Discover the historical evolution of Corvette over 35 years in this limited edition book collector book, Best of Vette Vues Magazine – 35th Anniversary. Written by editors William C. Wolf and Bonnie L. Wolf and filled with insider details and rare photos from Vette Vues Magazine‘s archives, this 480-page book is a must-read for car enthusiasts.
Book Review by Historian Dan Burrill
First published in 2007, this book was well received and is now available in very limited quantity.
This book is 8.5-inches by 5.5-inches, softbound 480-pages, and is broken down into nine interesting chapters going back 50 years.
When I first opened my copy of this book, I was sure it must have just been pulled out of a time capsule. A copy of a book that is 15 years old and is in like-new condition. What are the odds? Then, I found out that there are a limited number of these still in the vault, and, of course, when they sell out, then that’s it for the run. How appropriate that these books should come available on the 50th anniversary of the magazine.
Personally, I am reluctant to buy a book just from its cover, not having a chance to see some of the content or at least know what’s inside. It could be you feel the same way. So, let’s look inside:
This is one of the more interesting books on the historical evolution of the Corvette over 35 years. The book is well thought out and well laid out. And no wonder. It was written and edited by the staff at Vette Vues Magazine, which means it is filled with detail that only an insider would have. Also, the book contains a wonderful mixture of old colors and black-and-white photos.
It is the compilation of stories, information, and pictures going back 50 years ago. (Keep in mind, this book takes us up to 2007.) Dividing the contents into a lengthy forward and nine chapters makes it easy to navigate.
The introduction is especially good because it talks about how the idea for the magazine came about and the process of going from the idea to an actual product. This is where a lot of magazines fail. And to have a Corvette magazine that is still in business after 50 years is extremely rare. After working with the Editor as a freelance writer, I can tell you they love this business, and we all love the cars!
Chapter one kicks off with 65-color cover photos of historically significant Corvettes, including several rare racing models. For example, one cover features the fastest ‘56 Corvette in the world that ran at Bonneville Salt Flats. Another cover is a tribute to Zora Arkus Duntov.
Chapter Two: Featured Vettes. These are articles printed over the years, starting with a Grand Sport with a collage of color photos to go with the article. Then there are show cars, how-to articles, and interesting tech articles covering restoration and the latest speed and performance features. (All ancient history now, but fun to read about how it was done ‘back in the day.)
Chapter Three: Concept, Styling, and Prototype Cars. This is an important chapter because it talks about the Opal Project, which was the code word within GM for the project that later became the Corvette. This is an in-depth article with some great photos. If you want insider information on the development of the first Corvette, well, here it is. I’ve been around these cars for a long time, and I learned something new just from reading this article. The next article is on the CERV-1, again with several pages and lots of photos. And the list just goes on, The Corvette Tigershark concept vehicle, the Astro one, the XP 700, well, you get the picture.
Chapter 4, Hybrid, Specialty, and High-Performance Cars. This chapter starts out with Calloway Corvettes, and there are a lot of them, then we get into the Carlisle auction with a wide variety of high-performance and race cars. Next is a special section on the widebody Corvettes and the evolution of Greenwood, which covers the racing history. And, of course, lots of photos to go with it.
Chapter 5 is a trip down memory lane with advertisers then and now. Color ads and complete articles on advertising, which of course, is a necessity to keep the magazine alive. By the way, some of the original advertisers are still with the magazine.
Chapter 6, Corvette Racing and the famous cars: This is a thick chapter full of photographs and articles, and if I were to pick a chapter, this would probably be my favorite. These are people that were passionate about their cars and the sport, and it shows in the photos and the articles.
Chapter 7 Technical Articles: ‘Nice to be able to look back in time and see some of the more important articles such as “Putting it all on the Line, how William Hill (Bill) Mitchell and Zora Arkus Duntov Risk their jobs to Save the Corvette.” This is a very complete story and an important one, and I’m glad to see it in the book. It’s always fun to see what’s going on behind the curtains and what it takes to keep a project alive. Mitchell and Duntov were beyond passionate when it came to the Corvette.
Chapter 8 covers the Model Scene and Toy Vues. An entire chapter devoted to Corvette scale model cars over the years. Some of which become quite valuable to collectors. Lots of photos and ads and information on models. I was able to identify several of my own from this chapter.
Chapter Nine, the smile department. When was the last time you saw an automotive cartoon in a magazine? Well, this chapter is nothing but cartoons—an amusing way to end the book.
And to wrap it up, the inside of the back cover and the back cover both feature color artwork that would look great on a T-shirt.
It took me a week to absorb the 480 pages of photographs and material in this book. And I am still looking at it. It’s a great reference for anyone who has more than a passing interest in these legendary American-made sports cars. If you are a Corvette or even a GM aficionado, you owe it to yourself to have a copy of this book on your coffee table or in your GM library.
Discover the historical evolution of the Corvette over 35 years in this collector edition – the Best of Vette Vues Magazine. Filled with insider details and a mix of old and new photos, it’s a must-read for car enthusiasts. Order now before it’s too late!
Perfect Paperback: 480 pages
Publisher: Vette Vues Magazine; 1ST edition (2007)
Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.3 x 0.8 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
Did you know that Chevrolet had the first Corvette Magazine, it started in 1957. (Vette Vues was the first privately owned Corvette Magazine.) You can learn about Corvette News magazine’s history HERE!