The Bone Cage

The Bone Cage

Book - 2007
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Digger, an 85 kilo wrestler, and Sadie, a 26-year-old speed swimmer, stand on the verge of realizing every athlete's dream--winning a gold medal at the Olympics. Both athletes are nearing the end of their athletic careers, and are forced to confront the question: what happens to athletes when their bodies are too old and injured to compete? The blossoming relationship between Digger and Sadie is tested in the all-important months leading up to the Olympics, as intense training schedules, divided loyalties, and unpredicted obstacles take their draining toll. The Olympics, as both of them are painfully aware, will be the realization or the end of a life's dream. The Bone Cage captures the physicality, sensuality, and euphoric highs of amateur sport, and the darker, cruel side of sport programs that wear athletes down and spit them out at the end of their bloom. With realism and humour, author Angie Abdou captures athletes on the brink of that transition--the lead-up to that looming redefinition of self--and explores how people deal with the loss of their dream.

Publisher: Edmonton : NeWest Press, c2007.
ISBN: 9781897126172
Branch Call Number: FIC Abdou 9254tc 2
FIC Abdou 9254mm 1
FIC Abdou 9254mv 2
FIC Abdou 9254ul 2
FIC Abdou 9254tv 1
FIC Abdou 9254ag 2
Characteristics: 235 p.


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hughnsusie Feb 02, 2013

A previous reader found this book only mildly interesting; to me that sums it up. Not, unhappily, being an Olympic-level athlete I don't know how accurate the depiction was of the training, but that aspect of the book seemed convincing. By contrast, I wasn't engaged by any of the characters, and found the writing a little flat.

A slightly disappointing, waiting-at-the-airport sort of read.

Jan 19, 2012

I loved this book. It was special to me because it took place in Calgary in the community that I grew up in.
I enjoyed how it was a mix of sports, suspense, and romance that was not over the top.

I don't think everyone can relate or enjoy the book though, I can see it having a limited audience.

Nov 01, 2011

I didn't find this book terrible to read but it's nothing stellar either. The writing is clear. I didn't exactly love the ending.

Ergo May 05, 2011

I just LOVED this book. It's an unusual setting and theme but the characters are so well drawn. I learned so much about the human physique, too. Fans of "The Biggest Loser" or those who push themselves physically, will especially enjoy the setting of preparing for the Olympics. But the writing is so appealing and the characters so real that anyone interested in a good story will enjoy this book. I cannot wait for this author's next book -- her writing really appeals to me. .

libraryheather May 03, 2011

Selected as a nominee for the 2011 Canada Reads competition, The Bone Cage is a fascinating look into the lives of elite athletes. With her first novel, Angie Abdou, who has a PhD in Canadian Literature and Creative Writing, has written a book that surpasses the boundaries of “sport lit”. The Bone Cage is a character study of two Olympic-bound athletes—Sadie, a swimmer, and Digger, a wrestler. With vivid detail, Abdou describes the lives of these two and all that is required to reach this level of success in a sport. And Abdou should know. She herself was a competitive swimmer and her brother was an Olympic wrestler in the Sydney games.
The story is told in chapters that alternate between Digger and Sadie until they finally meet and their worlds change forever. As both train for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, they begin to wonder what lies beyond this ultimate competition. So many hours of training have been put into achieving this goal, and this will be their last chance to compete at this level. What will happen to them when the Olympics is over? Win or lose, their lives are about to become very different. Fans of Canadian literary fiction will really enjoy this novel. There is also an element of suspense as the reader becomes wrapped up in how the athletes will fare in the end. A commentary on Canadian society and how it treats its athletes, the book highlights how much focus is put on events like the Olympics without anyone really understanding what it takes to get there. The Bone Cage is definitely worth the read!

Nov 12, 2010

The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou is about young and not-so-young elite athletes striving for their personal and professional pinnacles, a place on the Canadian Olympic team. The story is traced compellingly through the alternating and eventually intersecting trajectories of speed swimmer Sadie and wrestler Tom (Digger to family, friends and teammates). Abdou draws persuasively on her own competitive sports background (she swims at the Masters level, her brother was an Olympic wrestler) to build a convincing and approachable story.

Find a longer review of this book, comparing it to the movie Black Swan, at:

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libraryheather May 03, 2011

libraryheather thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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