Excerpt from Gold by Chris Cleave, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Gold
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jul 2012, 336 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2013, 368 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Lisa Guidarini

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


She heard him hesitate. “Come on, Kate, don’t be bitter. It’ll be you racing next time, in Beijing.”

“No, I mean I actually couldn’t watch. The power’s gone out.”

“Did you check the fuses?”

“Gosh, Ken, my Barbie brain did not entertain that option.”

“Sorry.”

Kate sighed. “No, it’s okay. I tried to fix the fuse but Sophie wouldn’t let me.” Straightaway, she realized how sulky that sounded.

“Our daughter is pretty strong for her age,” said Jack, “but I still reckon you should be able to kick her arse in a straight fight.”

She laughed. “Look, I’m sorry. I’m just having a shitty time here.”

“I know. Thank you for looking after her. I miss you.”

Tears formed in her eyes. “Do you?”

“Oh my God,” he said, “are you kidding? If I had to choose between flying home to you and racing for gold here tomorrow, you know I’d be right back on that plane, don’t you?”

She sniffed, and wiped her eyes. “I’m not asking you to choose, idiot. I’m asking you to win.”

She heard his smile down the phone. “If I win, it’s only because I’m scared of what you’ll do to me if I don’t.”

“Come back home to me when you win gold, okay? Promise me you won’t stay out there with her.”

“Oh Christ,” he said. “You know you don’t even have to ask me that.”

“I know,” she said quietly. “I’m sorry.”

Through the phone connection, the noise of the crowd peaked again.

“The second race is starting,” Jack shouted over the roar. “I’ll call you back, okay?”

“You think she’ll win it?”

“Yeah, absolutely. She made round one look like a Sunday ride.”

“Jack?”

“Yeah?”

“I love you,” she said. “More than ice cream after training.”

“I love you too,” he said. “More than winning.”

She smiled. It was a perfect moment, and then she heard herself ruin it by saying, “Call me when the race is over, okay?”

She cringed at herself for being so needy, for putting this extra demand on him. Love wasn’t supposed to require the constant reassurance. But then again, love wasn’t supposed to sit watching its own reflection in a dead TV while temptation rode a blazing path to glory.

Whatever Jack said back to her, the crowd drowned it out by chanting Zoe’s name.

She clicked the call off and let the phone fall softly to the washable, hard-wearing cushion covers. It wasn’t just that she’d stopped believing she would ever get to the Olympics. Now, if she was really honest with herself, she wasn’t even sure if she could win the kind of races you rode on kitchen chairs and sofas.

She stared with glazed eyes through the window. In the shimmering heat of their little back yard, a squirrel had found something in the bottom of a crisp packet.

She thought, Is this my life now?

She held her hands to her temples, more gently now, and timed the pulse in them against the second hand of the living room clock. It had been months since she’d trained hard but even now—even with this stress—her heart rate was subsixty. The second hand was back where it started, and she’d only counted fifty-two. Sometimes this was the only small victory in her days: this knowledge that she was fitter than time.

She looked up and saw that Sophie was mimicking her, trying to press her own tiny hands against the sides of her head. Kate laughed, and for the very first time Sophie laughed back.

Kate brimmed with euphoria.

Excerpted from Gold by Chris Cleave. Copyright © 2012 by Chris Cleave. Excerpted by permission of Simon & Schuster. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book:
  Track Racing and the Velodrome

Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: A Certain Age
    A Certain Age
    by Beatriz Williams
    Lovers of high-society gossip, there's a new set of players in town. A good 20 out of 23 of our...
  • Book Jacket: The Romanovs
    The Romanovs
    by Simon Sebag Montefiore
    The Romanovs chronicles the reigns of the 20 individuals who were considered members of that dynasty...
  • Book Jacket: Barkskins
    Barkskins
    by Annie Proulx
    Barkskins, by Annie Proulx, is not a book to read quickly. After a month of slow reading, I ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Imperial Wife
    by Irina Reyn

    A smart, engaging novel that parallels two fascinating worlds and two singular women.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Falling
    by Jane Green

    "Readers who enjoy a love story with heart will adore this tale of homecoming and transformation." - LJ

    Read Member Reviews

Members review books pre-publication. Read their opinions in First Impressions

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
Spinster
by Kate Bolick

A bold, original, moving book that will inspire fanatical devotion and ignite debate.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Summer Stunner
Summer Giveaway

Win 5 books, each week in July!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

W M T N, W C F All

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

BookBrowse Summer Giveaway

We're giving away
5 books every
week in July!