ISBN - 978-1-444-75911-2
PUBLISHER - Hachette
FIRST PUBLISHED - 2012
PAGES - 384
GENRE - Fiction
BINDING - Paperback
SOURCE - Publishers
AUTHOR - Chris Cleave
BEST-SELLERS - The Other Hand, Incendiary, Little Bee
SYNOPSIS - [via GoodReads]
Gold is the story of Zoe and Kate, world-class athletes who have been friends and rivals since their first day of Elite training. They’ve loved, fought, betrayed, forgiven, consoled, gloried, and grown up together. Now on the eve of London 2012, their last Olympics, both women will be tested to their physical and emotional limits. They must confront each other and their own mortality to decide, when lives are at stake: What would you sacrifice for the people you love, if it meant giving up the thing that was most important to you in the world?
EXCERPT - August 24, 2004
Changing room, Olympic Velodrome, Athens
Women’s sprint cycling Olympic gold medal race
Just on the other side of an unpainted metal door, five thousand men, women, and children were chanting her name. Zoe Castle didn’t like it as much as she’d thought she would. She was twenty-four years old and she sat where her coach told her to sit, beside him, on a thin white bench with the blue protective film still on it.
“Don’t touch the door,” he said. “It’s alarmed.”
It was just the two of them in the tiny subterranean changing room. The walls were freshly plastered, and little hardened curds of the stuff lay on the cement floor where they’d fallen from the trowel. Zoe kicked at one. It came detached, skittered away, and dinged against the metal door.
FL Speak - This is my first Chris Cleave novel and I'm happy to say that I will definitely search for his books in the book stores. Gold is the story of Zoe and Kate. World's top two female cyclists respectively. This is the story of determination, courage, sacrifice and the glory and fame that comes with being the best in the business.
Zoe is the weird one. She's determined to a limit that she's willing to do anything to win gold. Even if that means fighting with her best friend, Kate. Kate is the laid back girl. She has the power to be the best and yet she's more attuned to her emotions. Zoey is raw power, Kate is all about balance and fluidity.
4 years ago when Kate dropped out of the Athens Olympics to raise her child, her husband Jack and Zoey were fighting for gold in their respective departments. 4 years down the line, Kate and Zoey are preparing for the London Olympics and Kate's daughter, Sophie is fighting for her life against luekamia.
This book brought me to tears. Here, you have a child who's a Star Wars fan and hoping to blast the bad blood cells of her body with the Death Ray and hope to survive like the Jedi. You have Kate, who's fighting for her reckoning in the big stage while worrying about her daughter, Sophie and her best friend, Zoe. We have Zoe, who's only goal in life is to win and win regardless of the people she crush underneath her and yet afraid to lose her only friend, Kate.
Gold takes you on a sprint of whirlwind emotions. It brings out the passion, the grit and the torment that these characters go through their daily lives. You're reduced to a spectator watching over their entire lives unable to fathom which fork will lead to which destiny. Gold is Chris Cleave's masterpiece. You simply fall in awe over the characters. They are normal people with an extraordinary determination to win, whatever the odds.
Gold is definitely one of the best books I've read this summer. Thank you Chris Cleave.
My Rating - 5 stars
PRICE - INR 350/-