Be omnivorous, don't just read one kind of book, read everything. - Richard Wagamese

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Review: Gold by Chris Cleave

Publisher: Bond Street Books
Pages: 336
Released: 2012
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 3/5


Zoe and Kate met when they were nineteen and both competing for a spot in a competitive program for cyclists. They both dreamed of winning at the Olympics. Over the years, they have become close and counted on each other to get them through life’s difficult hurdles. Zoe has won multiple gold metals, but the London Olympics are coming up, and it’s her last chance to win a medal. Her whole life is consumed with cycling and she doesn’t know how to survive without her rigorous training. Zoe has always done anything and everything to win. Kate on the other hand has always had boundaries that she wasn’t willing to cross. Kate has always been good enough to win gold, but she’s never had the chance to compete. The birth of her daughter delayed her dream, and then her daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia, further stalling her plans. Kate knows the London games is her last chance, she wants to go everything within her power to win.


I wanted to love Gold, but I didn’t. I thought the book was well written and the storyline was original and interesting. The first half of the book was really enjoyable, but half-way through some secrets are uncovered that left me really uneasy. At that point, I struggled with the characters. They didn’t feel as real or sincere. I don’t want to spoil it, but I stopped relating to the characters and thought they were very selfish. The relationship between Kate and her husband Jack suddenly seemed forced.

I think this book is definitely worth the time to read. I’ve read many rave reviews, but it just didn’t resonate that well with me. This is my first novel by Chris Cleave, and I would really like to give his other books a try. I thought the book was good, just not as good as I expected.


  1. I've read so many great reviews of this book, and yours is a fresh and new look. I have a feeling I would feel as you did, and that's why I haven't gotten to it yet. I hate it when I don't adore a book that everyone else loves. It makes me sad :(
    Great review today!

  2. Thanks for your honesty. I'm not sure this one is for me either.

  3. I'm kind of glad to read your review so I'll go into the book with lower expectations.

  4. I'm not really drawn to the plot but I really liked Little Bee, so I'm glad to know what to expect for this one.

  5. Chris Cleave is an author I've wanted to read for so long now. I have Little Bee on the shelf staring at me, but I hear so many mixed things. Some people swear by him and others have told me to run for the hills. I have a feeling I'll be a bit in the middle, like you seem to be.

  6. We read Little Bee for our book club last year and connecting with the characters and understanding why they did what they did was a problem for most of us. Don't know if I'll give this one a try, but the plot is promising.

  7. That's too bad that it started off good and then became disappointing. I hate when an author reveals something that totally makes you rethink what you felt about the characters.

  8. I'm glad to have your perspective on this book. I have Little Bee on my bookshelf and have been wanting to read it for some time.