Harley-Davidson: A Three-Dimensional Tribute to an American Icon | Review

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Rider’s Library – Harley-Davidson: A Three-Dimensional Tribute to an American Icon

Think of it as H-D in 3-D, no batteries or Internet connection required. It is the most unusual book about Harley-Davidson, or any other marque, for that matter, in my library.

It is “Harley-Davidson – A Three-Dimensional Tribute to an American Icon,” by vintage motorcycle expert Jerry Hatfield (also the author of Indian Motorcycles) and Dawn Bentley.

This book is one of those rare works that make mention of the design and engineering team essential; Jim Deesing designed this fascinating book and Roger Smith did the paper engineering.

Why, you may ask, does a book require “paper engineering?” Because this is a pop-up book. The book is just over an inch thick and has only ten pages—but what pages they are!

From beautifully presented historic images of the H-D founding fathers that literally jump off the page when you open the book and a similar 3D image of the Serial #1 Harley concealed in the overleaf of the original H-D manufacturing shed to a 3D Elvis Presley as he appeared on the cover of the May 1956 issue of the Enthusiast magazine and 3D image of the 1994 VR1000 road racer, Hatfield and crew tell the Motor Company’s story in a way unmatched in any other book.

There are even pages that are interactive, for example, on page nine, a 1997 Heritage Springer Softail appears with a small tab at the bottom of it, with an arrow pointing down at an angle. Gently pull the tab in that direction and it moves down, revealing its lineage by exposing an image of a 1936 EL (unofficially known as a “knucklehead.”)

The narrative is brief but concise out of necessity because this book is oriented to the visual presentation of the Company’s history through images and dimension. You might thing of pop-up books being more oriented to children, but this book is a treat for young and old alike.

Make no mistake, the content is sophisticated enough for adult readers to appreciate, yet clever and dynamic enough to fascinate young readers—who just may be moved to become future riders.

Book Data:

  • Title: Harley-Davidson: A Three-Dimensional Tribute to an American Icon
  • Author: Jerry Hatfield and Dawn Bentley
  • Published: 1998
  • Publisher: Pop-up Press, 2716 Ocean Park Blvd, Suite 2020, Santa Monica, CA 90405, for Harley-Davidson.
  • ISBN: 1-58117-013-0

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