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Book review: What Goes Around by Emily Chappell

By Peter Robins   March 2016

Faber, £12,99

25294.books.origjpgCycle couriers have accumulated glamour even as much of their work has vanished into fibre-optic cables; they have become models of style, of fitness and toughness, of freedom and independence within a city. Emily Chappell understands that perverse glamour well. It’s part of what drew her out of academia and into London traffic in the grim and recession-bitten winter of 2008 when she became a cycle courier.

This memoir evokes her initial starry-eyedness with style, while also providing chapter and verse on the job’s harsher side: the cold, the dirt, the…

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