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Extended Audio Sample Gold: A Novel, by Chris Cleave Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (6,422 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Chris Cleave Narrator: Emilia Fox Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Kate and Zoe met at nineteen when they both made the cut for the national training program in track cycling—a sport that demands intense focus, blinding exertion, and unwavering commitment. They are built to exploit the barest physical and psychological edge over equally skilled rivals, all of whom are fighting for the last one tenth of a second that separates triumph from despair.

Now at thirty-two, the women are facing their last and biggest race: the 2012 Olympics. Each wants desperately to win gold, and each has more than a medal to lose.

Kate is the more naturally gifted, but the demands of her life have a tendency to slow her down. Her eight-year-old daughter Sophie is fighting a recurrence of the leukemia that nearly killed her three years ago. Devoted and self-sacrificing Kate knows her daughter is fragile, but at the height of her last frenzied months of training, might she be blind to the most terrible prognosis?

Intense, aloof Zoe has always hovered on the periphery of real human companionship, and her compulsive need to win at any cost has more than once threatened her friendship with Kate—and her own sanity. Will she allow her obsession, and the advantage she has over a harried, anguished mother, to sever the bond they have shared for more than a decade?

Echoing the adrenaline-fueled rush of a race around the Velodrome track, Gold is a triumph of superbly paced, heart-in-throat storytelling. With great humanity and glorious prose, Chris Cleave examines the values that lie at the heart of our most intimate relationships, and the choices we make when lives are at stake and everything is on the line.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A heartstring-tugger with an adrenaline-fueled plot from the bestselling author of Little Bee.”


  • “Chris Cleave’s latest novel lives and breathes, sweats and suffers at the harrowing place where ambition collides with sacrifice…Cleave proves again that if writing were an Olympic sport, he’d be vying for a medal.”

    Miami Herald

  • “Cleave goes for the gold and brings it home in his thrillingly written and emotionally rewarding novel about the world of professional cycling…From start to finish, this is a truly Olympic-level literary achievement.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • Selected for the July 2012 Indie Next List
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Amazon Best Book of the Month, July 2012

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Pauline | 2/17/2014

    " Technically, I didn't finish reading this book but I gave it a good go for the effort and could NOT get into it no matter how many times I tried. I am just getting too old to read books that don't grab me & keep me! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kristin | 2/12/2014

    " Really liked this book. I like Cleave anyway, but this blew me away. Great twists, interesting insight into the lives of elite athletes, and brilliantly executed tension between the three main characters. Will never look at cycling, or indeed elite athletes, the same way again. This is how a book should leave you: changed. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Karen Williams | 2/2/2014

    " I liked the race descriptions, the Proclaimers and Star War references. Each character has something driving their competitive spirit. Zoe races as though the devil is chasing her (and perhaps he is....). Sophie is a darling and I kept cheering for her. I did find it hard to believe in Kate as a serious competitor- too empathetic to compete on the Olympic level. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Michel | 1/28/2014

    " Good book! Story was well told, characters were fairly well developed, and I enjoyed the athlete angle. Worth a read. "

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