedom. The epic journey that followed-from a frigid ride through France to an encounter with outlaw John Wesley Hardin in El Paso-took the connection between athletics and commercialism to dizzying new heights and turned Annie into a symbol of sexual equality. A beguiling true story of a bold spirit who reinvented herself against all odds, Around the World on Two Wheels blends social history and high adventure into an unforgettable portrait of courage, imagination, and tenacity. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Peter Zheutlin’s thoroughly researched account will make you wish you’d been around to catch a glimpse of the extraordinary woman as she went wheeling by.”

    Bill Littlefield, NPR

  • “Well researched and written by a great-nephew of Annie’s, this reclaimed true story illuminates family life, journalism, advertising, and recreation of that transitional era. As for Annie, she was a remarkable woman and well worth getting to know.”

    Booklist

  • “A pleasant, affectionate portrait of a free spirit who pedaled her way out of Victorian constraints.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “A wonderful telling of one of the most intriguing, offbeat, and until now, lost chapters in the history of cycling.”

    David Herlihy, author of Bicycle: The History

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jacqueline | 2/16/2014

    " I am clearly on a bicycle kick. This entertaining family memoir is about "Annie Londonderry" who left a husband and three children in Boston and "rode" around the world on a bicycle in 1894. This enterprising young woman managed, alone and quite unaided, to make it around the world and begin advertising promotion of women's sports. The afterword is not to be missed, as it is a family history in itself. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cindy | 2/15/2014

    " This book was not an easy read with detailed descriptions and some repetition of the same events. However, I learned a lot about women's lives and social mores during the 1890's and a little about the history of bicycling to boot! I came to admire Annie for her independent and strong spirit in spite of her tendency to tell tall tales about her so-called trip around the world on a bicycle. Amusing. Thought provoking. It will make you grateful that you didn't live in the 1890's! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Carolyn | 2/10/2014

    " Admirable oman and I love how much information the biographer had upon his subject. I wanted to go too. But there were times I was right beside her. Thanks to the thorough writing. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Clara J. | 2/6/2014

    " This book is a true story about a young woman in the late 1800's. Her goal was to make it around the world on bicycle in only 15 months. She was a strong woman and persevered. I liked the book, but it was a little slow to read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Theresa | 2/2/2014

    " interesting to a point -- the basic idea of a woman riding her bike around the world way back at the turn of the century was intriguing. But the author writes like he is writing a dissertation -- way too caught up in documentation--the point is that we know Annie *exaggerated* (a lot) and that it is impossible to know much of what actually happened--but it's still a great story, and should have been told as such. It would have been a better read if the author simply said once or twice, hey, we don't know what really happened, but... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gail | 1/12/2014

    " I thought this was a great read. The book was well-researched and fascinating. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen | 12/11/2013

    " Tells about Annie Londonderry's bike ride around the world in 1894-95. Had some interesting thoughts about women's rights but didn't draw me in completely and it was hard to completely like Annie since she was a bit of a fraud "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jill | 11/16/2013

    " Awful book, repetitive and chopping writing. The whole thing was fake and she was a fraud and a terrible mother. Couldn't finish. Enough said? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sophie | 9/5/2013

    " Very interesting read. It was wonderful to read about a woman who apparently was world-famous in the mid-1890s but is virtually unknown today. What a tragedy. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Shari | 7/15/2013

    " Wonderful story, but very poorly written and not interesting enough to hold my attention. Boring. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen Holt | 5/23/2013

    " Interesting person. Good audio about women's rights and the bicycle. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michael | 1/31/2013

    " The amount of research done was amazing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Patricia | 12/5/2012

    " A great bicycle story of the early days (1894) She was a clever, self promoter who rode around the world her way. This is a true story...or as much as her decendent could research from the press in the mutiple cities and countries where she visited n her incredible journey. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Natalie | 10/15/2012

    " I wish there was a 2.5. Ok book, interesting. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maryellen | 8/7/2012

    " I had an opportunity to hear the author talk about this book, at our library. His story was fascinating and the book very interesting. Great lesson in how important family is! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Margaret | 12/25/2011

    " Interesting story. Great to read about a pioneering woman and a bicycle trip. The writing was good but not one of those stories that had me not wanting to put the book down. Glad to know about this gutsy dame! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeffrey | 12/3/2011

    " I wanted to like this book, but the writer spends to much time reminding us that Annie Londonderry was a compulsive lair that it just ruins the story. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lolly | 9/3/2011

    " Interesting true account of a Victorian woman who rides her bike around the world "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Donna Jo Atwood | 2/16/2011

    " Rather disjointed book "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jodi | 1/20/2011

    " This was a fun book to read, indeed! I do recommend it if you're into bicycling, women's liberation and history. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Natalie | 1/12/2011

    " I wish there was a 2.5. Ok book, interesting. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Shari | 11/10/2010

    " Wonderful story, but very poorly written and not interesting enough to hold my attention. Boring. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michael | 9/8/2010

    " The amount of research done was amazing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen | 7/10/2010

    " Interesting person. Good audio about women's rights and the bicycle. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tinytextiles | 1/19/2009

    " A true story about a young married woman who in 1894 took up the challenge to ride a bike round the world in 1 year. The first half of the book is engrossing but it begins to wear thin after that. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cindy | 8/5/2008

    " What a hoot! I would love to have as much chutzpah as Annie did. An account by Annie Lodonderry's great grandnephew of her around the world trip from 1894-95. A must read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen | 8/4/2008

    " Tells about Annie Londonderry's bike ride around the world in 1894-95. Had some interesting thoughts about women's rights but didn't draw me in completely and it was hard to completely like Annie since she was a bit of a fraud
    "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lolly | 5/24/2008

    " Interesting true account of a Victorian woman who rides her bike around the world "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gail | 5/20/2008

    " I thought this was a great read. The book was well-researched and fascinating. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Clara | 4/5/2008

    " This book is a true story about a young woman in the late 1800's. Her goal was to make it around the world on bicycle in only 15 months. She was a strong woman and persevered. I liked the book, but it was a little slow to read. "

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About the Author

Peter Zheutlin has been chasing the story of his great-grandaunt Annie Londonderry for more than four years. He is an avid cyclist and a freelance journalist whose work appears regularly in the Boston Globe and the Christian Science Monitor. He has also written for the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, AARP: The Magazine, Bicycling, the New England Quarterly, and other publications. He lives in Needham, Massachusetts.

About the Narrator

Barrett Whitener has been narrating audiobooks since 1992. His recordings have won several awards, including the prestigious Audie and seven Earphones Awards. AudioFile magazine has named him one of the Best Voices of the Century. He lives in Washington, DC.