Speedology: Speed on New York on Speed

Timothy Speed Levitch, Author
Timothy Speed Levitch, Author Context Books $16 (240p) ISBN 978-1-893956-29-2
Reviewed on: 06/01/2002
Release date: 06/01/2002
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In Speedology: Speed on New York on Speed, journalist Timothy Levitch presents an uncontrolled, sweeping portrait of Manhattan. (Levitch's bus tour of the city was the subject of a 1998 documentary film, The Cruise.) The eclectic mix of historical tidbits, inspirational quotes, guidebook-like descriptions and humorous commentary make for a sometimes frenetic but mostly entertaining book about the city Levitch calls ""a great teacher bestowing life lessons upon a mostly slow-learning population."" Atypical in format-Levitch uses various font styles and sizes-the book is divided into chapters on New York neighborhoods including SoHo, Midtown and the Lower East Side. While he conspicuously leaves out chapters on Chinatown or Little Italy, Levitch does offer fresh takes on much-written-about places, such as the Chrysler Building (""the semblance of a budding flower and a spaceship preparing for launch""), and other more obscure locales, such as Filene's Basement (""many of the women in Filene's Basement are masochists""). Agent, Jill Grinberg.
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